The World’s End
And so we reach the end of Edgar Wright’s Three Flavours Cornetto Trilogy: we had our horror/romance strawberry, the traditional bold blue of buddy-cop films, and we have now our minty fresh sci-fi extravaganza. Our story begins and ends with Gary King, an alcoholic who truly believes that the best night of his life was when he was 17, when he and his four friends began an epic pub crawl through their hometown of Newton Haven and never completed it. Twenty years later and desperate for one more night of glory, King convinces his friends Pete, Steve, Oliver and Andy to rejoin him on his epic quest. Of course, if you’ve learned anything from Shaun of the Dead or Hot Fuzz, some crazy shit is about to go down.
Personally, I found The World’s End to be a wonderfully dynamic film. We’re given this simple idea of the intoxication of nostalgia, and that gets blown up through sobering realism and revelation (okay, I’ll stop with booze puns). After all, once you leave home and come back, nothing ever seems the same. Then other times, things literally are not the same – whether it be a personal growth, or you have been replaced by an alien robot. Through the humor and heaviness, we’re presented with a personal journey for an unlikable but human character, as well as an honest portrayal of the hazards of old wounds – ultimately a story of friendship and letting go. (I just want to note that Pete’s short but heartfelt soliloquy in The Cross Hands was probably my favorite moment.)
I can’t help but gush over how well Wright and Simon Pegg wrote this film. There’s no doubt that there are a plethora of themes, but it’s very interesting how the concept of foreshadowing plays through the story with so much depth. For instance, obviously the original crawl would foreshadow the guys’ second attempt, but the fact that the names of the pubs reflect pivotal points of the story is incredibly well planned. Of course, there are more instances than this, but I really don’t want to spoil anything – just keep on the look out, yeh know?
Well-written, well-acted (easily my favorite of Nick Frost’s performances), ardent and hysterical, The World’s End is the perfect way to end this genre-bending trilogy.
Final Grade: A