How do you know if a director, like Edgar Wright, is making a difference in Hollywood? First, you make a funny take on the zombie genre, and it turns out to be one of the funniest movies ever: Shaun of the Dead (2004). Second, you then make a movie that takes on the buddy cop genre and that works of being on the same level of funny as the zombie genre: Hot Fuzz (2007). If your next projects involve drinking, alien invasions, and having a great time that depicts the science fiction genre in The World’s End, then you’re beyond great. In the third and final installment in the director’s “Cornetto trilogy”, The World’s End was the perfect movie to end the 2013 summer movie season the right way.
What’s the Story: Gary King (Simon Pegg) gather up his old high school friends, Andy Knight (Nick Frost), Oliver Chamberlain (Martain Freeman), Steven Prince (Paddy Considine), and Peter Page (Eddie Marsan), to return to their town of Newton Haven to accomplish “The Golden Mile”, an epic pub crawl where they must go to 12 pubs and drinking 12 pints in one night to, hopefully, get to the “The World’s End”. An attempt that wasn’t successful years ago. So as they go further into the town, some weird stuff is happening making this a night that will be remembered as there’s an alien invasion going around.
Why talk about The World’s End? First of all, Wright is one of my favorite directors of all-time and he wasn’t made a single misstep in his career. And secondly, it’s been on my mind recently and still thinks it’s amazing. This doesn’t get talked about a lot when discussing his filmography. There were also two movies in 2013 that have great talents revolving around the apocalypse: This and This is The End. This is The End is another movie about the end of the world featuring funny comedic talents, and it was one of the funniest movies I saw that summer. But it wasn’t until The World’s End came out near the end of August, and it was a blast.
From the start of the opening scene to the final shot, this is the energetic movie that we needed. There’s absolutely nothing I can hate about Wright’s style of direction. This story feels so crazy that these situations keep happening to this group in the weirdest ways and as the night progresses when they keep drinking and drinking, more madcap madness ensues into glorious oblivion.
Simon Pegg leads the charge as Gary King, and this honestly might be the best performance he has ever given. His character feels a bit relatable as for someone who lives in the past and just wants to achieve anything that’s possible. He’s funny and dumb, and that’s all it takes for a great guy like Gary King. The supporting cast from Martin Freeman as Oliver, Paddy Considine as Steven, and Eddie Marsan as Peter was hilarious as well and the chemistry never falls flat, especially when it’s the pairing between Pegg and Frost. Even Rosamund Pike, who I wasn’t the biggest fan of at the time, as Oliver’s sister Sam didn’t give a bad performance either. All of them seemed to be having a great time filming.
The script by Wright and Pegg is a pure genius by making this half complex, half smart, and all around adding the humor with a spoonful of apocalyptic feels to the mix. With the combination of those and the editing, it comes out into greatness. Just like Shaun of the Dead and Hot Fuzz, there are so many jokes hitting at ten miles per hour. Even if it’s British humor, it’s generally funny every time making me laugh every time, and because this is coming from the minds of Wright and Pegg, you’ll be able to catch a lot of things when watching it again that were cleverly brought up as the film goes on. And you would think taking the alien invasion story would be too ridiculous, but not in the slightest.
Just like Wright’s previous underrated film, Scott Pilgrim vs. the World, the fight sequences are spectacular and stylishly chorographic. Was there any moment where it felt boring? No, it was so exciting, especially the bathroom fight to which it ended one of the funniest jokes in the entire film. There are also some pretty good parallels that happening throughout the film when viewing for a second time.
Out of the three movies in the “Cornetto trilogy”, this is probably my least favorite, but it’s still fantastic. I remembered walking out of the theater feeling joyful after witnessing a pretty awesome sci-fi comedy.
If anybody’s a fan of Wright’s previous collaborations with Pegg and Frost, you will have so much fun with The World’s End. The characters are great, the action was awesome, and it really gains a compelling story that goes into the unexpected as the film goes on. The World’s End is fast-paced, hilarious, and turns the alien invasion genre over its head by making this a great comedy that shouldn’t be forgotten for years on.
If you haven’t seen The World’s End in the six years it’s been out, do yourself a favor and rent it immediately!