Director: Edgar Wright
Starring: Simon Pegg, Nick Frost, Martin Freeman, Paddy Considine, Eddie Marsan and Rosamund Pike
Review Written By: Michael Dalton (Prime Minister)
The World’s End is not as funny as Shaun of the Dead and Hot Fuzz, however it is possibly the trilogy’s most mature and substantial film. The World’s End is a film that functions just as well, if not better, as a drama, action or science fiction film as it does as a comedy. The character of Gary King is perhaps the most multi-layered and challenging character that Pegg has played. Whereas in Shaun and Fuzz, Pegg was the straight man who had it relatively together and Nick Frost was the lovable, bumbling buffoon, this film changes that dynamic on its head. Simon Pegg plays a wreck of a man, somebody with substance abuse issues living in a perpetual state of adolescence, hiding a deep depression through excessive actions. It is the best performance of Pegg’s career; one that initially provides laughs though may intentionally grate some before ultimately providing genuine emotion towards the end. Nick Frost plays more of the straight man though gets to explore a different dimension as the film progresses. In giving these two stars of the trilogy, different, deeper characters to play, they in turn have provided the best performances of this trilogy and their careers. Though those expecting the same sort of chemistry and relationship between the two will be disappointed, this is much more of an ensemble than the previous two films. This film isn’t just the Pegg and Frost show, with Paddy Considine, Eddie Marsan and Martin Freeman all fantastic as the other members of the gang.
The true star of these films has always been behind the camera in my eyes with co-writer and director, Edgar Wright. With this film he has made four and won four as far as I’m concerned. With his trademark energetic and inventive style, Wright can make even the most mundane and domestic British settings have the excitement and sheen of a blockbuster Hollywood production. This is definitely the man who gave us Scott Pilgrim Vs. The World, with the fight scenes in this film which take place in toilets and beer gardens being among the finest action scenes I’ve seen all year. The screenplay that he has concocted with star Simon Pegg, is just as witty and clever as the previous two films, if not more so. All of Wright’s films benefit from multiple viewings and you feel that as with Shaun of the Dead and Hot Fuzz, this film will be the gift that keeps on giving. However if you are aware of Wright and Pegg’s trick of spelling out the entire film early on through subtle hints, then this film may be slightly more predictable than you would have hoped. Though despite the predictability that may plague a super fan, this film is incredibly cleverly constructed and is one of the better screenplays of the year. The film is much more thematically heavy and resonant than one might expect, with its ideas of conformity, the potential anonymity of connectivity, identity and even addiction being quite pronounced, poignant and even profound.
Given that this film is necessarily different from its predecessors, the Cornetto connections when they’re thrown in feel slightly forced and out of place. Like Prometheus, this is a film that is at its best when it is being its own beast and feels rather uncomfortable and forced when doing the fan service. The ending is also one that is sure to divide people, with it not being quite as immediately emphatic and satisfying as its predecessors. It is however an ending that has grown on me and one that is unlike any other you have seen this year.
Ultimately while it may not be as funny as expected, the Cornetto connections rather uncomfortable and the ending slightly iffy, The World’s End is an original, unique and substantial comedy.
Movie Parliament Rating: MAJORITY GOVERNMENT
By Movie Parliament Prime Minister,
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