Review by Derrick Carter
Running Time: 1 hour 49 minutes
MPAA Rating: R for Pervasive Language including Sexual References
Directed by: Edgar Wright
Written by: Simon Pegg & Edgar Wright
Starring: Simon Pegg, Nick Frost, Eddie Marsan, Martin Freeman, Paddy Considine, Rosamund Pike & Pierce Brosnan
Edgar Wright, Simon Pegg, and Nick Frost all burst onto the spotlight in America with their zombie comedy SHAUN OF THE DEAD. Three years later, they returned with an equally hilarious and brilliant (maybe even a tad more so) action comedy HOT FUZZ. It’s been six years and the long awaited arrival of these three capping off their trilogy of spoof-comedies has arrived with a sci-fi romp titled THE WORLD’S END. This third and final entry in the “Cornetto” trilogy is also the movie that packs the most punch.
In 1990, Gary King and his four friends set off to conquer the Golden Mile, a series of twelve pubs in one night. Though they didn’t quite make it to the end, Gary still considers it to be the best time of his life. Now a middle-aged alcoholic, Gary gathers his mates together for a reunion to return to their hometown and conquer the Golden Mile again, once and for all. All of the friends are a little reluctant to come though, especially Andie (Gary’s former best mate). As the five adults catch up, it appears that something is wrong with their hometown. Most of the population has been replaced by robots and the group (including another acquaintance of theirs) must work together to survive the night. But more importantly, will they finally make it the last bar (aptly named The World’s End).
THE WORLD’S END works as a comedy, a science-fiction film, and a drama about friendships that last, as well as reminiscing on the past. In fact, the first 30-40 minutes of THE WORLD’S END play out without a bit of science-fiction or robots to be found. This is far from a detriment to the film, as it allows us time to watch these characters interact, laugh at Gary’s constant blundering and idiocy, as well as feel for them (both the frustrated companions and the tragic figure that Gary is).
By the time, the first robots are made apparent, I had almost forgotten that this was a sci-fi comedy, because I was buying it so well as just a plain comedy with dramatic elements. Once the action starts though, it rarely lets up. Seeing as this is an Edgar Wright film, it never takes the road we expect it to. The two regulars, Pegg and Frost, deliver their best roles to date as two former friends who have had a falling out for a major reason that’s revealed as the movie goes along. Meanwhile, Martin Freeman and Paddy Considine (who have both appeared in Wright’s former films in side parts) are given a lot to do here. Eddie Marsan shines in this comedy too, which is particularly impressive when you consider his filmography contains a whole lot of serious roles.
THE WORLD’S END also concludes on a bittersweet and wholly satisfying note that took a lot of guts to go through with. In fact, I didn’t know how I felt about the ending as I walked out of the theater, but the more I think about it, the more I love it. This is a comedy with damn near every attribute you could want a film (of any kind) to have. It’s funny, touching, entertaining, and leaves you thinking about it for a long while after. Not only is THE WORLD’S END the best comedy in years, it’s also one of the best movies of 2013! So gather your mates, maybe get a drink or two, and prepare to be annihilated in the best way possible!