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Review: The World's End

Aug. 20, 2013by: JimmyO

PLOT: After a failed attempt at an epic pub crawl years ago, five friends try and recapture their youthful endeavor. When they return to their hometown, things arent exactly the way they had left it. Soon, they realize that there is more at stake than just having a pint in twelve pubs as they may well be battling for the very existence of the human race.

REVIEW: This year finds the end of two very different yet surprisingly similar trilogies. In Richard Linklaters BEFORE MIDNIGHT, he examines the once giddy romance from a sometimes painfully honest perspective. The couple who met in BEFORE SUNRISE and rekindled their romance in BEFORE SUNSET have now fully realized what they had given up and how exactly their lives could have been different in the terrific BEFORE MIDNIGHT. The same can be said for Edgar Wrights finale in The Three Flavours Cornetto Trilogy. With SHAUN OF THE DEAD, there was a sense of a giddy bromance between Simon Pegg and Nick Frost, while in HOT FUZZ the relationship grows and sacrifices start to become part of the equation. With THE WORLD'S END, the two men have come to the very painful realization that the glory years are gone and you can never go home again.

This connection may seem questionable, yet it is entirely fitting as the relationships for both couples progress in very real and entertaining ways. Certainly Ethan Hawke and Julie Delpy play the same characters in Linklaters films and are wonderfully inspired. In Wrights hysterically funny and charming tales, his two lead actors take on three very different, yet emotionally rich characters. Generally, it is Frost that takes on the immature and self-absorbed bloke who Pegg is always covering for. This time around, however, it is Pegg who is given the opportunity to wallow in the aftermath of a man desperately holding on to what he once was or at least thought he was. Whatever it is you think of Peggs Gary King, his performance is absolutely flawless. The relationship he shares with Frost (who is also fantastic) is phenomenal as well.

THE WORLD'S END is the final stop in an epic pub crawl, where five young men attempted to down a pint of beer in each of twelve pubs in their little town Newton Haven the route fondly known as the Glorious Golden Mile. Their youth, inexperience, and bad luck prevented these lads from completing this arduous trek before. Of course, twenty some odd years later, King (Pegg) returns to convince his mates that they must attempt this daring feat once again. It is a tough sell as each of the men including Steven (Paddy Considine), Oliver (Martin Freeman), and Peter (Eddie Marsan) have moved on with their lives. Yet, once King convinces them that the hardest sell of all, their buddy Andy (Nick Frost), is willing to do it, they all agree. The problem is that now he must actually convince Andy to return to some very bad memories brought on by their complicated friendship.

The beauty of this trilogy is the sheer unexpected nature of what is about to happen in each and every film. THE WORLD'S END is no exception. Without revealing too much, once the boys ultimately attempt the pub crawl, they realize that something has taken over their fair town and it may be up to them to battle this mysterious invasion. There is much to be deciphered from the epic journey at hand. There is a real sense that for Gary King, his real enemy is the shaky nostalgia that keeps him from truly moving on with his miserable life. He lies, he cheats, and he constantly attempts to screw Olivers sister, Sam, played by Rosamund Pike, who makes a charming addition to the film. The entire cast is uniformly great, even the smaller roles of townspeople and assorted freaks. The five friends old teacher, Guy Shephard, is a bit of casting genius, one that I wont give away.

As a director, Wright continues to become more focused, while still managing to invoke a sense of awe in the simplest of shots. It may be a pint being poured into a glass or the act of popping in a cassette tape in a car stereo, but either way he still makes it all engrossing. And when the over-the-top action begins, he capably handles the insane fight choreography to dizzying heights, for which he nearly always succeeds. My only minor complaint is the very ending which takes a slower pace and trades action for introspection. Still, with Kings emotional growth it makes more than enough sense and works towards a satisfying finish. Whether it is the head-crushing, limb-ripping violence or the spry and witty dialogue (with a script by Pegg and Wright) this is a satisfyingly dynamic film that seems a fitting end to what SHAUN OF THE DEAD and HOT FUZZ began.

THE WORLD'S END is gruesomely gooey and wonderfully clever without skimping on real three-dimensional characters. It may not live up to the laugh-a-minute humor that SHAUN OF THE DEAD infused, but it is still incredibly funny. The exuberant amount of energy on display makes for a compelling dichotomy with the very serious undertones of the fear that our characters face. Sometimes the smaller and more personal terrors have the biggest impact. Pegg, Frost and Wright are older and wiser, yet can still spin a delightfully entertaining comedic adventure. In the end, however, the biggest regret is that this year we have to say goodbye to both Wright and Linklaters trilogies. While certainly different, each represents a growth for the talent on and off screen. Whether it was the funny and passionate romance of Jesse and Celine or the hilariously touching connection between Pegg and Frost, each film offered up some of the most well-written and compelling characters to ever grace the silver screen.

Source: JoBlo.com

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1:51PM on 08/21/2013

brilliant!

I know people have been comparing it to Shaun of the Dead & Hot Fuzz but I think its better just look at them separately as they're brilliant original movies & very different. Even though it may be the end of the Blood & Ice Cream trilogy I still hope that maybe they'll come up with a whole other trilogy
I know people have been comparing it to Shaun of the Dead & Hot Fuzz but I think its better just look at them separately as they're brilliant original movies & very different. Even though it may be the end of the Blood & Ice Cream trilogy I still hope that maybe they'll come up with a whole other trilogy
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+3
9:03PM on 08/20/2013
But Before Midnight isn't the end of a trilogy.
But Before Midnight isn't the end of a trilogy.
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6:32PM on 08/20/2013

Another great review, JimmyO

I had this film on my short list of movies I wanted to see, but now it's hit the top of the queue. As others have mentioned, why stop at three, Pegg, Frost & Wright?
I had this film on my short list of movies I wanted to see, but now it's hit the top of the queue. As others have mentioned, why stop at three, Pegg, Frost & Wright?
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3:41PM on 08/20/2013
Funny how two of the best movies of the summer are basically about the same thing, comedies about the end of the world.
Funny how two of the best movies of the summer are basically about the same thing, comedies about the end of the world.
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2:55PM on 08/20/2013

Why stop at three?

I enjoy these movies (well, i'm assuming i'll like the third one).
My question is why stop at three? Why is it the icecream trilogy and not just the icecream series?
These collaborations obviously produce results! Keep going! There's more flavours of cornetto!!
I enjoy these movies (well, i'm assuming i'll like the third one).
My question is why stop at three? Why is it the icecream trilogy and not just the icecream series?
These collaborations obviously produce results! Keep going! There's more flavours of cornetto!!
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2:26PM on 08/20/2013
Definitely seeing this opening night. Was always going to see it in theaters, but after reading the really great and well written review I will be there Thursday night.
Definitely seeing this opening night. Was always going to see it in theaters, but after reading the really great and well written review I will be there Thursday night.
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2:13PM on 08/20/2013
Great film, thoroughly enjoyable.
Great film, thoroughly enjoyable.
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+0
1:08PM on 08/20/2013
I can't wait to check this out this weekend. And it just makes me look forward to what he is going to do with Ant-man
I can't wait to check this out this weekend. And it just makes me look forward to what he is going to do with Ant-man
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1:05PM on 08/20/2013
I'm happy to read this review. Edgar Wright is a one of kind director who has seemed to do what few directors have the competence of doing--making a trilogy that is consistent in quality. I was not even hesitant to see this in theaters, but now I know I'll be there opening night.
I'm happy to read this review. Edgar Wright is a one of kind director who has seemed to do what few directors have the competence of doing--making a trilogy that is consistent in quality. I was not even hesitant to see this in theaters, but now I know I'll be there opening night.
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12:21PM on 08/20/2013

Fandango!

Take my money!!!
Take my money!!!
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12:16PM on 08/20/2013

Nice.

Checking out the full Cornetto Trilogy this Thursday, in theatres. Ba-BAM!
Checking out the full Cornetto Trilogy this Thursday, in theatres. Ba-BAM!
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11:49AM on 08/20/2013

Awesome!

Can't wait to see it. Been waiting all summer. Just purchased my tickets for Saturday night's showing.
Can't wait to see it. Been waiting all summer. Just purchased my tickets for Saturday night's showing.
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11:46AM on 08/20/2013
I can't wait to watch this movie!
I can't wait to watch this movie!
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11:41AM on 08/20/2013

whew

Not sure why I was so concerned given the track record, but I'm pretty relieved to see a 9.
Not sure why I was so concerned given the track record, but I'm pretty relieved to see a 9.
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+6
11:39AM on 08/20/2013

Best Movie of the Summer

I absolutely loved this film. It has all the classic blockbuster elements, while infusing great character work and lofty themetic content.
Bravo, Mr. Wright. I'm ready for my Ant Man now...
I absolutely loved this film. It has all the classic blockbuster elements, while infusing great character work and lofty themetic content.
Bravo, Mr. Wright. I'm ready for my Ant Man now...
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