There is something special about hanging out in a bar with a group of your closest friends, and it typically ends up with you reminiscing about the good ol’ days and how everything was perfect back then. Everyone has an “it can’t possibly get any better than this” moment and sharing a few pints with your best buds is a surefire method to get the memories flowing.
Shaun of the Dead is one of those movies you reminisce about. It’s a damn near perfect film in both storytelling and execution and the beginning of what would eventually become known as The Three Flavours Cornetto Trilogy among Edgar Wright, Simon Pegg, and Nick Frost fans. While not as good as Shaun, Hot Fuzz replaced the zombies with Michael Bay-sized explosions and action. Now finally, The World’s End comes around full circle and reminds us of the good times and laughs we’ve had together. It’s a hilarious, action-packed bar crawl with alien robots. Does anything else really need to be said?
The Golden Mile is an epic 12 stop pub crawl in the town of Newton Haven that Gary King (Pegg) and his four friends attempted but failed to complete while teenagers. Flash forward to today and Gary is no longer the king he once was. While his friends have all matured and settled down with steady jobs and families, Gary is stuck living in the past. Peter (Eddie Marsan) is a partner at the family car dealership with his father. Oliver (Martin Freeman) sells houses for a living. Steven (Paddy Considine) works in the construction business. Andrew (Nick Frost), Gary’s former right hand mate, has traded in his rugby uniform for a suit and tie and works a cushy corporate job. In an effort to relive the glory days of their teenage years, Gary gets the old group back together for one last time to return to Newton Haven and conquer the Golden Mile. Getting drunk and passing out is the least of their worries, however, when they find out that the town has been taken over by alien robots who want to take over their bodies.
The World’s End is nothing but one hilarious joke after another. The dialogue is often times so fast that it’s easy to miss something because you’ll be laughing so much. Simon Pegg is a master at wordplay and always has a witty comeback in his arsenal. He’s not the only one either; everyone in the group shares the spotlight. What makes the film so funny is that they have the ability to make even the simplest of lines downright hilarious. Their comedic timing is impeccable, and there is never a dull moment.
The action is more akin to Shaun of the Dead than Hot Fuzz with blue alien guts splattering pub walls and limbs being torn and tossed every which way. It can be a bit chaotic at times and the camera can become a shaking behemoth, but it’s entertaining nonetheless. Watching Nick Frost imitate Bane breaking the Bat is a sight to behold as he puts his best wrestling moves to use on the aliens.
While the film is fun for everyone, die hard Cornetto Trilogy fans are going to get extra enjoyment out of all the in-references and jokes that have spanned the three films. Fence jumping and ice-cream cones are some of the more obvious ones, and I suggest doing your own mini Golden Mile and watch both Shaun of the Dead and Hot Fuzz before finishing up with The World’s End. It’ll only make all the better.
The World’s End is like a finely crafted brew that has been aging for years, waiting for the right moment to be tapped. You can’t help but wonder, “Does it get any better than this?” The answer is a resounding no.