The long-awaited third instalment of Simon Pegg and Edgar Wright’s ‘Cornetto Trilogy’ finally hits cinemas, and it gives the fans everything that was needed to conclude this enjoyable trio of films, which began in 2004.
The story begins with Gary King (Simon Pegg) telling the tale of ‘the golden mile’, a mission that consisted of a pub crawl of 12 pubs in his home town of Newton Haven, which he and his four friends: Andy, Peter, Oliver and Steven attempted when they were teenagers. Unfortunately they never made it to the last pub on the map, The World’s End. Now, 20 years later, Gary wants to get the old gang back together to finish what they started, and after he tells them a few lies, they all sign up. However the town seems to have changed slightly, nobody recognises the boys, and they get the eerie feeling that the inhabitants want nothing more than to have them leave Newton Haven. As their crawl continues, it appears that something is definitely wrong with the town as they are constantly attacked by robots who have been created to look like the community. Although scared, and quite drunk, the gang realise that the only way to escape is to act normal and finish their pub crawl once and for all, by finally reaching The World’s End.
Once again Nick Frost joins Simon Pegg on the silver screen, however unlike the previous two films in the trilogy, Frost this time has a hatred for Pegg, the reason for which is later revealed in the film. At first it was tricky to picture the duo not being friends, because of the banter between them, on and off the screen. However Frost plays his part really well, convincing the audience that he is just sick and tired of Gary King acting like a child and not letting go of his teenage years by growing up. It got me thinking, maybe this is replicated in real life due to Pegg’s child-like behaviour, but seen as Frost is a big-kid himself, I highly doubt this is the case.
The trilogy has given us three great films which have attempted to reinvent different genres by adding comedy into the mix. The first being Shaun of the Dead in 2004, which starred Simon Pegg and Nick Frost as two friends who get put right in the middle of a zombie attack in London. The film is rife with references from classic zombie films, directors and one-liners. It was quite an enjoyable watch for an avid zombie film fan, but used proper British comedy and romance to give the film a different feel. It was the first rom-com-zom (romantic-comedy with zombies). The second genre which the duo tried to bring to a newer audience, was the police-action genre ,with Hot Fuzz in 2007. Which once again starred Simon Pegg and Nick Frost, this time as police officers working in the quite village of Sanford, Somerset. However all is not as it seems with the overly friendly townsfolk as unfortunate accidents begin to happen all over the village. Now with The World’s End, ‘Pegg’ and ‘Wright’ have jumped on to the apocalyptic-film band wagon and have succeeded in creating a science-fiction film, filled up with raw British comedy. Which, although will go down a treat with the English audience, maybe seen as too gritty for our friends across the pond, as our comedy is not understood by Americans in the same way we see it. Take for example the American version of The Inbetweeners.
The World’s End was always going to be compared to Shaun of the Dead and Hot Fuzz after it was released, due to them having the same director, writers, actors and comedy. Still, although they are all so alike in various ways, they seem like three completely different films, perhaps because of the genre change. They all offered something different and it did not get boring towards the end of the trilogy. Edgar Wright and Simon Pegg attempted to make each film connect with their genres (zombie/police/sci-fi), and make them an homage to the films which had inspired them. Each film has its own highlights and amazing scenes. Shaun of the Dead has the long morning walk to the shop without noticing a single zombie and it’s Don’t Stop Me Now zombie fight scenes. Hot Fuzz has the hilarious southern, foul-mouthed Andys and the gigantic police/civilian shoot at the end, and The World’s End has one of the biggest bar fights I’ve seen in a British comedy, plus whilst the chaos is happening Simon Pegg is trying to finish his pint, the scene just worked so well, as did the fight sequences. All three films have their high points, and are great in their own right. If I had to pick a favourite it would be Shaun of the Dead, mainly because I am quite a lover of zombie films, it brought the zombie genre once again into the limelight, and every film reference was placed so well.
Once again Pegg and Wright’s film showcases some great British actors, to name a few: Eddie Marson (Hancock/Sherlock Holmes/Law and Order UK), Martin Freeman (Sherlock/The Hobbit/The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy) and Paddy Considine (Dead Man’s Shoes/Hot Fuzz/The Bourne Ultimatum). There are also plenty of extras which you can spot from various British films – Pierce Brosnan and Bill Nighy, and plenty of people who have been extras in Pegg and Wright’s previous films, for example David Bradely, who plays the mumbling farmer, Arthur Webley in Hot Fuzz.
The World’s End will have you in stitches as Simon Pegg and the gang spurt out more great comedic one-liners, whilst they attempt to conquer their drunken quest, all the while fighting off an army of robots, and it proved that British comedy and science-fiction can go together quite well. Thus ending the ‘Cornetto Trilogy’.