The Merry Trio of Simon Pegg, Nick Frost and Edgar Wright return to finish their ‘Cornetto’ Trilogy with the tale of 5 guys, 1 night and 12 pints.
(Major Spoilers, continue if you dare)
The World’s End tells the tale of Gary King, a late 30s chap whose life is basely a joke. He has no life that we are made aware of and spends most of his time commiserating about a teenage attempt to compete the infamous “Golden Mile”, a 12 stop pub crawl around his home town that ends at The World’s End. An attempt made with his 4 childhood friends that ultimately ended with failure. After which the five of them left home and haven’t really spoken much since. For reasons, Gary and his self-centeredness have forgotten.
Gary decides that what he needs to make his life mean something is to go back home and try again. But he can’t do it on his own, not if he is truly going to compete his ‘unfinished business’. To do it right he has to have his friends with him. So he uses his charm, and not a little bit of con games to convince his buddies to take a weekend and make another go at the run.
From the first moment it is easy to see that Gary is a walking hot mess. While his friends have good jobs, wives etc, he’s got a car so old it is amazing that it still runs (same one from his childhood), and no clue how to be an adult. The whole trip is a disaster in the making. And what a disaster it is when Gary and friends discover that there is something really really wrong with the people in their home town. Like body snatcher wrong. Which it turns out is exactly what has happened. Everyone has been changed by something and it wants to do the same thing to them.
Gary and friends fight for their lives, Newton Haven and perhaps the whole human race in a bad that includes a lot of swearing, a lot of not so slick fighting moves (Nick Frost and the stool hands comes to mind) and a lot of beer. It’s a drunken pile of debauchery with just a hint of seriousness (turns out Gary recently tried to kill himself which led to his desire to finish old business and reconnect with his friends)
The World’s End (which by the by isn’t just the name of a pub) is the last of the three movies in what has been dubbed the “Three Flavours Cornetto Trilogy.” But this isn’t a typical trilogy, the movies neither share a collection of characters (like the Transformers) or a continuing storyline (like the Star Wars films). This trilogy is more a thematic one. All three movies (Shaun of the Dead, Hot Fuzz, The World’s End) are spoofs of major movie styles. And in this sense the Cornetto Trilogy could be viewed as a spoof of the whole multi-film obsession Hollywood seems to have fallen prey to (writing sequels to The Matrix, expanding The Hobbit into 3 films). The movies love to ‘take the piss’ on modern culture including action films and our modern online world. All three movies are also about the power of true friendship with nothing breaking up these guys including zombification, gun toting priests or being body snatched (Martin Freeman still cracks me up). They are about growing up and becoming an adult, about conformity and so on. And most importantly they are about the utter insanity that exists in an normal everyday life if you just open your eyes and look. As Nicholas Angel would say “there’s always something going on”. And of course there’s the easter egg appearance by the tasty Cornetto ice cream treat in each movie (don’t blink or you might miss the minty appearance).
The World’s End, like the previous films, is zany, insane and at times downright stupid. And perhaps the best movie of the summer.
The World’s End