Ben's Review of The World's End
The World's End(2013)
Ever since the release of "Shaun of the Dead" in 2004, Edgar Wright has shown audiences his uncanny ability for versatility, wit, charm, and unrelenting humor. The relationship and chemistry that Simon Pegg and Nick Frost display on screen since this time is equally as remarkable. Its been a long time since two comedic talents have been able to play off each other so well and in such iconic fashion. This dynamic duo has been making audiences laugh out loud for nearly a decade, and Wright has finally decided to close out his hilariously original trilogy with "The World's End," a film that not only contains the same charm and firm direction that made "Shaun of the Dead" and "Hot Fuzz" great, but manages to incorporate metaphorical subtleties that really do display the possibilities for Wright to direct and create films for any genre that he wants. When discussing this trilogy as a whole, a friend of mine had an interesting point that I would like to share. Each of these three movies represent great comedies. But to go even further in that respect, each movie reaches out and touches the void of other film genres. While each of these films are satires on that particular genre, Edgar Wright has shown his ability to convincingly command horror, action, and now sci-fi if he pleases. This trilogy can also be seen as an exhibition of Wrights talents in the art of filmmaking as a whole, without staying completely in the realm of comedy. Whether or not this was intentional, its safe to say that these three unique and individualistic pictures have definitely created cinematic memories that will last for quite a long time. "The World's End" is no different. Like its predecessors, it contains constant whimsically concocted dialogue, brilliant pace, and fairly brilliant character exposition. And as always, the wonderful and heartfelt performances by Simon Pegg and Nick Frost endure; a perfect reflection of friendship as whole, through very outlandish experiences.
20 years after a failed attempt to hit 12 pubs in one night, Gary King, played by Simon Pegg, seeks to reunite his childhood group of friends one more time to attempt what they started two decades prior. Everyone in the group in the 20 year period has moved on to something else, trying to the best of their individual abilities to stay away from the town that brought them countless amounts of boredom throughout their young years. King however, hasn't seemed to move on since that memorable evening. Without anything but this new idea guiding him, he'll do anything to down at least one drink at every single pub no matter what the cost. The closest of his friends, played by Nick Frost, has since been sober, never totally forgiving King for what actually happened that night. Throughout the course of their new journey, it becomes apparent rather quickly that things aren't exactly what they seem. As the five friends try to survive the night, they'll learn some things about themselves, as well as their hometown, which seems to have undergone quite a few changes since they left. Per usual, Edgar Wright's execution of this plot is fantastically original. The way that he uses larger than life scenarios to convey a simplistic characteristics is another thing that I truly admire about his directing. The film's plot may seem exciting, flashy, and loud, but what it all comes down to is the relationship between characters that fuel this fire. And that's what makes it so good.
What truly makes this movie, as usually the case, is Pegg and Frost. The perfect equalization of their characters, provided in different form but always remaining brilliant in each three films, makes the content of the movie's story engaging and thoroughly engrossing. Whether Pegg or Frost is playing the irresponsible one, the other amplifies and elevates the material that's written for them. It really is a quality that doesn't come often in filmmaking, especially in this day and age. For these two to do what they have done is a remarkable feat, and through Edgar Wright's guidance, they have made their stamp in the realm of comedy, and in the realm of film. In "The World's End," it is Simon Pegg who really outdoes himself. His performance is not only consistently hilarious throughout the movie, but he actually manages to captivate the audience during the film's extravagant climax. Pegg takes command of the material from the first sequence that he's on camera and doesn't let go until the closing frame. Along with Frost's unique ability to make you constantly smile, there pretty much isn't any room for failure. As long as the starting material is decent, these two individuals will make it perfect. This is what they do best.
Playing on my friend's interesting notion that I shared earlier, "The World's End" serves up as much excitement and tension as it does laughs. You'll actually find yourself anticipating the safety of the characters, wondering how their dynamics will play off each other in crucial moments. The Sci-Fi action sequences, without giving anything away, are as well shot as they are funny. Throughout all of this, nothing crucial is sacrificed. One aspect of the film doesn't outweigh another. This perfect balance of intensity and hilarity serve as a catalyst to promote a truly honest and simplistic principle; one of friendship. Throughout these three films, its friendship that serves as the foreground for the content of each picture. Edgar Wright provides as much down to earth characterization as you would find in a well-done Woody Allen picture. He just likes to spice things up a bit, with a tide pinch of Meta-Comedy to make the film buffs feel right at home. Its a well made film, made by a fan of film. This is the kind of stuff that we need on a regular basis. But, these three works of art will just have to do.
"The World's End" is a great movie. It gives you everything that you need to have a good time. Edgar Wright's comedy trilogy is one of the best in history. Each film contains its own unique set of thrills and laughs, and this picture is no different. What remains consistently charming is the relationship between the characters of Simon Pegg and Nick Frost. These two guys are just a pleasure to watch together. With the right material, specifically by Wright, or by themselves, there's a strong chance that they will make you smile. In an age where comedy is transforming into relentless pop-culture references and by the numbers off-beat slapstick nonsense, Edgar Wright has in his own way given us the perfect balance of refreshing brilliance. What he has proved since 2004, and what needs to be recognized, is that comedies can still be executed without sacrificing sheer artistic integrity and brilliance. Edgar Wright's "The World's End" is a masterful comedy, lead by a most talented filmmaker, and two very talented actors.
Directed by: Edgar Wright