Suspension of Disbelief: The World’s End
Welcome to suspension of disbelief, a weekly segment where we review movies, books, games and anything that takes our fancy. This week, Eddy doesn’t go on a pub crawl, because everyone should drink responsibly. That said, he does review a movie about one, kind of-ish. The World’s End is the third movie in Edgar Wright’s ‘Cornetto trilogy’ starring Simon Pegg and Nick Frost, alongside Martin Freeman and Pierce Brosnan, and it’s hilarious.
Following in the footsteps of Shaun of the Dead and Hot Fuzz, The World’s End is a comedy set in an apocalypse, in this case robot alien things later called ‘blanks’. The concept behind them is actually really imaginative, but I don’t want to get too spoilery here so I’ll leave that well alone. What I will say that is kind of on the spoilery side is that the end of the movie, for me, was odd. That’s not because it didn’t make sense, it was the only place it could really go, but it’s certainly not the endings we’re conditioned to expect by our culture.
I know I’ve already started jumping all over the place, but let’s go back to the beginning. Gary King (Pegg) is an alcoholic stuck in the past, in a time where he was the cool kid and the world revolved around him and getting drunk. While the rest of his class have grown up and moved on with their lives, he’s been stuck in a world that doesn’t fit him, in denial of the fact that he’s been growing up and has achieved little. In memory of the good times, and in pursuit of the one goal he has left (completing the pub crawl that ends at The World’s End), he calls upon the old gang for one last hurrah to regain a sense of purpose. That may sound depressing, because it sort of is, but the movie doesn’t dwell on that so much as it shows his evolution. From denial and trying to revive the life in which he was (if you pardon the pun) king, to acknowledging how lost he’s become and how much he needs his old friends, it’s sweet without being preachy and it’s funny without sacrificing plot, which I really admire. In addition, as the characters go from dismissing him as dragging them down to realizing that he’s reaching out for them, there’s some really beautiful stuff that most comedy films just don’t give you, especially one-offs.
That’s not to say that this isn’t a funny movie, because it is, it’s hilarious, but some of the best jokes are plot-driven and even foreshadowed, which is astonishing to see work. There’s classical humor in there too however, even a nice bit of slapstick starring Simon Pegg and a fence, and it all comes together to make this a refreshing continuation, closing chapter and new movie in the series of films that’s made Simon Pegg and Nick Frost household names (at least in the UK, I can’t speak for my fellow bloggers across the pond).
So yes, I’m a fan of this movie. I like the aesthetics of British pubs, I like comedy movies, I like movies with heart, I like sci-fi, I like Simon Pegg, Nick Frost and Martin Freeman, and I like cornettos. What’s not to like here?
I give this five pints out of five.
(image credits: sky.com, syfy.co.uk)