POST Hot Fuzz there was a real buzz when Edgar Wright and Simon Pegg said they would be doing a third film.
Preceding Hot Fuzz’s brilliance was the fantastic Shaun of the Dead and with both the Police-Crime and Zombie-Horror genres roundly stretched, slapped and tickled – Wright and Pegg sharpen their pencils to stab through the eye of the Alien-Sci-Fi genre like a rusty intergalactic fork, with The World’s End.
The key ingredient that made the first two so affectionately brilliant was Pegg’s partnership with Nick Frost and once again their relationship is the fulcrum of this film.
But the dynamics have changed. Frost who made a name for himself playing the haphazard, lackadaisical fool plays the straight, grown up family man. Whilst Pegg who played the exact opposite in the previous two films, is stuck in his adolescent past.
It’s more than just about the duo though. The previous films were greatly aided by the supporting cast. Just as in Hot Fuzz where 007 (Timothy Dalton) was cast as a villain; The World’s End features Pierce Brosnan as a villain.
Whilst Martin Freeman, Eddie Marsan, Roasmund Pike and the Paddy Considine play wing men/woman to Pegg’s juvenile Gary King character, with Considine standing out with a great turn.
The plot meanders pointlessly as the gang goes on a pub crawl only to find everyone in their childhood town has turned into robots.
King wants to complete the pub crawl he didn’t get to during adolescence, despite being under attack from the robots. Cue over the top fight scenes, off-beat dialogues and a tee-totalling family guy played by Frost who decides to “f*** it” and get smashed.
This is several leagues behind Shaun of the Dead and Hot Fuzz. Until two things happen. The first is the ending – where Pegg and Frost’s characters meet the head robot hologram and tongue firmly in cheek they side swipe the whole sub-genre of pointless apocalyptic sci-fi crap that Hollywood has made viewers suffer over the years.
The second thing that elevates the film is the Cornetto wrapper. Yes the trilogy would not have been complete without a gale blowing a Cornetto wrapper onto the face of Frost.
Most importantly The World’s End has the same beating heart (if not the same brilliance) as Hot Fuzz and Shaun of the Dead and Wright and Pegg’s refusal to conform to formula must be applauded.