The World’s End stars Simon Pegg as a down and out loser who reunites with his 4 childhood friends to complete a pub crawl they failed 23 years earlier. Called the ‘Golden Mile”, it consists of twelve bars over one mile in the small town that they grew up in. Most of the friends aren’t thrilled about going as they have adult responsibilities like jobs, wives and kids but somehow he gets them all together. This film starts out like a wacky take on an independent reunion of childhood friends movie but we all really know what is coming.
Simon’s favorite sidekick, Nick Frost is back for their fourth genre parody film together. The first being Shaun of the Dead which tackled zombies, next up was Hot Fuzz, their take on the buddy cop genre and most recently Paul about a friendly alien like E. T. This time the subject matter is basically a robot invasion. It’s actually more clever than it sounds as the story progresses and mysteries are revealed.
The style of these movies is simple : Fit as much humor as you can in the film without stepping on the seriousness of the character’s stories and relationships and the dangers that they are going up against. The movies are very funny but deal with the darker side of the subject matter in question in a realistic and not campy way. This is a good strategy as it provides real suspense and action that you would not find otherwise and creates a nice contrast between the characters and the situation that can be even funnier than if the whole situation was a mockery.
Simon Pegg and Nick Frost do something of a switch here when it comes to their respective roles. Opposite of their usual setup, Simon is the goof-off and Nick is the serious and responsible one. This is apparent from early on in the film. What makes this work so well is the great dialogue written for the group of 5 friends and getting actors that can deliver it. The mixture of pathos and quick witted humor is not the easiest thing to pull off. This is a very enjoyable movie in all respects with an ending that you will probably not see coming.
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