The Blood and Ice Cream trilogy or the Cornetto trilogy, whatever you want to call it, could not have come to a more perfect close than with The World’s End. Simon Pegg and Edgar Wright have written a masterpiece that mashes genres and simultaneously puts them, and Pegg’s co-star Nick Frost, in the history books.
Why, you ask? Because if you put all three films together -- Shaun of the Dead, Hot Fuzz and The World’s End -- one can see the birth of a gifted filmmaking trio, their development into stellar students of cinema, and finally their graduation into what is by all accounts an ascension into greatness.
From the first The World’s End trailer, one could tell that this journey into the Wright-Pegg-Frost triangle would be something special.
Through a flashback we learn that these five friends, who grew up in a small hamlet nestled into the English countryside, spent one of their last teenage nights attempting to complete “The Golden Mile.” There are twelve pubs in their town, all within said mile, and they were going to have one pint in each. Only, they never reached the end.
Flash forward decades later and the quintet have gone their separate ways and are at different places. Pegg’s Gary feels that life would have been different if he was able to complete the aforementioned pub crawl. So, he gets the idea to “get the band back together” and complete a task started all those years ago.
It is not easy, and given the different places his mates (besides Frost, the outstanding cast includes Martin Freeman, Eddie Marsan and Paddy Considine) are in life, it will take some doing. But, as you probably can discern from the full-length The World’s End trilogy trailer, the gang has another go at it… but their town is not how they remember.
And it is not because time has erased those memories… the community has been taken over by robots.
By injecting humor, thrills and quite a lot of alcohol, Pegg and Wright have outdone themselves. They have achieved with this third film in their trilogy what few filmmakers have with a three-film structure before them. This third movie manages to be the best of the three, while still possessing traits of the first two and expanding on them. And most importantly, the third film must manage to stand on its own as a great film -- regardless of its being part of a series. The World's End does all of the above and so much more.
The way Edgar Wright has grown as a filmmaker is astounding. The promise he showed with the first two films in the trilogy, plus his uncanny work on Scott Pilgrim vs. The World, shows that the director is merely scratching the surface of his ever-growing potential. Imagine where he’ll be in a decade? Heck, he may be the first director to break through Oscar’s distaste for rewarding comedies!
And Pegg and Frost’s comic chemistry also seems to only be growing with age. Our The World’s End review finds that Frost plays a character in the film that is unlike any he’s played before and he handles it with such command. And although Pegg’s Gary has traces of parts he’s played before… it still is a performance that exists in another stratosphere of excellence.
It is early in the movie year 2013, what with “Oscar season” knocking on our door with the arrival of September, but Movie Fanatic can firmly say that The World’s End has gotten itself a reservation on our top 10 list of the year.
We raise a glass to you Frost, Wright and Pegg… cheers, indeed.