Movie Reviews

‘The World's End’: A hard but fun lesson on reliving your youth

By Wang DexianMovies - 20 September 2013 12:00 AM | Updated 2:51 PM

‘The World's End’: A hard but fun lesson on reliving your youth

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Rating: 4.5 stars out of 5

The final chapter in Edgar Wright's ‘Cornetto Three Flavours’ trilogy has arrived.

It sees him reuniting with Simon Pegg and Nick Frost, the two leads from ‘Shaun of The Dead’ and ‘Hot Fuzz’.

Unlike most trilogies, this isn't a series of continuing stories like ‘Star Wars’ or ‘The Dark Knight’. It is simply three standalone films that share similar elements, actors and themes. 

And much like the previous two films that preceded it, ‘The World's End’ is a genre-bending exercise that combines classic science fiction concepts, social commentary and kick-ass action with strong emotional relationships and character work, all bundled into a neat 109-minute-long package.

The story revolves around Gary (Pegg), a possibly alcoholic man who is still living wild and free days that stretches into decades, after graduating from secondary school.

He remains transfixed on that very day he graduated, considering that night he spent with his buddies, Peter (Eddie Marsan), Oliver “O-Man” (Martin Freeman), Steven (Paddy Considine) and Andy (Frost) to be the greatest night of his life.

The quintet tackled the Golden Mile, a legendary pub-crawl of 12 pubs in their hometown of Newton Haven. Despite falling short, Gary has a ball of a time.

Resolving to relive that night with his friends and to complete the Mile, he seeks to reunite everyone, who are all in drastically different places in their adult life.

Once back in their hometown, the group slowly discovers that even though the place doesn't seem to have changed at all, many things just aren't the same.

If there is anyone who could make this quirky film work, it would be the trio of Wright, Pegg and Frost.


Having combined zombies with slackers in ‘Shaun’ and the homage to all action movies in ‘Fuzz’, Edgar Wright and company have consistently shown that they have the ability to combine their love of genre cinema with compelling storytelling and of course, laugh-out-loud antics – although it does take a certain comedic palate to appreciate some of the very British humour on display. 

Stellar writing from Wright and Pegg features many things that fans of the duo have come to love, including lots of symbolism, pay-offs on repeated usage of bad jokes, and fights in pubs.

Choreographed by Brad Allan who has worked with Jackie Chan, the action even showcases Pegg and Frost's attempts at moves that wrestling fans will no doubt appreciate. 

Much like an actual pub-crawl, the film is inherently chaotic, but that is its charm.

Underneath the chaos is level of attention to detail and meticulousness that the viewer might appreciate on a repeat viewing or two. True to trilogy tradition, there's a line that basically encapsulates everything that will happen in the film. Look out for it.

Everyone on screen seems to be having a good time, which is exactly what the audience gets from start to finish.

The film is not afraid to be crazy but more importantly, brave enough to play it straight when the situation calls for it.

The result: a madcap comedy that also possesses a strong emotional core... much akin to the bittersweet aftertaste of a great ale.

‘The World’s End’ opens in cinemas 19 September 2013