Liverpool Sound and Vision Rating * * * *
Cast: Simon Pegg, Nick Frost, Paddy Considine, Martin Freeman, Eddie Marsan, Rosamund Pike, Pierce Brosnan, Bill Nighy, David Bradley, Mark Heap, Steve Oram, Jasper Levine, Reece Shearsmith.
Is there nothing that Simon Pegg, Nick Frost and Edgar Wright cannot put together that isn’t just pure British comedy gold? For the first fifteen minutes of the latest film to come from the warped and surreal imagination of Simon Pegg and Edgar Wright, The World’s End, it felt as if though the run had finally come to a crashing and disturbing end. Not so much comedy, not so much a film bought together by some of the most talented people around but the sinking feeling that this was more about a pool of writers and actors finally admitting defeat and waving a white flag but making a tedious journey round of jokes concerning the drinking culture of the U.K.
That is of course till the premise kicks in and from the moment the round-up of old friends and crew is complete, the film takes on a metamorphosis worthy of the so called blood and ice-cream series and what the viewer is left with is a satisfying homage to some of the classic horror films of a by-gone age and a story line that craves attention then till the end.
Simon Pegg and Nick Frost both have this unnerving ability to make you like their characters no matter what, whether that is down to Edgar Wright or the two men concerned will be much discussed but like them you have to. A 21st Century version of Hancock and James but with a lot more boyish glee about them and the unassuming way in which they just ingratiate themselves on your enjoyment of the film. Add to this perhaps the best line up of supporting actors in the trilogy including the excellent Paddy Considine as Steven Prince, the ever diligent Eddie Marsan as Peter and the redoubtable Martin Freeman as Oliver, then what inevitably could have been seen as a lad’s film, one so tedious that retailers would have been asking for the film to come with a brown paper bag as covering if it was to go on the shelf, is actually a very cool, very funny and a very graphic film.
Beyond the supporting cast, are those for which the film actually hangs upon, they give it the reality check and edge of contentment that all great comedies strive for, the ability to have someone for whom seeing on screen brings the ever increasing smile to its broadest rim. In the appearance of the sensational Rosamund Pike as Sam, the wonderfully adept David Bradley and the divine Pierce Brosnan as the grown men’s former head-teacher, the film gets the final piece of quality it fully deserves.
The World’s End may be the final film in the blood and Ice-cream series but surely there is always room for just one more Cornetto?
Ian D. Hall