I’m a lucky, lucky boy.
On Friday I entered a competition to win a golden ticket to the Bay Area premiere of The World’s End and a Q+A with Simon Pegg, Nick Frost and Edgar Wright. Not only this though, as the premiere would be prefaced by a double screening of Shaun of the Dead and Hot Fuzz (yes, that’s 9 hours in the cinema). Well, long story short, I won.
The event was Monday @ AMC Metreon in San Francisco and it was….well…fucking awesome. Not only had I never seen Shaun of the Dead on the big screen, but I hadn’t seen Hot Fuzz in over (ballpark) 2 years, so I was almost as excited about those two movies as I was about seeing The World’s End, the final movie in the press-named, Blood and Ice Cream trilogy. This here is a review of the event itself, as well as a few words about the first two Wright movies, as I want to give The World’s End its own post.
Things kicked off at 2pm, and that meant an hour waiting in a queue for the Midnites 4 Maniacs team to hand out the winning golden tickets and wristbands (smug alert). Once we were in, and after a short, inspirational speech about the state of indie film and independent cinemas by our MC (M4M’s organiser/Film History lecturer, Jessie Hawthorne Ficks), the wonderful Shaun of the Dead was presented.
Shaun of the Dead
I had actually already watched this twice this year, however it was still an absolute pleasure seeing one of my favourite movies of all time projected on the big screen in beautiful digital 4K. From the first second to the last the audience was laughing, and this was actually a trend that continued until the trio left the stage at 22:30.
Shaun of the Dead has a wonderful balance between gore, humour and a thick thread of touching realism, despite the film being about a zombie apocalypse. When a quintessentially British movie is being revered by an American audience, you know your film has a universal appeal, and that was regardless of some of the jokes and cultural references being understandable by the only Brit in the room (which was evident when I was the only person to cheer the mention of Britain).
Overlooked by America when it was released (apparently), Hot Fuzz is set in Edgar Wright’s hometown, yet shows a side of Britain that we rarely see; the shooty-in-the-country, balls-out action side. Pegg and Frost play a pair of star-crossed policeman officers, and according to Wright, Frost’s part was originally written as a woman. I honestly forgot how funny this movie was, and seeing it on the big screen for a second time was a revelation. I defy you to use the phrase ‘sleepy England’ after watching this film.
You can tell these guys have a blast working together just by how they talk to each other. Pegg and Wright co-author the movies, yet Frost has the first say on the scripts, which they go into in this video.
There wasn’t too much juicy gossip to tell from this session, except the Cornetto references in the three movies are a result of Wright’s recommended hangover cure and nothing else! I fucking love these three movies, I fucking love these three guys, and I fucking love Midnites 4 Maniacs for choosing me to experience the magic of the Blood and Ice Cream trilogy on the big screen.
My The World’s End review is coming later today (PST), I just need to formulate words that make me sound reasoned and not like I am jerking off.