The World’s End

20130506-220056.jpg

Thanks to Midnites 4 Maniacs for putting on an advanced Bay Area screening of this movie, which can be read about here.

Not to be confused with This is the EndThe World’s End is the latest and final offering from Edgar Wright and Simon Pegg, in their series of genre-busting movies that deal with responsibility against the odds. Shaun of the Dead, a zombie apocalypse horror, and Hot Fuzz, an action flick set in rural England, are now actual entries into their genres, rather than being considered ‘just parody movies’. And they are really f*****g funny. Which doesn’t stop in The World’s End.

Gary King (Pegg), and his four mates (Frost, Considine, Freeman and Marsan), reunite for a pub crawl of binge-drinking, epic proportions, but suddenly find themselves at the centre of something that proves out of this world.

And that’s all you’re getting. I am not going to ruin this movie for anyone. I am honestly still smiling (the screening was on Monday) because The World’s End was absolutely hilarious. Pegg and Wright have managed to sign off their trilogy, which is linked in thematics and tone rather than characters, in such style. The characters are wonderfully drawn, entirely believable and deliver some of the most immature yet serious lines in recent cinematic memory. It is evident that the actors are having a blast on set, which bleeds into their lines, and even though the tone is so similar to the previous two movies, it works so well. Paddy Considine perfect as the stoney-faced friend, Frost and Freeman nail their characters, and Marsan is in an unfamiliar, nice guy role; Wright mentioned he wrote Eddy a friendly character because, at a Q+A in Toronto when Marsan was promoting Tyrannosaur, he said he has never had consensual sex on camera.

Thematically, this movie deals with nostalgia and how hard it is to accept change. It deals with letting go of the past and moving on, which is embodied with consummate ease by Pegg in his character Gary King. Wright himself said that the movie also presents a reality of how things, such as the English high street, are being replaced by branded familiarity; the Starbucks effect. It owes a debt to Monty Python towards the end as things get unfathomably incongruous, and it ends up in places that aren’t telegraphed as things are in Shaun of the Dead.

The cinematographer who worked on this movie also worked on Scott Pilgrim, so the colours are rich and lighting is perfect for the genre. We have shots of pub fights that aren’t epileptic as in Hot Fuzz, but are choreographed to the bone; the camera lingers as the proverbial shit hits the fan in the second act. Once again, the music choice is perfect, but that does not come as a surprise as Wright knows how to formulate aural tone as well as visual.

The World’s End, being such a huge fan of Wright’s movies, is the perfect film for me. I got all nostalgic for my youth, as well as my local pub and a pint of cold amber. I laughed from the very first second until about five minutes ago, and every time I think about it I wish I was back in the screening. It doesn’t come out until 23rd August in the States, and I can assure you I will be first in line. And then when I get back to the UK in September I am going to watch it again.

See this movie.

Advertisements

Midnites 4 Maniacs presents Shaun of the Dead, Hot Fuzz & The World’s End

1002138_1396407007244633_1863424876_n

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

SHAUN

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).

Hot Fuzz

FUZZ

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.

Q+A

thetrio
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.