Following on from the universally liked ‘Shaun of the Dead’ and ‘Hot Fuzz’, comes Edger Wright’s third in what’s been titled (and made cameos in the films) ‘Cornetto trilogy’ with Simon Pegg and Nick Frost of ‘THE WORLD’S END’.
One interesting thing which hits you immediately with this is it starts out as some bitter sweet coming-on -age- comedy-drama which slowly descends into almost a weird Sci-fi idea which could have been from a ‘Twilight Zone’ episode or some form of a Terry Pratchett novel. Critics have noted this mix of the two, to them feels a little too abrupt. Personally I didn’t find it much a issue, as I thought the Sci-fi acted well as a metaphor to the characters roots and drama. I instead thought the issue lies in Simon Pegg’s Gary King character, which – while yes he is annoying (as it is his character not wanting to let go of his past), the main hero role he plays to the plot doesn’t feel convincing or likeable (in a silly way) enough, particularly with what happens in the latter half of the film with his character.
In the long run though, you can tell this is Edger Wright’s most personal film to him in this ‘trilogy’, rather than indulging on cinematic passions like with ‘Shaun of the Dead’ and ‘Hot Fuzz’. You get a feel that Wright himself is one of these characters on screen and what it was like to be 18 and how that is the beginning of what you could become in life. And while there is elements of pathos in this which could be lent to previous two films in the ‘trilogy’, its ultimate triumph is the sense of ‘Britishness’ to it with its pop culture referencing and even soundtrack. This should be applauded as this could have gone down the root of Simon Pegg’s and Nick Frost’s last collaboration of ‘Paul’, which had that missing (the humour was more broadened for American audiences). This is evident in its play on British Pub myth and taking the piss on American slang (a line of ‘’What the Fuck does WTF Mean?’’ comes to mind).
Generally this is a good comedy which does it job, which with the coming-on-age pathos, feels metaphorically grown up compared to ‘Shaun of the Dead’ and ‘Hot Fuzz’. Will it and is it as beloved and endlessly quotable (and used in pop culture) as the previous two? No it isn’t. The ending is perhaps a little too cleaver for itself which will isolate a portion of its audience and poor Rosamund Pike is underused even if she is very good with one of the better British casts I have seen (Martin Freeman, Michael ‘’A Field In England’’ Smiley, Paddy ‘’I sound like Gary Barlow in this’’ Considine, Eddie ‘’Who’s In Everything’’ Marsan) and there is a fine cameo in there as well. Ultimately it should be viewed as a enjoyable ‘’pet project’’ for Wright, which does its job well enough.