Anyone daring to see the first two movies from the Blood and Ice Cream trilogy of films — Shaun of the Dead and Hot Fuzz — before going to see the latest, The World’s End, might get a brain freeze. The final film of this series opened with high-spirited laughs and plenty of charm that only the amazing collaborative team of Edgar Wright, Simon Pegg and Nick Frost can do. Their unique take on the horror, comedy and sci-fi genre is laced with a charm that examines the human condition about what it takes to feel alive, a common theme in this trio of films.
While The World’s End follows upon a similar pattern that Shaun of the Dead embarked upon, where the hero is trying to find some focus in his life, this new film goes in a slightly different direction where instead of one mate, four others join in the fray. Sometimes the doldrums of normalcy takes the spice out of just being a rebel. This film nicely satirizes what one must do to drag oneself out of a quagmire, but there may well be a cost:
Gary (Simon Pegg) is trying to bring his past back to life because that’s all he has to live for. He tries to get his old high school chums, Peter (Eddie Marsan), Steven (Paddy Considine) and Andrew (Nick Frost) to finish a pub crawl they embarked on back in their youths. They return to the small town of Newton Haven to begin a spiritual journey.
But after one altercation with a local youth, everything for Gary turns upside down. This film has vague references to Village of the Damned, Bodysnatchers, Wicker Man and The Prisoner that can be appreciated. When these products explores the human condition, those stories are all the more better. Also the wry wit from UK products makes this film very interesting to those who can keep up with the accent and action.
The way this film moves from a product about brotherly love to science-fiction works very well in a subtle level. The tale delivers a soft character development that gets understood much later, and as for what will become of these ol’ chums, that will depend on who you ask and what the denouement offers.
When a few references from the Evil Dead trilogy gets tacked on, the remainder of the film feels out of place. That part really does not work. Maybe those references were made in order to make this film more appealing to American audiences, but that’s hard to say. Had this movie remained hardcore for the audience that it was intended for, then it can remain enjoyable. But these days, with American films dominating, perhaps the commentary here is to say that some movies should remain true to itself than to make it exportable to other countries.
Either way, The World’s End is a fitting conclusion to the Blood & Ice Cream trilogy. Although this series of films is better known as the Cornetto trilogy, not everyone will understand the foodie connection and colour symbolism being made. But after watching this film, perhaps a pint and waffle ice cream cone is in order.