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Film review: The World's End

This story was first published in The Straits Times on Sept 20, 2013

THE WORLD'S END (NC16)

ST 20130920 JOPICKS20 3842941

109 minutes

****

The World's End carries on the Simon Pegg-Edgar Wright-Nick Frost tradition of having very flawed, very English characters trapped in an epic crisis found only in a Hollywood movie genre.

Five men meet at the English hamlet in which they grew up to attempt an epic pub crawl, one they had failed to complete as teenagers. Gary (Pegg), the instigator, is keen to relive the time when he was the coolest member of the group, while friends Peter (Eddie Marsan), Oliver (Martin Freeman), Steven (Paddy Considine) and Andy (Frost) come along for reasons of their own. The crawl is supposed to finish at the 12th pub, The World's End. But before they can reach it, the men discover the town's dark secret.

The duo of Pegg (actor, co-writer) and Wright (director, co-writer) have a gift for making moving films about mundane moments inside major events. Pegg's Gary King continues the trio's tradition of creating lead characters with a delusion that makes him a little pathetic and who remains unchanged over the course of the story.

Pegg shares his screen time with a larger cast and they share plaudits for delivering some of the best naturalistic performances of drunken behaviour in recent cinema.

John Lui