TATM Classics #161: The World’s End & World War Z

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THE WORLD’S END **** (2013)

20 years after attempting an epic pub crawl, five childhood friends (Simon Pegg, Nick Frost, Martin Freeman, Paddy Considine, Eddie Marsan) reunite when one of them becomes hell bent on trying the drinking marathon again. They are convinced to stage an encore by mate Gary King (Pegg), a 40-year old man trapped at the cigarette end of his teens, who drags his reluctant pals to their home town and once again attempts to reach the fabled pub, The World’s End. As they attempt to reconcile the past and present, they realize the real struggle is for the future, not just theirs but humankind’s. Reaching The World’s End is the least of their worries.

Like with everyone else, I agree that Shaun Of The Dead and Hot Fuzz are two of the funniest movies that have come out in the last few years so, it’s a hard act for The World’s End to attempt to copy the greatness that Shaun Of The Dead & Hot Fuzz accomplished.

Well, not only did they succeed at it but I’m going to go out on a limb and say that The World’s End is my favorite film in the trilogy.

Yeah, I know that’s hard to believe considering how great both Shaun Of The Dead and Hot Fuzz are but The World’s End is the one that I absolutely love.

There’s just so much of this movie that’s great to watch. The characters are great, the story works, the visuals are impressive, and it’s just a great fun movie.

I love Simon Pegg in this playing Gary King, the leader of this mission. He’s this guy who just doesn’t give a fuck and loves to be the egotistical asshole that he is. You can see that he’s so desperate to complete this mission and that he also cares about getting the gang back together to make it happen but at the same time, he’s so arrogant that he really doesn’t care about what the gang’s been up to since the last time they met.

I don’t know if anybody else saw it but when I was watching Pegg in this, it really seemed like he was channeling the Nostalgia Critic from the That Guy With The Glasses anniversary movies, where he just goes overboard from what he usual is.

Pegg just makes this character so great to watch, he may be my favorite new character that I’ve seen in a while because of how great he is.

The rest of the cast also has a lot of great moments in the film as well and everybody plays off each other so well.

The comedy is very good, there’s a lot of great funny one-liners from all of the cast and each one of them had at least one great moment that I liked.

The visuals in this are pretty good, the robotic designs are pretty damn good for a movie with a budget as small as this has.

The twists and turns are pretty good and it’s a welcome sign considering how shitty some of the more latest twists in movies have been really mishandled.

The World’s End is one of the best movies of the year in my opinion. It may not be up there with Side Effects, The Last Stand, or Warm Bodies but it’s pretty damn close. Great characters, a great story, great visuals, a lot of great comedy. It’s an amazingly funny and entertaining film that works of all levels.

WORLD WAR Z *** (2013)

Life for former United Nations investigator Gerry Lane (Brad Pitt) and his family seems content. Suddenly, the world is plagued by a mysterious infection turning whole human populations into rampaging mindless zombies. After barely escaping the chaos, Lane is persuaded to go on a mission to investigate this disease. What follows is a perilous trek around the world where Lane must brave horrific dangers and long odds to find answers before human civilization falls.

One thing needs to be said right off the bat, the movie is not based on the book, and that was one of my big problems when I saw the trailers because you have a book with a lot of great material that screams out great movie but the writers decided to not go with that idea and instead went with an original story.

Okay, so now everybody wants to know, did I hate this movie that I trashed its’ trailers on earlier the year?

Well….actually no. Overall, I found myself really enjoying the movie.

Yes, it has two major flaws to it and I’ll just spill those out right away.

One, Brad Pitt’s family in this is really annoying. I’m not going to be harsh on the kids because I think this is their first acting jobs so I’ll let it slide but more importantly, Pitt’s wife, played by Mirelle Enos from The Killing. She’s really annoying mostly because of how the acting is done on the actress.

Yeah, as you can probably tell from this and my What’s Wrong With This Trailer? for Robocop, I’m not the biggest fan of The Killing or its’ main actors. It may be up there with Low Winter Sun as the worst show that AMC has put on because it’s nothing but a retread of Twin Peaks, a far superior drama series and you’d expect better from AMC after Mad Men, The Walking Dead, and especially Breaking Bad.

But anyway back to World War Z, my main problem with Pitt’s wife in this is that she has two of the worst lines in the entire movie and it’s because Enos is try to act much harder than she needs to and putting more dramatics to her role that really doesn’t need to be there. Yes, you’re known for starring on The Killing but there’s a little thing called “stretching your acting abilities.”

The biggest flaw with the movie is the decision to make the zombies computer generated and I think I can speak for everyone when zombies are much more scarier when they look real, not computer generated. You’d need the best people from Weta Digital or Industrial Light And Magic to make CG zombies work but here, they look fake as hell.

That does effect the key scenes and how they should be presented. As I mentioned in the early article about the film’s trailer, one of the stupidest scenes in the trailer is the airplane scene because of how cartoonishly bad the final bit of it is when the zombies and people are flying out of the open part of the airplane…and it looks just as bad in the movie as it does in the trailer.

If you’re going to do a sequel, please consider real zombies effects, like on The Walking Dead. It’ll be more time consuming but you know what, you’d be saving much more money and the zombies would look more realistic.

Now, let’s get to the good things about the movie because there are good things.

Besides Pitt’s Family, the rest of the cast does a pretty good job with the material given. Brad Pitt is very likeable in this and he’s actually doing a great job in this. We also get good performances from Matthew Fox, James Badge Dale, and David Morse.

The story in this is also well put together, they do a pretty good job of giving us an entertaining story despite not adapting the actual book and the movie, for the most part, has a pretty good three act structure…up until the final act, and as you remembered from the film’s production, the final act had to be consistently rewritten until the master of terrible third acts was brought into the picture, Damon Lindelof.

Okay, before anybody gets mad at me, I don’t hate Damon Lindelof as a writer but I’m sorry, I need to call out his shitty third acts because they always ruin the movie. Cowboys & Aliens, Prometheus, Star Trek Into Darkness. All three of these movies had terrible third acts that weren’t thought up well at all and ended up almost destroying all those films from being any form of good.

That being said, while the last act of World War Z is bad, it’s not as bad as the other movies Lindelof has helped to write for and it does manage to keep up the pace of the rest of the movie and it at least makes more logistical sense than the other movies Lindelof has helped to write the third acts of. I mean, come on, why would you keep Khan alive after everything he did in Star Trek Into Darkness?

So, what are my overall thoughts on World War Z? I think it’s really enjoyable, not a perfect movie by any means but still enjoyable. A majority of the acting is pretty good, the action is pretty decent, the story does work well, and it does manage to keep your interest throughout the entire film.

I just wished that the zombies could’ve looked more realistic and the family was more likeable.

Hell, maybe they’ll fix things up whenever they do the sequel.

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