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FILM FANS: 'World's End' takes too long to set up, crazy story

EDITOR’S NOTE: Film Fans features local residents reviewing the movie of the week: “The World’s End.” Want to be a film fan? Email features@gwinnettdailypost.com.

3 stars out of 4 stars

The opening photo and video montage of “The World’s End” introduces us to five friends who are living in a stereotypical English town. For the first third of the film, it appears to be that we are going to witness a reunion trip of these friends as they travel through The Golden Mile, an epic pub crawl ending at the establishment known as The World’s End, the twelfth bar on the crawl. But, about a third of the way through the crawl, there is a sudden shift in the story telling and we are off on a new adventure.

No spoilers here, but suffice it to say that this is a sci-fi comedy (with lots of cursing, blood and guts). I enjoyed going into this film experience not knowing the director’s style or reading reviews that reveal the full plot. The acting is solid across the board, including a terrific supporting turn from Rosamund Pike, the only female actor with dialogue of any significance. Watch for an uncredited Pierce Brosnan who makes a brief appearance about half-way through the movie.

The humor is very British in style. If you are a fan of “Doctor Who,” buddy-flicks and don’t mind some off-color language, you will probably enjoy “The World’s End.”

— Paul Tate, Sugar Hill

1 and 1/2 stars out of 4 stars

Well, kiddies, it’s August — that time when film studios start dumping the movies they feel are of marginal quality at best. The Romans referred to August as the “dog days” of summer. And sure enough, “The World’s End” is a dog — with fleas.

Featuring nearly the same British comic cast as “Shaun of the Dead” (2004) and “Hot Fuzz” (2007), “The World’s End” finds Gary (Simon Pegg, Scotty from the new “Star Trek” movies) wanting to recapture the fun and adventure of his high school days — mainly drinking lots of beer and getting into lots of trouble. Gary pines to reunite his old gang (Nick Frost, Paddy Considine, Martin Freeman and Eddie Marsan) for a blitz on their old hometown of Newton Haven. The goal is to complete some unfinished business: a pub crawl called The Golden Mile taking in 12 pubs in one night that ended prematurely in 1990 on the tenth pub.

While Gary hasn’t moved on with his life, the rest of The Five Musketeers have, having responsible jobs and families — yet they cave in and end up indulging Gary. As the mates re-create the crawl, and get increasingly drunk with each stop, they find out that the old adage is true, that you can never go home. In this case, most of the folks in Newton Haven have been replaced by alien robot look-alikes. And that’s when the mayhem really begins, when Gary and Co. have to save mankind.

I really liked the earlier two movies from Pegg and Frost, and was anticipating more fun with this flick. However, “The World’s End” takes WAY too long setting up the reunion, which means it’s well into the movie before the alien robot action abruptly kicks in. They should have either made a reunion and pub crawl movie, or an alien invasion movie, but not mash them into one film. I’m recommending that this dog gets sent to the pound.

— Tim Weekley, Suwanee

0 stars out of 4 stars

When I review a movie, I purposefully avoid knowing much about the movie in advance. The only thing I knew about “The World’s End” was that it was about five chaps reprising their younger days in a pub crawl. I had to Google what a pub crawl was and thought it sounded like a drunken middle-aged version of “The Breakfast Club” meets Britain.

“The World’s End” stars Gary (Simon Pegg) who yearns for the good old drunk doper days in high school, when life was easy and without consequences. Problem is that to Gary, who’s closing in on 40, every day is still a drunk doper day without consequences. He convinces his four high school chums, Andy (Nick Frost), Oliver (Martin Freeman), Paddy (Steven Prince) and Eddie (Peter Page) to go back to their hometown and fulfill their dream to do The Golden Mile which is, to have a pint of beer (or shot of whiskey) in each of the 12 pubs in the town in one drunken night, concluding at the elusive The World’s End pub. Four of the five friends have long ago moved on from their shiftless years and now have successful lives and businesses, while Gary is stuck in the past. Gary is certain that by finishing the quest of The Golden Mile, even 20 years later, that this accomplishment will give him the closure he’s yearning for, getting his life on the right track.

I would have liked the movie if it would have stayed with this storyline, but it jumped the shark when they encounter robot zombies that bleed blue blood. Holy mermaid, Batman.

“The World’s End” had a very long set up — which resulted in being the only part of the movie that I liked. The robot zombie portion wasn’t connected to their pub crawl, and I hated the rest of the movie.

— Myra Simons, Buford