Archives for posts with tag: Simon Pegg

Grade B +

Manny’s Movie Musings: Simon Pegg and Nick Frost star in “Shaun Of The Dead,” a British comedy/horror about two best friends who are caught in the middle of a zombie apocalypse in their hometown.  First order of business, find a way to rescue Pegg’s mom and ex-girlfriend, then head to a secure place: The Winchester Pub!  But as everyone knows, there’s what you plan for, and there’s what really happens.  Fans of British comedies and zombie flicks will love this great collaboration of the two genres, giving its core audience lots of funny jokes, zombie action and gore, silliness, and a few well acted scenes of drama.  My most memorable, movie moment of “Shaun Of The Dead” is the scene when Pegg’s group runs into another group of survivors led by Pegg’s friend; and both groups are nearly identical!

— M

Combine “Invasion Of The Body Snatchers” (1978 version) and “Shaun Of The Dead” and you get “The World’s End.”  Only the end product isn’t as good as any of the two first mentioned movies.  I’ll tell you why later.

“The World’s End” is about a 40-something-year-old loser (played by Simon Pegg) whose life is so crappy that all he has left is his goal to relive a night when he was much younger and cooler and he went bar hopping with 4 of his best friends.  The previous goal of the bar hopping: to visit 12 pubs and drink 1 pint per pub, all in one night, with the last pub named The World’s End.  That goal was never accomplished as the five dudes were too wasted.  But decades later, Pegg decides he wants another go at it; and suckers his 4 friends into joining him.  Unfortunately for all of them, the town that the 12 pubs are located in have been taken over by aliens who disguise themselves in human form.  And you either join or die.

Die is what I wanted Pegg to do, because his character is an incredible jackass.   Most people will either run away from him or beat him into a coma.  Bottom line, a hero who is not likeable makes the audience want to see him die instead of prevail against alien invaders.  Luckily we have Nick Frost, best friend of Pegg, who is funny and likeable and provides much of the heart of the movie.  As for the alien invasion storyline, it doesn’t kick in until about 30 minutes into the movie!  I was sitting in my car watching this and wondering if I made a mistake regarding what the movie was about.

“The World’s End” has many jokes all throughout the movie, but many of them misfire.  There are many impressive, fighting sequences that border on what you see in Hong Kong martial arts movies; and once the action starts, it hardly stops.  So, just like a train, it’s off to a slow start; but once it gets going, it really gets going.  Bonus points for the movie’s intense pacing during the 2nd and 3rd acts.

**Slight spoiler alert here**  My most memorable, movie moment of “The World’s End” is the scene when Pegg and his friends confront the leader of the alien invasion.  For those of you “Star Trek” fans (like me!), it’ll remind you of those many scenes when Captain Kirk or Captain Picard has to plea to a much more powerful being that humans deserve to live.  Only Pegg does it in a very crude, funny, and raucous way that finally had me cheering for him.

So, fans of “Shaun Of The Dead” and “Hot Fuzz,” go and watch this movie.  It’s not great, but it’s good enough.


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Tom Cruise, my favorite Scientologist, stars in the 4th movie of the “Mission: Impossible” series.   It may as well be called “Mission: Possible” since the good guys always win.  I’ll even settle for “Mission: Probable.”  Here’s the plot: terrorists blame the Impossible Mission Force for a bombing in Russia the way a Guatemalan maid gets blamed for missing jewelry; and now the disavowed IMF has to get the bad guys before the bad guys start launching nukes at the U.S. in order to start World War III.

The movie is good — nothing special about it.   It seems to be your generic, action/adventure/spy movie that doesn’t get to you emotionally.  There were 3 parts in the movie where it did try to tug at my heartstrings, but I didn’t feel much from them.  Most of the action sequences are great, and we get to see places like Dubai, India, Russia, and Prague as the movie was shot in those locations; and there are funny parts involving Simon Pegg, but…it’s not enough.  This is most likely my first and last viewing of this movie.

My most memorable, movie moment of “…Ghost Protocol” was the sequence where Cruise is using special gloves to climb the glass walls of a very, very tall building in Dubai.   One of his gloves craps out like a cheaply made toy from a 99 cents store, and he has to use all of his might and skills to not only keep from falling, but to climb several floors.  I don’t like heights (maybe that’s why I was born short!), so seeing Cruise’s precarious situation at such distance from the ground gave me that nervous, dizzy, excited, scared, want to pee in your pants feeling that people get when they stand close to the edge of a cliff or building.

Coming in at second place for the memorable movie moment award is the lack of U.S. intervention when a Russian sub launches a nuke.  There is no mention of what the U.S. is doing (which most likely is launching nukes of our own to kill those Vodka-loving people).   Therefore, even if the IMF manages to keep the Russian nuke from hitting the U.S., our missile launches toward Russia would produce even more launches from Russia, and on and on.   Time to shave and clean your ass so you can kiss it goodbye.   What?  Maybe the U.S. failed to notice the launch of a Russian nuke from a submarine, you ask?   Buwahahahahaha!  If you believe that then you probably believe that you’ve never eaten cat or dog from a Chinese restaurant.


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