Pegg is Gary King, former Sisters Of Mercy lovin’ high school cool kid who never got over how life post-teens didn’t match up to his ambitions. In an attempt to relive the glories of his youth he gets his 40-pushing best buds – Nick Frost’s corporate lawyer; Paddy Considine’s business owner; Martin Freeman’s estate agent and Eddie Marsan’s family business employee – back together for one last go at the hometown 12-pub crawl that marked the end of their hope-filled days.
The drama between the five friends is strong – particularly King and Frost’s Andy, who has a grudge to bear against his old friend – as the crew contemplates how they measured up to their teenage selves as they approach middle age.
Pegg is rightly cast as the funny man, which plays to his strengths after his straight man role in Fuzz, and it’s as fast-paced, quirk-filled, zany and offbeat as you would expect. Some ‘chain pub’ bar room brawling with Andy, bar stools clenched in each hand, is an excellent middle England meets The Matrix moment. But with the shift into sci-fi territories as the inhabitants of former stomping ground Newton Haven show a sinister side, comes a uneven shift in sensibility.
Some top surprises and genre nods will delight, though. And if it is to be the group’s swansong, then it is a fittingly puerile and grown-up way to go out.
Good for: Fans of quirky Brit comedy, sci-fi nods and ice cream jokes
Starring: Simon Pegg, Nick Frost, Eddie Marsan | 15 | 108mins | Out July 19