Ranking Edgar Wright’s ‘Cornetto’ trilogy

Edgar Wright

Edgar Wright’s Cornetto Trilogy, which started in 2004 with Shaun of the Dead, might be one of the best comedic cinematic trilogies to ever exist. The trilogy is named after the brand of ice cream the characters eat in all three films. Wright’s new film Last Night in Soho is not a comedy but does have a couple of comedic moments that are reminiscent of his earlier work.

With that in mind, let’s take a look at that earlier work, ranking the films in the Cornetto Trilogy from worst to best. The trilogy consists of Shaun of the Dead, Hot Fuzz, and The World’s End.

The World’s End

The World's End

The weakest of the three great films, 2013’s The World’s End, felt like a rehash of the two movies that came before it. Honestly, the plot kind of backs that claim up. Five friends reunite to participate in a pub crawl they attempted as teenagers. Simon Pegg and Nick Frost play Gary and Andy, respectively, and the same themes of friendship that were a part of the main plot points for both Shaun of the Dead and Hot Fuzz are again featured here, albeit with the dynamics changed. The twist comes in when they realize that their hometown, which they’ve returned to for their pub crawl, has been taken over like in Invasion of the Body Snatchers

The film has solid jokes, but none are as memorable as those in other films. The cast is great but Simon Pegg stands out, mostly because it’s his character’s storyline that’s being played out. Overall, The World’s End is a good movie but falls to the bottom of the Cornetto Trilogy ranks.

Shaun of the Dead

shaun of the dead

The film that made Edgar Wright a household name, Shaun of the Dead is a horror comedy starring Simon Pegg as Shaun and Nick Frost as Ed, two friends who lead their lives as losers and layabouts get caught in the middle of a zombie apocalypse. As if that wasn’t enough, Shaun’s girlfriend Liz, played by Kate Ashfield, broke up with him the day before the zombies appeared.

A comedic take on zombie tropes, Shaun of the Dead is easily one of the best horror comedies ever made. The film is filled with memorable scenes and moments, from Shaun and Ed throwing vinyl records at zombies to the eventual group of survivors meeting their counterparts. But the reason the film is not at the top of this list is that while it’s comedic and there are memorable scenes, it still falls a tad short to the next film in the series.

Hot Fuzz

Hot Fuzz, a buddy cop comedy action film from 2007, is one of the greatest comedies ever made. It felt particularly painful to put this ahead of Shaun of the Dead, but it needed to be done. Again starring Simon Pegg and Nick Frost as Nicholas Angel and Danny Butterman, respectively, the film is about a city cop who is doing too good of a job and is therefore sent on assignment to a small country town with nothing to do⏤until a series of murders start to occur.

Everything about this film is brilliant. The characters are all unique and hilarious and the suspense surrounding the mystery is great, but the sheer amount of great jokes puts this in the top spot. The tomato sauce bit, Aaron A. Aaronson, Peter Ian Staker (P.I. Staker), yarp, the greater good⏤there are just so many great and quotable moments in this film, not to mention the bonkers shootout at the end of the film and the graphic nature in which some people get killed or injured by Simon Skinner, played by Timothy Dalton. The film is brilliant and holds up along with the rest of the Cornetto Trilogy quite well. 

There you have it. Hot Fuzz takes the cake, or the Cornetto in this case. The case for Shaun of the Dead taking the top spot was fairly close, so make sure to let us know in the comments what you think!