Tuesday, 31 May 2011

Pirates of the Caribbean: Dead Man's Chest Review

When a movie like the Curse of the Black Pearl makes as much money as it did, you know that there is going to be a sequel.  Not only that, but you know that the sequel will be highly anticipated and will also make a ton of money.  That ensures a third movie.  What the producers did here was smart.  Knowing that a third movie was a given, they decided to make the story for Dead Man's Chest part one of a two part story.  That way they can focus on telling an entertaining story without having to wrap anything up in one movie.  This allows for a little more depth in the writing.  It also keeps the viewer on the edge more because they can do absolutely anything to the characters and delay explaining anything until the next movie.

It is this that makes Dead Man's Chest the best of the first three movies (I have yet to see the fourth one and am going tomorrow night.  I also hope to watch At World's End tomorrow afternoon and have a review up before it is clouded by the fourth one).  For many of the same reasons I gave in my review of X2, Dead Man's Chest is at least better than Curse.  First, it is more intense and darker.  I am amazed that they could get darker than an undead crew that turns to skeletons in the moonlight bu they managed to do it with a crew of aquatic/human weirdos led by an evil "manopus."  Second, the action is better.  The scenes with the Kraken are superb and the special effects are better all around.  Third, they introduce a cool new character in said manopus, Davy Jones.  The myth of Davy Jones goes back farther than I know and Dead Man's Chest does a great job of telling it.

This one also takes what was really successful from the first and pushes it further.  Johnny Depp's antics as Jack Sparrow are more animated and funnier especially when he is escaping from the savages.  However, they still focused way too much on the love story between Will Turner and Elizabeth Swann.  It pains me to say that because I really like Kiera Knightley; just not in a role like this.  Everything she does seems forced and wooden.  I do not, however, like Orlando Bloom.  He's nothing more than a pretty boy with little talent.  I firmly believe that the only reason he was cast in the first place was to make it easier for guys to get their girlfriends to consent to see these movies on a date night.  This sub plot was so interwoven into the story of the first movie that I really see no way they could have taken back a notch.

All in all, I say see this movie.  You do have to watch Curse first to avoid too much confusion (I did review that one as being kind of difficult to watch).  But I would say it is worth it.

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