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Pirates of the Caribbean: The Curse of the Black Pearl (2003)

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Ratings: 8.1/10 from 578,139 users   Metascore: 63/100
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Blacksmith Will Turner teams up with eccentric pirate "Captain" Jack Sparrow to save his love, the governor's daughter, from Jack's former pirate allies, who are now undead.

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Title: Pirates of the Caribbean: The Curse of the Black Pearl (2003)

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Top 250 #222 | Nominated for 5 Oscars. Another 28 wins & 71 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
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Giles New ...
Angus Barnett ...
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Joshamee Gibbs (as Kevin R. McNally)
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Storyline

This swash-buckling tale follows the quest of Captain Jack Sparrow, a savvy pirate, and Will Turner, a resourceful blacksmith, as they search for Elizabeth Swann. Elizabeth, the daughter of the governor and the love of Will's life, has been kidnapped by the feared Captain Barbossa. Little do they know, but the fierce and clever Barbossa has been cursed. He, along with his large crew, are under an ancient curse, doomed for eternity to neither live, nor die. That is, unless a blood sacrifice is made. Written by the lexster

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Plot Keywords:

pirate | blacksmith | caribbean | love | curse | See more »

Taglines:

Prepare to be blown out of the water. See more »


Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated PG-13 for action/adventure violence | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

 »
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Details

Official Sites:

| |  »

Country:

Language:

Release Date:

9 July 2003 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

P.O.T.C.  »

Box Office

Budget:

$140,000,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend:

$585,859 (South Africa) (19 September 2003)

Gross:

$305,388,685 (USA) (26 December 2003)
 »

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

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Color:

Aspect Ratio:

2.35 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Johnny Depp wore contact lenses which served as sunglasses so he wouldn't be squinting in the sun all the time. See more »

Goofs

When Elizabeth discovers that the pirates are cursed, a pirate is seen sitting on the capstan playing a concertina. The concertina was not invented until 1829. See more »

Quotes

[first lines]
Young Elizabeth: [singing] Yo, ho, yo, ho/ a pirate's life for me/ Yo, ho, yo, ho/ it's a pirate's life for me/drink up me hearties, yo, ho...
Mr. Gibbs: [surprises her by coming up from behind her] Quiet, missy! Cursed pirates sail these waters. You want to call them down on us?
Norrington: [sharply] Mr. Gibbs, that will do!
Mr. Gibbs: She was singing about pirates. Bad luck to sing about pirates, with us mired in this unnatural fog... mark my words!
Norrington: Consider them marked.
Mr. Gibbs: 'Aye, Lieutenant.
[as he moves off]
Mr. Gibbs: Bad luck to have a woman on...
See more »

Crazy Credits

There is a short scene with the monkey at the end of the credits where he steals a piece of Cortes' gold and becomes a skeleton. He then bites the screen. See more »

Connections

Referenced in Le code a changé (2009) See more »

Soundtracks

Yo Ho (A Pirate's Life for Me)
Words by Xavier Atencio
Music by George Bruns
Performed by Lucinda Dryzek, Keira Knightley and Johnny Depp
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

See more (Spoiler Alert!) »

User Reviews

 
Depp for Emperor?
27 November 2005 | by (S.F.) – See all my reviews

I am nearly fifty years old. A sober grown man. With children. Children with whom I have now sat through hundreds of movies. Many of which I have enjoyed. And I am not completely hardened in my sophistication. The opening music to The Lion King brought tears to my eyes when my little ones were but wee tots. But still, these are after all just children's movies. In another life, I would never have seen them. And, really, one can't take such movies too seriously, can one?

And so, this summer, after the ritual badgering, I dutifully trudged into yet another Disney "adventure" movie. Named after that tired old ride in Anaheim I first went on in 1965. I mean really, how much can you expect?

And then, it happened. The swirling intoxication. The stunned feeling. What? Who? How? Was this a movie? Or a religious experience? Perhaps more like an addictive experience...

I cannot remember ever willingly paying to see any movie not starring a relative of mine more than twice, and I can count those movies on one hand. I have now seen "Pirates" four times. The only thing keeping me from seeing it again is the sense that this whole thing is just getting out of hand. I cannot get enough of it. It's like walking into a painting that you never want to come back out of. My children ask, with a note of concern in their voices, "Dad, you really like Pirates of the Caribbean a lot, don't you?"

And that Depp fellow. My God. I never had any idea who he was, but his name sounded like something created for a pubescent cover-boy for magazines published to hook thirteen year-old girls on make-up and bad music. Wasn't Depp the name of some hair-goo product back in the 60s?

I am a straight male. I have several good friends who are gay, but have never fantasized about any gender but the female. But now I understand how women can experience swooning crushes on male film stars. He is simply extraordinary. So sly, so seductive, so canny! I read an interview in which Depp said he went through a slight depression when he had to stop playing Captain Jack Sparrow. I can see why. His inventiveness and sheer pleasure in inhabiting the character come through in every frame. How can I admit to my children that I now troll through fan websites about a former teen heart-throb?

I often don't even watch the Academy Awards, and I certainly never have any emotional investment in who wins.

Except for this year.

Go Jack.

And, in a time when many big-budget movies are little more than a hodge-podge of loosely- connected "money shots" this movie puts all the pieces together, with a sense of fun and light-heartedness in special effects that are simply dazzling. I find myself laughing with dizzy appreciation when Barbossa barks out, "You'd best be believing in ghost stories, Miss Turner, you're in one!" and the grinning skeletons come into view, with Badelt's pounding score keeping time to the beat of their maniacal deck-swabbing. And then there's the scene of the pirate-ghouls slithering up from the darkened sea on the mooring cables of the Dauntless, like infernal cats stalking their prey.

And now to the music. I can just hear the effete aesthetes dismissing this score, as Mr. Zimmerman anticipates with his winking "overproduced by" credit on the cover-liner. "Bombastic." "Overdone." "Absurdly Stupendous."

Well, perhaps it is, for those who spend their lives evaluating such things. To me, it is absolutely transporting. I first listened to it while doing a work-out on a rowing machine and found that I tripled my usual distance. It was like mainlining some hazardous tachycardic amphetamine.

Once again, the children were wondering, "What's up with Daddy? Is he OK?"

Perhaps I am just losing my grip, having an adolescent movie get to me this way. But when those final credits roll, and Captain Jack narrows his eyes and says, "Now, bring me that horizon. Drink up me hearties, yo ho" and the music swells ... it is difficult to put into words the effect it has.

At this point my children have to yank me forcibly from the theater, lest I persist in watching the credits to the bitter end, and bid good-bye to the little monkey once more, wiping tears of exultation from my eyes.

This is not just another "entry" in the summer blockbust sweepstakes. It is an exquisite work of fantasy and inventiveness, a true classic, on the order of "The Wizard of Oz." I do hope Depp's performance garners not just awards, but a place in the pantheon, something we old fogies -- and our gently fogeying children decades hence -- will show to our children and grandchildren like a revealed treasure. I cannot recall any movie having such an effect on me.


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