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The Pirates of the Caribbean franchise is a big McDonald's thing of the
movies, where it comes slapped with the greasy paws of Jerry
Bruckheimer and ready to sail off into matinée serial territory. This
could be fine except that as each passing film goes on (with a couple
of minor exceptions to scenes I'll mention) the quality of the series
lessens with each film. It also doesn't help that this time the
franchise loses one of the interesting things going for it in Gore
Verbinski's visual/storytelling sensibility. While he ended up making
parts of Dead Man's Chest and At World's End cumbersome with
super-sized plots not worth much (albeit parts of Dead Man are a lot of
fun, and the Davy Jones Locker segment of 'World's' is a perfect slice
of surrealism), Rob Marshall just doesn't really have it in him to take
the series where it could go.
This latest effort, On Stranger Tides, misleads in its title (not too strange), and is still stuffed with over-plotting with double crosses and other shenanigans and new characters. The premise should be simple, and it is: there's word of a Fountain of Youth(TM) off on an island somewhere, but as Captain Jack (Depp, of course still around once again) is off to find it he has to contend with Blackbeard (Ian McShane) going also for it. This could make enough for a movie, albeit lifting a bit already from Indiana Jones and the Last Crusade. And there's a little extra intrigue with Blackbeard's daughter, Angelica (Penelope Cruz), being Sparrow's kinda-sorta-not-really love interest of yore. And of course the mermaids, who for at least five minutes when revealed as the blood-thirsty hybrids they are make the film full of vigor and excitement.
But then there's other stuff padded in to make it once again an over-long effort (not as long as At World's End thank goodness, but too long still), with Barbosa, Geoffrey Rush's most hammiest of ham-bone characters (whether it's also in his acting I'm not sure), also chasing after the Fountain but for more shady reasons as he appears up front as an actual "Captain" in the Royal British navy or whatever.
AND there's another goody-too-shoes along the lines of Orlando Bloom, though this time not him (thank foodness) but some other bland guy I don't remember his name at all and then he gets into some entanglement with the one mermaid they catch to take to the fountain. Why the mermaid? It's complicated... or, rather, not really, just a tear of a mermaid and some water and a couple of glasses and that's it... but it's more complicated than it seems, after a while.
Frankly, memory of this is spotty. Not because of it not trying, but because it just didn't try hard enough. Marshall's direction doesn't really try for anything that inventive like Verbinski was able to, and directs action in the most cardboard-cut-out of styles that one could see in any Bruckheimer actioneer. If that floats your boat, you might enjoy the movie a lot, but the action and excitement of past films (save for an escape scene early on with Sparrow through the streets of London, or some such town, and the mermaid scene mentioned earlier when they first appear and attack the pirates) is lacking here.
So, therefore, much of the movie has to rest on the appeal of its performers. How does it fare? Taking out of account whoever that bland-priest-kid was, and the mermaid girl equivalent (aka Bloom/Knightley 2.0), we got a couple of the regulars with Depp and Rush, and they both have their moments for sure - Depp especially has to carry a lot of scenes (arguably, even, the whole movie overall) on his shoulders, and for what it's worth in the fourth go at it he can still hold attention and get some chuckles... not laughs, mind you, just chuckles at this point. Honestly why they keep Sparrow's father, -the almost inimitable Keith Richards- as such a walk-on player on these films is beyond me as he could save portions if it was bumped up to a small role. Rush, meanwhile, is often relegated to exposition even when things should get interesting.
Curiouser still is McShane and Cruz. McShane could have made this a really memorable villain, but he seems to be tired through a lot of the performance, sometimes getting a little energy to yell during a scene, and not enough to make one feel that this is such a "Bad Man" as he calls himself. Cruz does better as a firebrand tough-girl sort who can kick butt and take names when need be, but isn't given much of a character either except near the end when there's some wicked double-crossing going on between her and Sparrow on a beach. It's a fine scene that the two actors have - and it's even a moment that shows why they're such *great* actors in other performances - and yet a little too little too late. By then the plot has turned its gears, Hans Zimmer's surprisingly generic score has gone through its motions, and mermaid tail (pun intended) is sorely lacking.
One small note to Marshall's credit, he gets ONE really fantastic WTF cameo during the city-chase scene with Sparrow when he lands in one of the carriages crossing town. I won't say who it is, but it's a self-conscious regal-joke that had me laughing harder than almost anything else in the movie. And a scene like when Sparrow argues over a big-giant-scary jump off a cliff into a river should have been the tone of much of the movie... and it isn't. It's not too terrible to hate (sorry House Next Door guy, this probably makes me a half or quarter of a c*** then), but to recommend it as anything other than at best a rental or a lazy summer afternoon nothing to do cable TV view would be false.
The 4th installment of the PotC series gives us another sea adventure
featuring Sparrow and Barbossa. Will and Elizabeth are not in this film
instead we are introduced to two new characters and rivals of Jack
Sparrow: Angelica and the notorious Blackbeard!
This movie, IMO, is not quite as good as the first two films but still had me captivated by it's story. It is a refreshing change, twist, to the series. All in all, PotC: On Stranger Tides is well worth watching. Sparrow and Barbossa tend to be the core characters in the series and they will not leave you disappointed with this adventure.
The fourth film of the "Pirates of the Caribbean" franchise is only
loosely connected to the other ones. Johnny Depp and Geoffrey Rush are
still there, Knightley and Bloom aren't. The story is typical for the
series and I think the viewer gets what he can expect: loads of
adventure, action, sword fighting, wondrous creatures and pirate
marvels, the movie has it all. It's fun, but it could improve on that,
it's also not too violent, making it a nice family movie. The acting is
fine, thanks to the many great actors here, with appearances such as
Judy Dench, Richard Griffiths, Geoffrey Rush and the like. The
landscape, the props, the music and special effects are as great as
they were in the other three installments.
I give it a 7/10.
*** This review may contain spoilers ***
I'm probably not the only one that groaned upon hearing that they were
making a new "Pirates" movie (And more are planning to come), but is
this one worth the watch? We'll begin with the definitive answer, No. I
enjoyed a few moments where the movie excelled and as the series
progressed, they had become more focused in tying loose ends and
focusing on performances. However, this film continues to deliberately
set up more impossible scenarios, and the slapstick levels of the
previous entries is jacked up significantly this time around.
Johnny Depp is reportedly getting tired of the Jack Sparrow character, and in a way so am I. He has only gotten worse since the second movie, and the star who shines the most now is Geoffrey Rush. When he plays eccentric, he delivers way beyond expectations. The newer cast members are somewhat the least likable. Gone are Orlando Bloom and Keira Knightley, in come Penelope Cruz (Well-casted enough) and Ian Mcshane as a terrific rendition of Blackbeard, yet they do nothing with the character. Forgive me when I say I don't know their names, but the actor and actress whose spontaneous romance as a priest and mermaid was so damn cringe worthy it felt like I jumped into "Twilight" (2008).
Well there's a quest for the fabled "Fountain of Youth". However, in order for the magic to work they must succeed in having two people drink from two identical magical chalices, whilst also acquiring a mermaids tear. If successful, one will inherited all the other persons previous and remaining years (Those are some pretty challenging guidelines). I never remembered any of this when hearing any fables of the Fountain, but that's a lot of tasks. Luckily our heroes will have a lot to do, yet all we must do to succeed is watch two hours of this tedious bore.
Okay, I understand sarcasm is finding its way into my review, but honestly when writing all that down wouldn't yours also? Anyone who has seen this must have felt gob smacked and in the wrong way. But for the bad things I've said, there are some good scenes and fun to be had. After putting up with a load of coral reef monsters in the previous instalments, it's good to at least know they calmed down on all that. There are a lot of scenes that really blew me away such as the chase scene through London, and when the characters finally get to where their going, the stylistic look of this movie gets a thumbs up from me.
Final Verdict: Good enough, but didn't really add anything new either. The 3-D sucks and this franchise just has to finish now, but as we know, it won't happen that easily. 5/10.
The film itself is okay, but not as good as the last three! 6/10
But why 1/10? This is the rating for the German Movie.
It's all about th money:
Markus Off: "I have a legally justifiable, financial Additional claim to Walt Disney found the German with the Copyright related. "Has the following set of Marcus Off But even more in himself: "Walt Disney denied this additional claim, because Walt Disney is of the opinion that synchronizing a Actor is not an artistic work. You would still be below the Level of a newscaster and was devoid of any artistic Creativity."
- Translated with Google!
German source on Moviepilot
*** This review may contain spoilers ***
Well, here we have the fourth Pirates of the Caribbean and said by the
way, the worst of all.
I am a true fan of this series, but I can not defend this disaster sequel too.
After the original trilogy, and now turn to independent adventures of Jack Sparrow.
Orlando Bloom is not. Well, I do not dislike the character and the actor, but neither will get to have really missed.
Keira Knightley is not. Well sorry, but at this if I miss a lot. For me this girl is immensely more beautiful, sweet and best actress Penelope Cruz very overrated.
The original crew, except Mr. Gibbs, disappears along with the Black Pearl. Neither Mr. Cotton, and the sympathetic bald dwarf, or those two pirates with you were your initial case in the three movies, nothing.
So we find in this new film?
Johny Deep as Jack Sparrow if he returns. Well, unsurprisingly, not the movie directly there. Keep up a good performance and is once again the best of the film, as it should be.
Geoffrey Rush. Essential. This character really should not be missing in any sequel because with Deep, who is unable to start more laughter and sympathy among the public. May this great actor last and last to delight us with his talent.
Penelope Cruz. No disappoints. The truth is that their performance is quite correct. What I do not understand is why his character seems at first that you will have an important role and then be slowly reduced. Her character is interesting and half the writers have failed to draw with too much confidence.
Ian Mcshane. Disappointing. So clear. I was expecting a really scary and imposing Blackbeard but has not. The dubbing is terrible to start putting a ridiculous voice that did not hit anything with the character. Then there is the performance Mcshane, great actor by the way, just as he convinces that scenes, while others are low intensity seen on their part. Davy Jones was cool in every scene and every sentence he said, was memorable, but this does not convince really terrified. Very disappointing.
Kevin McNally as Mr. Gibbs. I must say that this character is the prettiest and funniest of the series, and for me it has become imperative. I hope to continue in the following parts.
The other actors are largely untapped. Uncle Vernon in Harry Potter appears as King George, only very briefly, in spite of being quite comical. completely wasted.
The legendary Judi Dench only makes a cameo, so there's nothing to say. Oscar Jaenada only appears briefly at the beginning and end, as the Spanish ¨ ¨ without much to say the truth.
Keith Richards is also very sporadic although it irremediably sympathetic dad Jackie.
The film as a whole?
For very loose truth. Nothing impresses nor really surprised, sometimes it is boring and uninteresting, and only wins when Deep Rush and appear together on screen. The subplot between the missionary and the mermaid is revolting and not interested or god.
The sequences in Blackbeard's ship look promising, but ultimately nothing happens remarkable, except a fight shot with very little skill.
Rob Marshall is not a bad director, but has failed to make us forget Gore Verbinski, especially its lack of energy when providing strength, humor and interest to the film, something not seen in previous.
Interestingly photography becomes as in the first, bright and colorful, leaving aside the greyness and more off of the two sequels.
The soundtrack becomes the same, with additions of Spanish guitar.
Finally, a fourth part, which I was quite disappointed, despite having a good start, and more or less correct outcome, lacks true epic visual spectacle as were his predecessors, and the lack of previous cast members make it less attractive to the viewer.
A sequel that's actually not such, but a spin-off of Jack Sparrow for the moment has not convinced me or fun as I expected.
We will have to wait for the fifth, ¨ Dead Men Tell Tales ¨, to see if this was just a little bump unimportant, or notice of an inevitable decline.
I really hope it's the former. Thank you.
Judging by the comments of others, I wasn't alone in disliking the
third instalment of the most successful movie franchise based around a
Disney ride. It is perhaps understandable then, that I was a little
hesitant to indulge in a fourth outing. They were getting too silly,
too effects-heavy and too indulgent - even Johnny Depp was starting to
irritate more than entertain. I was hoping that they might have toned
it down a touch for the fourth film but no - this film still has too
many plot threads, too much going on and Depp still goofing around as
though his career depended on it. And given his recent poor run of
form, there may be some truth to that.
Captain Jack Sparrow (Depp) resurfaces in London to rescue his old running mate Mr Gibbs (Kevin McNally) from the gallows to go hunting for the legendary Fountain Of Youth. However, in the usual chaos that accompanies Jack, he winds up being reunited with the beguiling Angelica (Penelope Cruz) and in the service of the villainous Blackbeard (Ian McShane) aboard the Queen Anne's Revenge. Gibbs is also reunited with Captain Barbossa (Geoffrey Rush) who is pursuing Blackbeard for his own purposes in the services of the British Royal Navy. But ahead of all of them are the Spanish and as they get closer to the Fountain, they must contend with murderous mermaids and each other's back-stabbing as well.
"Pirates Of The Caribbean: On Stranger Tides" maintains the frenetic pacing that dogged the last instalment, "At World's End". Sparrow is the epicentre of anarchy once again as characters bounce off each other as though a witty quip was deadlier than a blade (not that many people die in the first place - this is still Disney, after all). For a time, it's good to be reacquainted with the silver-tongued sea dog but after a while, Depp does begin to grate a bit. The real improvements are in the supporting cast - Cruz does enough to suggest that she'd be good for yet another sequel while McShane is brilliant as Blackbeard, erasing the memories of the wishy-washy romance of Keira Knightly and Orlando Bloom in a tide of bona-fide evil. Other than the cast changes, it's otherwise business as usual and that's kinda my issue with this film. It's far too content to go through the motions without bringing anything you haven't seen before to the party besides mermaids who, in classic movie tradition, have just enough hair to cover the necessary areas. Ironically for an adventure movie, it just feels too safe.
That said, die-hard fans of the series won't be disappointed too much. It does everything you'd expect from a "Pirates Of The Caribbean" movie and assuming you crave everything Sparrow then this will do the job. But as the series has gone on, it's gotten more bloated and unseaworthy and while "On Stranger Tides" is a slight improvement on "At World's End", it is still a far cry from the glorious first film which had a real passion and excitement behind it. But in this film, every comical escapade Captain Sparrow finds himself in or every ship that seems to have an undead crew (they're zombies this time, apparently), there is a sense that everyone was resting far too heavily on their laurels and focused on making do instead of making a classic. No matter how many times a dog jumps through a hoop, the trick itself doesn't change that much and it gets less impressive each time. I have my doubts that this will be the last in the series but Disney can only keep treading water for so long before the franchise sinks beneath the surface for good.
The return of Captain Jack for a few years and is it terrible no but is it great no, it fits somewhere in the middle ground of just good. This film shows Jack Sparrow, his old love Angelica, her Father the notorious Blackbeard, the British led by former pirate Captain Barbossa and the Spanish Armada all searching for the fountain of youth for their own reasons. Now even though in my opinion the character of Jack Sparrow has ruined Johnny Depp's acting career but he is great at it and you can tell how much fun he has being Jack Sparrow and his performance in this film is great. Now even though some didn't like Keira Knightley in the other films I believe that she is so much better then Penelope Cruz in this film and I believe her performance to be one of the big negatives in this film. However, Ian Mcshane as Blackbeard was an inspired choice and he is truly evil and menacing in this film continuing the tradition of great pirate villains. The return of Geoffrey Rush as Barbossa is fantastic and just like Depp you can tell how much fun he has in this role and his chemistry with Depp continues their tradition of being fantastic. The secondary character of the missionary and the story of him and the mermaid was terrible in this film and was just such a huge distraction that I hated. For the story, it is not good at all, it is in fact all over the place. There is just too many people going after the fountain and some are not even in depth also as I mentioned before the secondary story of the missionary and Mermaid is terrible. The script is pretty decent with Sparrow, Blackbeard and Barbossa all have great lines but there is some weak dialogue especially by Cruz. Just like the rest of the pirates films the style is fantastic, the cinematography is great and the soundtrack is awesome. This film is a mixed bag and I hope the next one is better.
Eight years ago we were introduced to a scallywag, a pirate of sorts, a pirate by trade Captain Jack Sparrow. Who would have thought that a big-time attraction from Disneyland & Disney World could spark a dynamite in the hearts of moviegoers? Gore Verbinski took that risk and the torch was passed down to a man who directed musicals and what not Rob Marshall. Well, I say, way to go Rob. You have done the crew a very BIG debt of gratitude. You took the reins and you shook them hard to make this movie the best of the 4. The cast Geoffrey Rush, Ian McShane (thank you for portraying Blackbeard the way it was supposed to be played), the beautiful and talented Penelope Cruz and most importantly the man who needs no introduction the man who played Edward Scissorhands, the man who played Willy Wonka, the 21 Jump Street actor from all those years ago to a rising star and a beloved actor the incredible Johnny Depp. From the story line, to the special effects, to the great music (Hans Zimmer, again you have proved your worth.) I give this movie a resounding and magnifying ARRRRRGGGGhH (a 10).
*** This review may contain spoilers ***
I had to see this one twice in order to fully comprehend it. Johnny Depp and Penelope Cruz run away with the film as Jack Sparrow and Angelica, Jack's soul-mate and perfect foil. Great chemistry between the two characters. In fact, she almost outshines Johnny Depp (Jack). On cable with commercials, the film seems to go on forever. What makes the plot so confusing is that Blackbeard and Edward Teague look very similar because both have flowing gray beards. One of the pirates (Barbossa) has a peg leg, so he is more easily singled out. The plot is a jumbled mess of the supernatural,voodoo, zombies and other undead, magical powers, the Fountain of Youth, English and Spanish explorers, and so many swashbuckling sequences that it made my head spin. Want a plot summary? Read it elsewhere as there are over 400 other reviews and a great Wikipedia summary as well. Did I enjoy it? yes. The romance between the Evangelist Philip and the "good" mermaid, nicknamed "Syrena", was haunting but almost unnecessary to the story. How she is going to rescue her dying love is unclear, as the mermaids here have a "taste" for human flesh. She drags him under the sea not to drown him, but to save him. This is never explained. Conquistador Ponce De Leon stops by to destroy the Fountain of Youth, as "only God can grant eternal life". Angelica and Blackbeard, both mortally wounded by a poison-laced sword, drink the fountain waters from silver chalices. Angelica lives and Blackbeard dies a horrible death and is turned into a skeleton. A mermaid tear in the magic water makes all the difference! So many questions here. The mermaid's rescue, as mentioned earlier. Jack's ship, The Black Pearl, is bewitched and miniaturized as a ship in a bottle. How to enlarge it, using mumbo-jumbo black magic? Will Angelica ever be rescued from the tiny island where Jack marooned her? Jack's Voodoo doll washes ashore and she picks it up. Fade to black. To be continued? This movie gave me a headache. An "8" because I enjoyed it in spite of itself. Alas, too many plot holes and shortcomings, me matey. Keep yer eye peeled for yet another sequel in 2015? "Argh!"
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