I may not be much of a Disney fan, but I’ll admit, they have some guts behind all those Disney smiles. They put all this money to make a movie based on a ride, at a theme park! Little did Disney know back in 1967 that the late and great Marc Davis’ designs would once again be opened, dusted off used in a feature film.
Coming from a background that is filled with a Animation Art history, I found it quite infuriating that Disney would take Marc Davis’ art from the 60’s and use it right after he died. It’s also kind of a coincidence that Disney is now releasing Haunted Mansion in November as well, everything based off of Marc’s designs form the early 1960’s and now being reproduced in film form after his death. But that’s another story for a other day.
Anyways, turning a ride into a movie, how did they do it? Well they actually came up with a fun script, something better than nothing. Johnny Depp plays the infamous Jack Sparrow, who having lost his ship lands in a town and attempts to get back on his feet but stealing a new boat. One thing leads to another and Sparrow crosses paths with Will Turner (Orlando Bloom) in his attempt to escape, who becomes a major part in the curse of the Black Pearl, which is a ship they are in search of. Why are they in search of the Black Pearl? Sparrow and Turner are going to work together to try and save Elizabeth Swann (Keira Knightly) from the pirates of the Black Pearl ship. Barbossa (Geoffrey Rush ), the captain of the cursed Black Pearl, thinks that Elizabeth is the key to freeing their cursed souls. Simple, and effective.
Gore Verbinksi equals one thing to me, and that’s justice. He did Dreamwork’s remake The Ring justice and now he did Disney’s Pirates of the Caribbean justice as well. Between Verbinski and a cast that doesn’t quit, The Pirates of the Caribbean turned out to be one hell of a good time. Verbinski was a perfect choice for director of Pirates for one reason, his ability to produce a dark and a light movie at the same time. He’s shown through movies like The Mexican and The Ring what he is capable of. He mixes genres with ease, he takes the directing he would use for an action packed pirate flick and blends it together with something he would do in a horror flick, like The Ring. The moonlight shows the cursed pirates of the Black Pearl’s true selves, skeletons. He uses a blue tint just like in The Ring, which contrary to belief looks excellent on screen. His use of the blue adds some intensity to the film, the unsettling feeling of death.
If anyone should be complimented, it’s the choreographer department. The fight scenes were just excellent, and Verbinski’s use of “the moonlight” made for one hell of a fight scene. Jumping in and out of the moonlight with swords blaring and crossing between skeleton and human form was friggin excellent!
As usual Johnny Depp put on an impressive performance, winning the hearts of the audience with his quick whit and charm and blasting his way through ships and fight scenes with the look of an experienced actor. Teaming with Orlando Bloom, they joined in many action sequences as Bloom also put on a performance that was astonishing considering that he’s been doing nothing but shooting arrows for the past few years in the Lord of the Ring trilogy. Geoffrey Rush was a fantastic choice for a villain, I mean just look at him (pictured above)!
Another thing I loved about this movie was the little things. Have you ever been on the actual ride Pirates of the Caribbean? If you have, you might recognize some of the scenes from the ride in the movie! If you want a refresher, click here to view some pictures from the ride. Having included some of the parts of the ride added to the fun factor of Pirates.
But there was something that bothered me. Spoiler follows Barbossa needed the blood of someone specific in the film to lift the curse, but it wasn’t blood like “It’s time to split you open ear to ear” it was more like, “give me your hand, let me poke your finger with a needle and get a dab of blood on the coins to life the curse.” So the million-dollar question is, what’s the big deal with letting the pirates cut your hand to release the curse? They were cursed, they needed a little coin with a little blood on it, and they would be free. So whats the big deal? Yeah, kind of irritating isn’t it? But not enough to ruin the great time I had, just enough to make sure I let a little steam out. End Spoiler
Overall I found Pirates of the Caribbean to be just like Terminator 3 in the sense of what I expected. It was an action packed good time, with some great comic relief and a cast that brought everything together perfectly. I highly recommend checking out one of the best movies of the summer so far, the Pirates of the Caribbean: The Curse of the Black Pearl.