PIRATES OF THE CARIBBEAN: We’re watching it right now on DVD; my wife wanted to see it. It’s innocuous enough, and Johnny Depp’s performance as
Keith Richards the lead pirate is certainly a riot. David Frum pointed out the Karen Allen-like performance of the heroine, as part of the usual revisionist elements that Hollywood insists on inserting into its films, but it’s got enough Earl Flynn and Douglas Fairbanks atmosphere to overcome them. And every establishing shot at the start of a new scene seems to be from the Disneyland ride. There’s even a potshot at the French midway through the film. There are also some great Dolby EX rear speaker effects periodically throughout the film, if you’ve got the proper decoding rig and rear speaker(s).
I’m kind of sorry I didn’t see it in the theaters–it’s perfect Saturday matinee fair.
UPDATE: Spoiler alert: highlight the text below with your mouse if you’ve already seen the film (or just don’t care about the ending).
The ending was terrible: a British Navy captain willingly letting a pirate go? And a governor letting his daughter marry a professed pirate? C’mon. I could see Depp, his sidekick and the girl escaping, as Depp is rescued from the hangman’s noose. But that was a dreadful ending the filmmakers chose for an otherwise enjoyable amusement park ride (so to speak) of a film.