There has been a lot of bad press about the latest Pirates of the Caribbean movie, the general concensus being that brilliant actors putting in brilliant performances are being let down by a boring story with substantial issues.
All lengthy franchises cop their fair share of abuse (both justified and unjustified) by the time they hit the fourth instalment, but this is Pirates of the Caribbean and any movie that has pirates is almost definitely better than the picture being painted by all those pesky review sites. Pirates inspire great works of creativity, just have a look at the latest from The Lonely Island:
Well the pesky review sites were right, Pirates 4 showcases some of the strongest acting and some of the worst story telling in the franchise to date… in fact I will go as far as to say the story was a steaming pile of shit clearly trying to cash in on an established brand name. It’s a shame because the three previous films all had very tight storylines with all the loose ends wrapped up at the end of the third film. There was nothing that needed explaining, no reason to make a fourth movie, and yet here we are talking about it and with the amount of money being made at the box office I expect that we will be here again soon talking about a fifth movie.
There is absolutely nothing wrong with the actors in this movie, it looked and felt like they were giving 100%. Keira Knightley, Orlando Bloom and Jack Davenport are notable omissions, but they are hardly missed as newcomers Ian McShane and Penelope Cruz step up to the plate and deliver two very polished and likeable characters. Johnny Depp is once again fantastic portraying the iconic stylings of Captain Jack Sparrow and Geoffrey Rush fully embraces the role of Barbossa, looking like he was having a lot of fun. Keith Richards got another cameo with brief but memorable line – “Does this face look like its been to the fountain of youth?”.
The big issue for me was that the story was completely lacking in direction and cohesion, throwing in random subplots that go unresolved for the whole movie and add absolutely nothing to the main storyline. I spent the whole movie asking Nicole why… “Why do you think they did that?” “Why was the Captain Jack impersonator impersonating Captain Jack?” “Why did she grow legs if she couldn’t use them?” “Why is everything so dark and foggy?” “Why did they film this in 3D and have 95% of the movie shown in 2D?” It just seemed like the director was being lazy relying on the name, his actors,and that 3D gold mine to sell tickets rather than solid story writing and creative cinematography.
All in all this movie was a big let down, not the worst movie I have seen this year but pretty close. I went in to the movie expecting to be entertained, and to some degree I was entertained. But I also felt confused, bewildered, and bored, three feelings that I should not feel coming out of a movie. Given the success of this movie I think its safe to assume that a fifth will be made, and given my attachment to the franchise it is safe to say I will watch it. But I have been stung now, and if the fifth movie is anything less than brilliant I will not be seeing another.