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Overall Rating
3.41

Awesome33.33%
Worth A Look: 18.94%
Average: 16.67%
Pretty Bad: 17.42%
Total Crap: 13.64%

7 reviews, 90 user ratings



Pirates of the Caribbean: At World's End
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by Eugene Novikov

"Ends on a high note but takes forever to get there."
3 stars

In what might have been a dereliction of duty, I chose not to refresh my memory on the plots of the first two films before setting off to see PIRATES OF THE CARIBBEAN: AT WORLD'S END. I thought that if the second sequel had a chance in hell of recapturing the spirit that made THE CURSE OF THE BLACK PEARL such an unexpected joy, it would have to start by ditching the plot -- in particular the obstinately labyrinthine monstrosity unveiled to everyone's chagrin in DEAD MAN'S CHEST -- and returning the focus to the hilariously deranged Johnny Depp as Jack Sparrow, the gee-whiz charm of the Will-Elizabeth romance, the uncanny fleetness that made the inconsequentiality of the action scenes irrelevant. Surely, I thought, Verbinski/Elliot/Rossio would take the hint: sure, DEAD MAN'S CHEST cleaned up at the box office, but did anyone really love it?

I was both right and wrong: right that the filmmakers would have to give the plotting a rest to get the movie off the ground, and wrong in thinking that they would oblige so readily. The first hundred minutes of the nearly three hour film are as tortuous as this franchise has been; "it's all so complicated," I whispered to my companion after yet another speech about Davy Jones' heart, or the council of the Pirate Lords, or one of the countless alliances that are forged and broken as the story slogs on. It's nearly impossible to engage with this stuff, since it's basically arbitrary, and since anyone of any significance who dies is swiftly returned to us by some sorcery or another.

On and on this went, occasionally interrupted with halting bursts of action or a quick and unsatisfying bit of Depp's mincing. Boredom began to simmer into a fury that a franchise that began its life representing the best of what modern blockbusters had to offer had descended into such plodding, bloated wankery. And the 168-minute running time started to loom very, very large.

Fortunately I soon found myself rescued, since Team Pirates evidently had the wisdom to end the trilogy the way it began. Once the creaky plot finally gets the characters where they need to be, the stage is set for the film's splendid last hour, which at last manages to approach Black Pearl's magic. The focus returns -- somewhat improbably, but what the hell -- to Will and Elizabeth, and the movie's eleventh hour rally begins with an endearingly reckless scene in which the two of them wed as two pirate ships battle while swirling in a vicious maelstrom. It's the sort of skillful, funny, caution-and-sense-to-the-wind set piece I spent a movie and a half waiting for, and it seems to restore the film's and the series' mojo in the nick of time.

The transformation is immediate and remarkable. Everything that follows works: Jack Sparrow is back to his old womanizing, basically incoherent self, closing the film on a superb and hilarious high note; the villain is dispatched in a moment of unexpected lyricism and even beauty; the swashbuckling action regains its vigor and the film is able to sell an extended fight scene atop a ship's sail. To the extent that there were elements of the plot left to be resolved, even those manage to tie up satisfactorily -- the central romance and Davy Jones storylines, in particular, come together in a way that's more downbeat and affecting than I expected.

Even with the last-act rebound, it's hard not to leave At World's End with a sour, vaguely violated impression -- the film is angling to be the apex (or nadir) of this summer's thus far unsatisfying obsession with enormous opening weekends and sequel spectacle. Despite having earned his acting stripes in Kingdom of Heaven, Orlando Bloom is kept around solely to attract a certain demographic; Johnny Depp, the last few minutes of the film notwithstanding, seems to be serving out his contract obligations; and though the movie always looks great, no one seems to have cared much about what happens in its first two-thirds. The Curse of the Black Pearl became such a favorite, I think, because it came out of nowhere with a spark and a soul. The third film begins to recapture some of that in its final minutes, but by then the damage is done.

Now I come back to my failure to review the plots of At World's End's predecessors before watching. Might my reaction to the beginning of the film been different had I recalled all the details through which the plot painstakingly rifles? It's conceivable, but I rather doubt it; I think they're boring no matter one's preparation. And I think the movie's last hour implicitly proves me right.

Reprinted from Filmblather.com

link directly to this review at http://www.efilmcritic.com/review.php?movie=15536&reviewer=419
originally posted: 05/29/07 13:47:53
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User Comments

9/17/12 roscoe overlong, no interest, no new elements, stale, hard to watch. 3 stars
3/04/10 dude too long boring confusing and talky 5 stars
6/09/09 freak boring as hell 1 stars
1/21/09 Anonymous. a little messy but sweet and sad ending. 4 stars
12/20/08 Scott kiera knightly is sooo hot in this film 5 stars
12/01/08 Roz Not as good as the 1st. Plot was an absolute mess and hard to follow. 2 stars
11/30/08 noops.... better than the 2 nd one but the first part was too good 4 stars
11/12/08 Michael M Elizabeth was the main character instead of Sparrow, and that's where this movie failed. 2 stars
10/10/08 man hated it 1 stars
9/17/08 Oiman Amazing music, action, and overall story. Callpso scene was unimaginative though. 4 stars
5/14/08 PAUL SHORTT ITS A KNOCKABOUT, SCATTERSHOT AFFAIR 2 stars
5/01/08 Charles Tatum Bloated but fun...like your mom 4 stars
3/10/08 RK notwithstanding the confusing twists and turns, it was fun to watch --- twice in a roll. 4 stars
2/16/08 daveyt confusing twaddle 1 stars
1/26/08 man boring overlong and reeeaaallly confusing 1 stars
1/16/08 Dani I love these movies. Great acting, amazing plot, hilarious dialogue, and hot actors. 5 stars
1/05/08 Pamela White vague plot but cute the movies are getting worse 3 stars
1/05/08 Ellen Tedious and unoriginal, very disappointing. 2 stars
12/30/07 Austin Wertman talky, too long, and confusing 3 stars
12/16/07 Jason Great action movie, cool characters and epic finale. 5 stars
12/08/07 zenny whatta mess 1 stars
11/28/07 Matt About 15 mins of good stuff and a ton of utter rubbish. Enough now-PLEASE! 2 stars
11/27/07 dude not nearly as good as the first two 1 stars
11/14/07 dude bland adn dissapointing 1 stars
10/10/07 Mango Waay too long and absolute waste of time. Hugely disappointed. 1 stars
10/03/07 wall dont bother 1 stars
10/01/07 Andrew Kercher Best SFX of 3, but 1st was the best overall. This one better than Pirates 2. 4 stars
9/14/07 dude waste of time 1 stars
8/31/07 fallon best movie i every seen and its not a waste of time 5 stars
7/27/07 pheonix not as wonderful as the lord of the rings, But , it is the best since then.. great movie! 5 stars
7/20/07 samantha this movie was the best of the three!! it was awesome!!! 5 stars
7/09/07 tom No story, way too convienent saves, more contrived than WWF. Depp's first sell out. 2 stars
7/04/07 kirsti this movie tied w/ pirates 1 as my favorite movie ever!!! lovelovelove this!!! 5 stars
7/04/07 PamE Loved it, though not as much as the 1st and 2nd 4 stars
7/02/07 RazorFang Peter Sobzcynski, you fucking idiot,this is a damn good movie! 5 stars
6/22/07 Dave bad 1 stars
6/19/07 lkeyser was awesome,looking forward to 4th one! 5 stars
6/17/07 Joe Smaltz fell asleep, but the damn cannons kept waking me up! 1 stars
6/17/07 Ron Newbold Excellent effects, Great cast, decent movie - the first is still the best IMO 4 stars
6/15/07 Qume Ah hah ha hah ha ha hahaha ha haha! 1 stars
6/14/07 romeo awsome movie ...people saying it bad hav no rights to watch eng movies.. 5 stars
6/11/07 Emily Brilliant. Sexy. Fantastic and stunning. Constantly keeps you in total AWE and is a blast!! 5 stars
6/11/07 Brian Mckay Stunning visuals, but a bloated incomprehensible mess. Verbinski, learn to fucking EDIT! 2 stars
6/10/07 Alice Beautiful settings but 3 movies is enough 4 stars
6/10/07 Jenna Walker I thought this movie was epic! Amazing! 5 stars
6/06/07 carl blast, xcellent, be rested non stop fun, super acting, lovely everything, wonderful, yeswow 5 stars
6/06/07 cher5253 Great movie can't follow plot try easier movies where everything is predictable 5 stars
6/03/07 COTBP was excellent, DMC was better,AWE tops them both put together Reesefire Black 5 stars
6/03/07 Zaw I didn't care what happens to any of the charaters. Marriage thing during battle was stupid 2 stars
6/03/07 lab chimp good but not great. worth the money for the special effects, acting v good, gusto-less plot 4 stars
6/03/07 Luji funny, emotional, hot hot actors...nice tie up of the multiple plots...loved it! 5 stars
6/03/07 Heidi Hernandez Excellant fantasy action packed adventure love story with just the right amount of humor 5 stars
6/01/07 Ole Man Bourbon Too short. I felt cheated. 3 stars
6/01/07 Katie Amazing movie.....best trilogy i've ever seen!! JOhnny Depp is brilliant as Jack Sparrow!! 5 stars
5/31/07 lauren i LOVED this movie how could u not it was action packed and has 2 of the hottest guys in it 5 stars
5/31/07 damalc not nearly enough sword fighting for a pirate film. better than 2, not as good as 1. 3 stars
5/30/07 Scott Vine Waste of 3 hrs. Big let down. Nothing new 1 stars
5/30/07 DS Better than the second, as good as the first! Please let there be another one! 5 stars
5/30/07 JP Great! Dont bitch about how confusing it was. Annoying children w/ your insignificant minds 5 stars
5/30/07 Dk better than the convuluted 2nd but still can't match number 1's charm 4 stars
5/29/07 Kurt I didn't care what heppened to any of them. what a mess! 1 stars
5/29/07 Jack Sparrow If you love adventure and swashbuckling battles watch this....If you don't, Bugger off 5 stars
5/29/07 ad the sequels made the first movie mortal, What a waste for such great actors! Wait for DVD. 2 stars
5/28/07 Ryan AAAWesome 5 stars
5/28/07 Jim Overlong and noisy, and Calypso isn't a goddess, she's a nymph 2 stars
5/28/07 Chris Thought the movie was the best so far and can't wait for the next one to come out. 5 stars
5/28/07 Pipina Truly great. But you have to love Pirates... 5 stars
5/28/07 Kate Was Will and Elizabeths son the boy from the beginning? 5 stars
5/28/07 Sasa If you love BAD movies you will love this. 1 stars
5/28/07 Dark Enchantress it was good expect it was confusing and had to much of kiera knightly...i hate her 4 stars
5/27/07 MP Bartley Fun, but WAY to much. Did they forget Depp is the star? 3 stars
5/27/07 kathryn was a little confusing and was more of an action packed film with tons of special effects. 5 stars
5/27/07 gr117 A total blast! 5 stars
5/27/07 devil/angel This film rocks i dont get wat u guys are on about this rocks! 5 stars
5/27/07 KingNeutron Best movie of the year so far. KRichards was very natural in the role. 5 stars
5/27/07 Emma Spectacular movie. Absolutely fantastic, loved it... Pure fun. 5 stars
5/26/07 Blondie This should have come with directions to understand it 3 stars
5/26/07 Mike Very confusing but something to do for 3 hours. Spiderman3 is way better tho. 3 stars
5/26/07 Cory The script's a mess in some parts and yet, the film works...much better than Spider-Man 3. 4 stars
5/26/07 Desperado I really am having trouble understanding why people didnt like it, i thought it was awesome 5 stars
5/26/07 PoisonElf No sense, no inspiration (same charaers/story as 2), unreasonably long, boring. 1 stars
5/26/07 Quigley One of the biggest disappointments ever. Great visuals, but the movie makes no sense at all 2 stars
5/25/07 Chris Pirates of the Carribean ROCKS!!!!!!! FOLKS 5 stars
5/25/07 Ara I can't understand how people dont understand this movie. Anyway gr8 movie! 5 stars
5/25/07 Sir spam-a-lot Okay, I shot myself. What now? 3 stars
5/25/07 Burnsy Yarrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrr, me's a pirate. 5 stars
5/25/07 Snail This movie was EPIC. A lot more fun than Spider-Man 3 too. 5 stars
5/25/07 John I had no idea what the hell was going on 3 stars
5/25/07 Blizz Please, these movies are for morons. If you go see this, shoot yourself. 1 stars
5/24/07 Scott haller jack sparrow is hot 5 stars
IF YOU'VE SEEN THIS FILM, RATE IT!
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USA
  24-May-2007 (PG-13)
  DVD: 04-Dec-2007

UK
  N/A

Australia
  24-May-2007




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