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Director: Gore Verbinski

Producer: Jerry Bruckheimer

Written by: Ted Elliott and Terry Rossio

Cast: Johnny Depp, Keira Knightley, Orlando Bloom, Geoffrey Rush, Chow-Yun Fat, Tom Hollander


Last time on Pirates Of The Caribbean:

Captain Jack Sparrow (Depp) tried to escape the grave debt to Davy Jones. Lord Cutler Beckett (Hollander) turned Will Turner (Bloom) and Elizabeth Swann’s (Knightley) happily ever after into a classic tragedy of doomed lovers. They learn of Davy Jones’ one and only weakness: his heart in a hidden chest. Conflicting interests collide, leading to one betrayal after another. Bloom values his father’s freedom over Jack’s. Norrington seeks the heart to restore his rank in the Queen’s Navy. And in the end, Elizabeth traps Jack Sparrow on the Black Pearl, leaving him to the maws of Davy Jones’ Kraken. Desperate to wrest their beloved Captain from Davy Jones’ locker, the crew of the Pearl vows to bring their hero back to this earth, even if it means partnering up with the villainous Barbossa (Rush).

That should bring you back up to speed. If you’re anything like me, you haven’t seen Dead Man’s Chest in about a year. Also, you saw it at a press screening and wrote a lukewarm review of it that ended as such:

The rest of my judgement will be saved for the last installment in the Pirates “trilogy.” They could make a good third movie and blow me completely away. That would be sweet. After all, I tasted portions of the greatness of the first movie. They could still have that “magic” and bring it all home in the third. This could all be build up to an epic crescendo.

I can safely say that At World’s End falls in the “sweet” category. This final installment serves as the climax of a 5.25-hour story consisting of two movies. Verbinski, Elliot, and Rossio must have read my review of Dead Man’s Chest, because they took the time to put in all the action and comedy that I missed so dearly. For example, imagine an 18th century Mexican standoff that ended in a series of pulled triggers, only to be reminded that wet powder does not burn. Or maybe an epic finale where the Black Pearl and the Flying Dutchman circle a maelstrom, firing and slashing and parrying and stealing and falling and dying.

There were a few things I didn’t like in this movie. Que sera sera. Maybe they could have found a better visual representation of a goddess than a 100-foot woman. Maybe Will Turner and Elizabeth Swann could have found a better time to be married and a better man to marry them. But these are minor problems compared to my gripes about Dead Man’s Chest. Especially because we get to see Keira Knightley engage in deviant piratical femme-dom and Keith Richards as the classical Disney pirate.

Oh, and don’t expect a “happy” ending. The less you think about the bitter side of the sweet, the happier you’ll be.

—Duncan Wright

hybridCinema Ratings Guide:

Take a pal and pay full price for both tickets.

Itís worth a full-price ticket.

Itís worth a matinee ticket.

Wait for video rental.

Check out the video from the library, if you must.

While we would never encourage anyone to destroy a video...

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