Pirates of the Caribbean: At World’s End

pirates-of-the-caribbean.jpgRated: PG-13
Running Time: 168 minutes
Directed by Gore Verbinski
Screenplay by Ted Elliot and Terry Rossio
(Third Installment Based on a Disney Ride)


Many of the major film critics have already weighed in and have pronounced this film to be convoluted and hard to follow.

I didn’t find it particularly hard to follow, but I did find it tedious at times.  The dialogue could have used some editing.  The pacing of this film is slower than the previous two films and there are a lot of scenes that revolve around plots and counterplots.  If you can slug through this, there are some major fight scenes and spectacular CGI effects, but all together, the film does not hold up as well as the first two.


First, let me praise some of the best features of this film:

I loved the surreal sequences with Jack Sparrow (Johnny Depp) going out of his mind while in the Limbo region of Davy Jones’ Locker.  The arguments with his imaginary clones were hysterical.  Fun, surreal, stuff.

The final climax with the Maelstrom and the hand to hand combat between the crew of the Black Pearl and the crew of the Flying Dutchman was tremendous.  Great choreography and special effects.

The ending with Jack Sparrow planning to seek immortality by following Ponce de Leon’s map to the Fountain of Youth promises more to come.  Yo-ho-ho!

However, there were some bad things as well:

As mentioned above, the film was too talky with too much dialogue.

Rumor has it that there was a really important scene cut from the film which explains that if Calypso had remained faithful to Davy Jones that he was only supposed to have served a short stint aboard the Flying Dutchman before being reunited with her and re-joining the mortal world.  This will probably be on the special features when it comes out on DVD.  However, this scene certainly puts a spin on the ending between Will and Elizabeth.  You’ll see when you watch the film.  Without this explanation, the ending seems a bit darker than it would otherwise.

This movie really plays up the notion that there is going to be a huge multi ship battle between the Pirate Armada and the flotilla amassed by the East India Trading Company.  They are poised to fight at one point…but don’t.  We get a great 2-ship battle, but I guess they ran out of money to do the giant battle.  Too bad.

Some of the CGI was a little overdone.  The death of Lord Beckett (Representative of the East India Trading Co.) was a little too grandiose.  Sometimes, just because you can do a cool effect, doesn’t mean you should.

Despite some charming and genuinely funny moments, some of the humor was a bit over the top or forced and took away from action sequences that should have been allowed to play out uninterrupted.  The marriage of Will and Elizabeth during a fight sequence was just goofy.  There are moments that call for humor, but you don’t have to squeeze a joke or a gag in every 5 seconds.


The beginning of the film starts out with a song…a very grim song.  A number of people suspected of aiding and abetting pirates are being led to the gallows without benefit of a trial.  Suddenly, led by a little boy among them, they break into a pirate song which goes out and summons the help of the Pirate Lords.  Too late to help the victims, but enough to rouse the pirates to action against the evil machinations of the East India Trading Company.

Unfortunately, the East India Trading Company has enslaved the Flying Dutchman and their Captain, Davy Jones, whose heart is in the clutches of Lord Beckett.  We don’t get to see it, but Beckett (sometime between Pirates 2 & 3) forced Jones to kill the Kraken.  However, he’s been using the crew of the Flying Dutchman to do his dirtywork.

Our intrepid heroes, Will Turner and Elizabeth Swann join up with their old nemesis, Barbossa, to round up the Nine Pirate Lords of the Brethren Court.  It is hoped they can form an armada to stop the East India Company (Much like Sir. Henry Morgan did when raiding Panama).

However, since Jack Sparrow is one of those pirate lords and he is trapped in the Limbo region of Davy Jones’ Locker, they must first free him.

They follow a secret map held by Barbossa to enter The Locker, but as Barbossa says, “The problem is not getting in…it’s getting out.”  After convincing Sparrow that they are not a figment of his imagination, they manage to solve the mystery of escaping the Locker.

Alas, Elizabeth discovers her father has been murdered, as they make their way back to the domain of the living and are passed by hundreds of solitary souls floating in longboats by ghostly lantern light on their way to the afterlife.

Eventually, our heroes hold a gathering of the Brethren Court.  We find out that Jack’s Father looks suspiciously like Keith Richards!  Interesting…

The East India Company has amassed a much larger flotilla than the pirates can, however, so Barbossa argues for a last resort solution…to free the goddess of the sea, Calypso, so she might wreak vengeance on Lord Beckett and his men.  Problem is, Calypso is grumpy because it was the pirates who imprisoned her in the first place, and there is no guarantee she will help them.

As expected, the pirates start to scheme and plot…betraying one another…each of them trying to achieve their own selfish ends despite the doom that threatens them all.

How does it end?

See the film and find out.