Don’t you think I look good in this hat?

Theatrical Release Date: 05/20/2011
Director: Rob Marshall
Cast: Johnny Depp, Penélope Cruz, Geoffrey Rush, Ian McShane, Kevin McNally, Sam Claflin, Astrid Berges-Frisbey, Stephen Graham, Keith Richards, Richard Griffiths, Judi Dench
Rated: PG-13 for intense sequences of action/adventure violence, some frightening images, sensuality and innuendo.
Runtime: 2 hours, 17 minutes


Aghhh! Another Pirates of the Caribbean movie!

Over the past few days, I’ve tried to wrangle my thoughts and criticisms about the fourth entry into the Pirates of the Caribbean franchise, “On Stranger Tides”, into a succinct and cohesive review. Prepare yourself … like the movie, this is bound to be a little all over the place.

Let’s start with the good news! Keith Richards reprises his role as Johnny Depp’s on-screen pirate father and the newcomers are supremely cast, most notably the mermaids and Blackbeard (Ian McShane). The mermaids are a bevy of doe eyed, ferocious beauties. Blackbeard is both dark and foreboding.

The fight scenes are consistently well choreographed, and action packed. The first major fight scene is an amazing display of swordsmanship, heavily reminiscent of the first fight between Orlando Bloom and Depp in “Curse of the Black Pearl”, as well as a wonderful introduction to Angelica (Penélope Cruz). Finally, for all you Disney-philes, there are again multiple nods to the ride that started it all.

Now for the bad news. Blackbeard is given mystical powers which elevate him to an almost demigod-like status and mermaids, while beautiful, are apparently some type of vampiric creatures. Orlando Bloom and Keira Knightley fans will be disappointed to know that neither actor is in this movie. And lastly, the 3D was completely unnecessary. Not only was it rarely used effectively, but any sort of fast motion was nauseating. I am completely baffled by the recent 3D obsession of movie companies; I understand that they can charge more per ticket, but wonder how long it will take for this technique to be used effectively.

While not my personal favorite of the series, I firmly believe that fans of the franchise will thoroughly enjoy this most recent romp through pirate lore, with “On Stranger Tides” earning a 3 out of 5. Also, be sure to stick around for a short, entertaining clip after all the credits.

3 out of 53D No