Review: Pirates of the Carribean: On Stranger Tides

Pirates of the Carribean: On Stranger Tides (2011)

Reviewer: Dexter Kong
Rated: 12 (UK)
Release Date: Out Now
Director: Rob Marshall
Cast: Johnny Depp, Ian McShane, Geoffrey Rush, Penelope Cruise

The latest in the Pirates of the Caribbean franchise, On Stranger Tides, sees Jack Sparrow in search of the Fountain of Youth. But it is a race to the finish as the British, Spanish and Black Beard (Ian McShane) are all in search of the same thing. It is directed by Rob Marshall, whose previous directing history mostly includes musicals. So does it translate well?

For me the latest Pirates film is a great success. It is pretty much what the new Indiana Jones film was trying to be. Though it is a different director from the previous films, it still feels like it’s set within the same world and stays consistent. There is a theatrical sense to it afterall, it just never really lead me to question anything and I was fully along for the ride.

You have the Spanish, who are a force to be reckoned with in a somewhat biblical (Spanish Inquisition) one minded route. The bumbling British who always seem to get the short end of the stick & then there is Black Beard (Ian McShane), pretty much the mystical all round bad guy.

Jack Sparrow (Johnny Depp) is just an absolutely great character, full of quirk and just the right side of dumb. I say dumb, but he is rather ingenious when it comes to escaping places or sorting out tricky situations. Pretty much, don’t leave him in a room with any rope or something to hang off. The dialogue between Depp and the other character plays very well and is hilarious.

Ian McShane as Black Beard was an inert character but still there was a menacing air to him, which is apparent when we see him dealing with people stepping out of line.

Penelope Cruise as Angelica provided some great banter between her and Depp, whilst Geoffrey Rush as usual put in a solid performance as Barbossa returning as the darker form of his character as in the first film.

The 3D was shot with two RED cameras so is the real stuff. It works well and is put to good use. There aren’t too many “pointies” (people or things pointing at the camera), but the underwater stuff is used to great effect adding to the frightening effect as you get the sense of depth and danger. There wasn’t a real sense that it was gimmicky, though there are some slightly dodgy points when Depp is clearly against a cg background.

There is plenty of action to be had with lots of varying set pieces; such as a carriage top chase through London and man eating mermaids.

The story had a neat and tidy finish in being self a contained (unlike the 2nd and 3rd film in the series that suffered for it.) and I’d go as far to say it’s the best in the series. For me there is plenty of room left for more Jack Sparrow.

P.S there is a small 3D treat at the end (if you can be bothered to wait for the endless list of special effects credits to end)

Movie Rating: 4/5

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Posted on May 16, 2011, in 3-D, action, adventure, Family, fantasy, film reviews, franchise, MOVIE REVIEWS and tagged , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. Leave a comment.

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