Pirates of the Caribbean: Curse of the Black Pearl

Starring: Johnny Depp, Geoffrey Rush, Orlando Bloom, Keira Knightly and Jack Davenport.
Directed by: Gore Vebinski
Rated: PG-13



Bluntly speaking? POTC: Curse of the Black Pearl is an immediate Disney™ Classic! It's a frolicking ten ton treasure chest of swashbuckling summer fun! The story is engaging, the cast precise, the action is spectacular and the animation dolloped throughout is raising the bar in the craft as I type.

The film is based upon the ride "Pirates of the Caribbean" in Disneyland Park, and one may therefore get a bit nervous when entering the theater, checking for the illumination of the Exit signs for a quick getaway if a failure it be. But Disney hired Shrek scriptwriters (Ted Elliot & Terry Rossio) to add to, and accent, the script they bought from Stuart Beattie. The result is a genuinely funny take on pirates and their cursed treasure with, naturally, a delicate underlying love story in a caldron of family fun.

Story goes…. Elizabeth Swann (Keira Knightley) has long been smitten with the young man she and her father, Governor Weatherby Swann (Jonathan Pryce) found adrift at sea years before. She knew nothing of the lad but did steal - err - borrow indefinitely his gold doubloon necklace that was stamped with a jolly roger. The sign of a pirate!

The lad, Will Turner (Orlando Bloom), has blossomed into one helluva blacksmith's apprentice and is also deeply smitten with Elizabeth.

Meanwhile the sleepy Caribbean port they call home, Port Royal is about to change. A scallywag of a scurvy dog named Capt. Jack Sparrow (Johnny Depp) has drifted into port. His mission is simple, steal a ship and be back upon the seas by dusk to catch the crusty rat bastard, one Capt. Barbossa (Geoffrey Rush), who mutinied and stole his ship, 'The Black Pearl.'

However before he can maneuver his away upon a vessel he's discovered as the rogue pirate he is and sent to the gallows for a quick morning hanging.

That evening however, while the town sleeps, the infamous 'Black Pearl' herself descends upon the port and wakes its townsfolk with cannons and pillaging. The motley crew have come for the governor's daughter Elizabeth…seems she has something they be needing. Argh!

With nowhere else to turn handsome Will must join forces with the odious Capt. Jack. And before Will can recite a bar of 'Yo-Ho-Ho and a Bottle of…' he and Jack have stolen the H.M.S. Interceptor. But Elizabeth's upper crusty high-tea style fiancé and el captain of the purloined ship, Capt. Commodore Norrington (played by upper crusty high-tea style talent Jack Davenport) will have none of it and he sets sail to save his gal and now too, his ship…

Meanwhile, while manly mayhem departs Port Royal,
across the Caribbean channel deep in the catacombs of a barren isle…

Capt. Barbossa has ominous plans for Elizabeth. Seems he and his band of lecherous hooligans stole some gold that came with a devilish curse. Argh! The lot be cursed till all the gold be returned to its chest, and only Elizabeth can save them from eternal damnation - pirate style. Argh! Can her men save her from Davey Jones' locker and certain death? Hmm...

From the very first frame in which we glimpse Johnny Depp the comical tone of the film is set. Depp creates yet another of his indelible characters in Capt. Jack Sparrow. Johnny's Capt. Jack is a delightful blend between the ever swaying super cool Keith Richards and the obliviously happy Pepe LePew! It's brilliance personified.

Kiera Knightly is beautiful as the not-so-meek gal pal of Will betrothed to Comdr. Norrington.

Orlando Bloom carves out a spot for himself on the list of rocketing young stars! There's no elve ears to be seen and yum-o-rama with a sprinkle of purr is this guy scrumptious!

Notoriously talented Geoffrey Rush plays Capt. Barbossa with a wicked sense of humor and mesmerizing layers of evil and humility. This aint no run-of-the-gin-mill comic book pirate kiddies.

Dare I say it? I may have found my new favorite film de Jour. POTC: Curse of the Black Pearl has it all. Ye best be getting' yer whole motley crew together and be headin' down the theater plank way to net yourself a blazin' good time with the kind folks that strung together this film. Argh. This be a treasure worthy of Cortez.

Snack Recommendation: Turkey drumstick and roasted seagull, with a frosty pint of Scurvy Ale - Light

Here be some blunt nuggets of yum for ye!



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