Thursday, June 9, 2011

Review of Pirates of the Caribbean 4

I’m happy to say this movie lived up to my expectations. Of course, my expectations weren’t very great. I was going for some amusing Captain Jack Sparrow-ness, a few sword fights, and oh hey, they have Blackbeard, that should be fun.

Johnny Depp was his usual irreverent self (especially to the prince, of all people), and had several amusing tricks as well. After several strange things at the beginning, including a Python-style court scene, an impostor, a magical disappearing Keith Richards, Captain Jack finds himself gang-pressed into service on the Queen Anne’s Revenge. He finds out his old flame just might be Blackbeard’s daughter, and also Blackbeard has a remote control sword for the ship. Somehow he also is magical, though he doesn’t disappear. This is never explained, though one assumes he’s been doing Sith occult rituals since his beard was on fire. (This is never explained either).

By this time we find out there are several people looking for the Fountain of Youth. You have the Spanish, who sail along at a calm but quick pace; Barbossa, working as a privateer for the crown, with Gibbs, and still unable to shake the piratey mannerisms; and of course Blackbeard, who has heard a prophecy that a one-legged man will kill him in so many weeks.

Oh, lookey there. Barbossa lost his leg in a fight against…Queen…Anne’s…Revenge. Good job, Blackbeard, you caused your own problem!

Oh, and there’s a stipulation for the Fountain: it essentially involves taking one’s life force for your own. So, in other words, it’s a Sith evil fountain. Jack’s old girlfriend (whose name honestly escapes me; she was there to act sexy and complain about people being mean to dear old Daddy) wants to save Daddy Blackbeard; Jack obviously wants immortality; Blackbeard wants to not die; and everyone else is just along for the ride, including the totally random missionary who was tied to a mast for…well, I think it had something to do with protection from storms, but as that makes no sense one assumes Blackbeard was on some manner of drugs when he came up with that.

So, they sail away, Blackbeard does some evil stuff, they need a mermaid’s tear so they try to catch mermaids (which are more like traditional mermaid-sirens…ON SPEED), and the only reason one gets caught is because she saves the missionary and sings to him. She is apparently not as ax-crazy as the others. So everyone flounders around Florida, missionary and mermaid fall in love (quick question: why complain about lifting the lid of the glass mermaid holder box? I mean you want a live mermaid, right? Blackbeard, lay off the drugs, it’s affecting your mind), Blackbeard proves he’s not really concerned about daughter-dearest but she’s too dumb to see, because she has Daddy Issues (see: Cleolinda parody of Phantom of the Opera), and Barbossa keeps alcohol in his fake leg. Yes.

I’m going to get spoilerific here, because there are amusing comments I want to make. (highlight text to see) After they get all the MacGuffins required for the Sith ritual, they make it a magic cave, in which they open up an interdimensional portal or some such thing, and they find the Fountain. So while two factions fight and argue over who gets the Fountain and whatnot, and Barbossa manages to stabbity Blackbeard, suddenly the Spanish appear! They have guns, they’ll take the Fount—

Wait, are they destroying it?

Yes, ladies and gentlemen, the Spanish destroy the “pagan waters”. I’m fairly certain they cut out the line where the Spanish admiral says “YOU ARE NOT READY FOR IMMORTALITY” in cryptic tones. Luckily there’s a bit still pouring out (so where’s the Fountain’s source? Who knows?) so Jack grabs up the magic goblets taken from poor dead Ponce de Leon, prepares the goblets, and…Blackbeard wants his lovely dearest daughter to save him oh pretty please? Because fathers always ask their daughters to sacrifice their lives for them. What a Greek drama we’ve got going on.

Luckily Jack switches the cups, Blackbeard dies in a singularly horrific fashion, and his daughter…complains about Jack being mean to Daddy Dearest. *cue exaggerated sighing*

So, it ends mostly well. Barbossa has the Queen Anne’s Revenge, complete with remote control sword, Gibbs and Jack have taken the whole fleet of shrunken, bottled ships from the Revenge, including the Black Pearl, and What’s-Her-Face is stuck on a desert island, because she just won’t stop it with her Daddy Issues.

Unfortunately the voodoo doll of Jack washes ashore. Whoops.

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