Review of 'Pirates of the Caribbean: At World's End'

3rd film in the 'Pirates of the Caribbean' series

at_worlds_end.jpg Picking up where Dead Man's Chest left off, Captain Hector Barbossa (Geoffrey Rush), Will Turner (Orlando Bloom) and Elizabeth Swan (Keira Knightley) travel to Singapore to visit with Captain Sao Feng (Yun-Fat Chow) who has map that shows the way to Davy John's Locker where they hope to find Captain Jack Sparrow (Johnny Depp). Jack is even more unhinged than normal, taking to talking to himself while experiencing severe weirdness in the locker. Barbossa, Will and Elizabeth eventually arrive, returning with Jack to the real world only to find themselves once again pursued by Davy Johns (Bill Nighy) who is now controlled by Cutler Beckett (Tom Hollander) of the East India Company. Teamed up with the eight other pirate lords (each holding one of “nine” (?) pieces of “eight”) Davy Johns and the East India Company itself is in for a bit of a fight…

At World's End manages to top the special effects of Dead Man's Chest with some absolutely incredible set pieces to the point that it is next to impossible to follow the action (the scene with the whirlpool is particularly incredible). Despite this there is still time for the filmmakers to indulge in some imaginative “Jack moments” (his scenes in Davy John's Locker are quite incredible), however, it is Jack that really seems to be their primary focus with other characters left to hit their marks but little else (to be fair, there is a bit of character development in the relationship between Will and Elizabeth). So, if you are getting a bit bored of Jack, you might not be too pleased here. There is a nice cameo by Keith Richards as Captain Teague, Pirate King, who clearly demonstrates the influence he had on Depp's Jack Sparrow.

The plot is, as you might expect, fairly complex and confusing but to be honest you are not watching this film for the story, you are watching it for the action, special effects and humour. The film has a lot of loose ends to resolve from the previous two movies which it does quite reasonably well with, to my mind, quite a surprising ending. At almost three hours in length there is a lot that is thrown on the screen and trying to make sense of it tends to occupy much of this time. Despite this marathon the film is surprisingly fun and entertaining though some may tire of the amount of special effects wizardry that is continually thrown at the viewer.

A film that is all about special effects and trying to pull together the numerous strands of the (confusing) series to a not-entirely satisfactory conclusion at the expense of some of the calm, quirky charm of the first, and, perhaps, second film. I guess here they believed “more is better” but it does not quite work. Still, a good bit of fun.

Rating: “Really good but I have some issues”

Review Date: 2020-04-17

Directed by: Gore Verbinski

Studio: Walt Disney Pictures

Year: 2007

Length: 169 minutes

Genre: Action/Adventure

Other reviewed films in the 'Pirates of the Caribbean' series:

Other reviewed films by Gore Verbinski: