Thursday, May 19, 2011
Pirates vs Pirates vs Pirates
4 Pirates 4 Caribbean (Or is it Caribbean?) is set to open this weekend. It has been plagued by directorial problems, studio conflicts, actors not returning, and Johnny Depp just being mad. So sadly, it probably won't turn out as good as the old trilogy. However, those are some big pirate boots to fill, as the first three are all amazing movies. Pitting them against each other is a much tougher task than some series as they all have great strong points. So after thinking about it for a couple long minutes, I've decided to go with: 3 > 2 > 1.
PotC 3 At World's End would be my hands down top pick. The entire final battle is epic in every way imaginable. The first fight is very well done too, and I lol hard every time that midget fires the gun even though I know it is so stupid. Also we got a full movie of both Geoffrey Rush and Bill Nighy, with even a little Chow Yun-Fat (if very little). And without a doubt, it has the best post-credits scene ever. No amount of Samuel L. Jackson talking loud could capture the emotion in those few seconds at the end. I can't believe how many people walked out before then, despite both previous PotC movies having post-credit scenes.
Even though PotC 3 has the best scenes of the trilogy, it also has some of the worse. Every scene involving multiple Johnny Depps was completely worthless and they were shoehorned in just to please the little girls. There are some annoying plot-holes, namely why Depp wasn't still inside a giant octopus. And can someone please tell me why that Voodoo girl grew really big and turned into a bunch of crabs? What did that accomplish?
PotC 2 comes next, and I have to say Keira Knightley carries this one better than any of the other actors. The strongest parts of this film were when she was dressing up as a guy and sneaking around with the other pirates. But Davy Jones and the Kraken really help move this one too. Mr Jones has such a cool, unique, and insanely detailed ship and crew, leading to some of the best ever usage of CGI. Graphic artist people really need to take note of his boat. And the Kraken gave us possibly the best sea monsters scenes ever in film (why aren't there more sea monsters in film?) Also, when that Kraken was released, it didn't come with a unfunny and forced meme.
PotC 1 is the weakest in the action and special effects categories, but that's only because the filmmakers were expecting such a huge hit. It does make up for this with some great character relations all throughout. The opening scene with young Will and Elizabeth is about as perfect of a prologue as you will ever see. And the scene when you first meet Captain Jack Sparrow -- camera zooms in on him on the mast with the sunset in the background as the music picks up, then the camera zooms out to show a sinking dingy -- will go down as of the the all time greatest. Remember in my Leon review I stressed how important character introductions are, and PotC has no shortage of great ones. Sadly, the last act kinda drags, putting the first as the worst, but that is still a very strong bronze medal.
PotC 4 looks a bit better with every preview, and I am feeling pretty optimistic. Some people are upset with the lost of Keira and Orlando Bloom. I am impressed they are sticking to their guns. I mean MAJOR POTC3 SPOILERS he is dead and she has a kid now. Granted, Johnny Depp died twice during the series but whatever END SPOILERS.
However, there's one thing that has me worried, and that so many people overlooked. The main characters of PotC 1-3 are William Turner and Elizabeth Swann. Everything that happened in the series somehow revolved around them. Jack Sparrow was just along for the ride. He was almost even the comic relief character. All three are great actors, and there is still plenty of story left with Jack and Barbossa, but I just hope it doesn't take a turn for the worse with Jack solely in the spotlight.
Rotten Tomatoes has PotC 4 currently at 36%. That may sound bad, but it isn't much lower than the last two (54% and 45% for 2 and 4). Besides, Bridemaids is still at 89%. RT is never the go to site.
So have fun at the Midnight premiers and this weekend. Tell me how it is, but don't spoil it. It may be a bit before I can get to the theater myself.