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Old June 16th, 2006, 08:09 PM
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AICN's Moriarty Visits The Editing Room Of PIRATES OF THE CARIBBEAN 2 And Meets Jerry Bruckheimer.

***HE had seen 45 minutes of the film.

and,

HE LIKED IT.

Quote:
Hi, everyone. "Moriarty" here with some Rumblings From The Lab...
As long as I’ve been in LA, Jerry Bruckheimer has been one of the biggest names in film production. The second day I lived in town, I went to the Chinese theater to see the opening day of DAYS OF THUNDER, the first film to play there in DTS digital sound. It wasn’t a great film, but it was a heck of an introduction to a theater I’d been reading about since I was a kid, and it felt appropriate to see a “movie movie” there. More than anything, that’s what Bruckheimer does. He makes “movie movies.” His films don’t take place in any sort of real world, and that’s what makes them work. When they work. I’ll confess, I’ve got a love/hate relationship with his movies. If I were to divvy them up, I’d put BEVERLY HILLS COP, THIEF, AMERICAN GIGOLO, MARCH OR DIE, THE REF, CRIMSON TIDE, BLACK HAWK DOWN, BAD BOYS II, NATIONAL TREASURE, and even GLORY ROAD in the category of films of his that I enjoyed. The film I think I was least expecting to like that I was most persuasively won over by was PIRATES OF THE CARIBBEAN: THE CURSE OF THE BLACK PEARL. When it was first announced, I thought it sounded as wrong-headed as possible. Basing a film on a theme park ride seemed like the crassest, most blatant form of corporate synergy possible.
And, yet, somehow... it worked. Even during production, there were stories floating around town about executives panicking the first time they saw dailies of Johnny Depp’s performance, and there were questions about the untested star power of Orlando Bloom and Kiera Knightley. Even so, all of that disappeared as soon as the film was released. Audiences fell in love with Captain Jack Sparrow something fierce, and the film became a sensation that summer. Now, only a few years later, we’re looking at another part two-part three double-header, one this summer and one in 2007, and the real question is “Can they do it again?” If the odds were stacked against them the first time, I’d say they’re doubled at this point. Sequels are, by definition, lesser than the original. Time and time again, they end up being pale shadows of whatever worked the first time out, and they burn down audience affection fairly quickly.

...

This is as smart and as solid a sequel as I can imagine Hollywood making at this point. It looks like they listened to the audience of the original, and they really thought about what worked. This thing wasn’t rushed, and you can tell. Every frame of what I saw had been lavished with attention and was packed with layer upon layer of things to look at and to rewatch. This looks to be one of those rare sequels that actually makes the first film richer if everything pays off as well as what I saw. Although I wasn't exactly dying to see a sequel to PIRATES when it was first announced, this has won me over, little by little. That last trailer was a pretty much flawless blockbuster trailer, and that’s when I really started to suspect that this one might be something special. Seeing this footage and spending the time listening to Bruckheimer talking about what they’ve done convinced me completely.

Continue reading ...
There are some MAJOR spoilers so I had to cut.
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Old June 16th, 2006, 09:15 PM
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Thanks, Amby! 20 days left!
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Old June 18th, 2006, 05:47 PM
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Thanks Amby- very interesting reading and good to know he thought it a solid sequel.
I prebooked my tickets today WHEE!!!
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Old June 20th, 2006, 05:52 PM
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thanks for the info, everybody
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Old June 22nd, 2006, 10:35 PM
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I wasn't quite sure where to post this...

Hollywood Elsewhere

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"I'm beginning to wonder if Pirates is not only going to blow everything out of the water this year, but if it's going to take the three-day record from Spiderman. I didn't go to the screening last night, but I sent my girlfriend and she reported that it's not only incredible, but that it had the junket audience applauding as well. If Jerry Bruckheimer, Gore Verbinksi and Johnny Depp can do that to the hard-core critics and cynics, think what it's going to do for the civilians." -- Journalist colleague.
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Old June 22nd, 2006, 11:00 PM
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Oh, wow! Reading that makes me even MORE excited for this movie! I didn't think it was possible! Thanks, Interconnector!
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Old June 23rd, 2006, 01:53 AM
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Thanks Interconnector, that is AWESOME!

Is it July yet?
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Old June 23rd, 2006, 03:34 AM
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Thanks Amby and Interconnector. I'm so happy to read that it was received well!

Does anyone else find it hilarious this the guy from AICN name is Moriarty?
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Old June 23rd, 2006, 12:29 PM
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Another little tidbit to hold us until proper reviews start showing up.

From a poster at the Box Office Mojo forum

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Pirates started screening for critics last night. I hear very good things.
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Old June 25th, 2006, 01:04 PM
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First real review is up at AICN and it's very positive.

**SPOILERS**

Quote:
Hi, everyone. "Moriarty" here with some Rumblings From The Lab...
A few weeks ago, I had a chance to visit the editing room and take a look at about forty-five minutes worth of footage from one of this summer’s most anticipated films, PIRATES OF THE CARIBBEAN 2: DEAD MAN’S CHEST. I wrote about that experience here, and at the time, I was very optimistic about the film.
That’s a little dangerous, though. I’ve been fooled before. Remember my visit to the editing room for TOMB RAIDER? I sure do. And I also remember my reaction to the finished film. See a bit of a disparity there? It’s possible to take 20 or 30 minutes of a film out of context and show them to someone, and you might be able to make that film look like the greatest movie ever. But then when you see things in context, suddenly you get a better picture of what you’re seeing, and suddenly, that 20 or 30 minutes doesn’t look so good. It’s embarrassing, and it’s one of the trickiest parts of agreeing to take an early peek at a part of a film. You can find yourself hung out to dry easily.
Thankfully, that’s not the case here. PIRATES 2 is one of the best summer entertainments I’ve seen in a while, and it manages to improve on the first film in every way. It’s smart, it’s funny, it plays out on an epic scale while still putting character first, and it builds to a conclusion that will have audiences twisting in agony as they have to wait for PIRATES OF THE CARIBBEAN 3: AT WORLD’S END next summer. Basically, it’s everything fans of the first film hope it will be, but it’s also good enough to win over people who were unconvinced by that first movie.
I’m going to try to tread lightly about spoilers for this one, because I would have hated to have had some of the film’s surprises ruined for me.
Basically, this follows a bit of the EMPIRE STRIKES BACK formula, where our main characters are all sent in different directions to do different things that eventually bring them all back together, along with a hearty dose of illicit romance, backstabbing, and supernatural tomfoolery. If you’re using the EMPIRE model, then I guess Orlando Bloom is the closest thing to Luke Skywalker. He’s got the slightest of the roles this time, but he makes the most of the screen time he does have. Thanks to the dark magic of Davy Jones, Will Turner is reunited with his father, Bootstrap Bill Turner, who was only referred to in dialogue in the first film.
Stellan Skarsgaard plays Boostrap Bill with a sort of grim resignation, a man cursed who doesn’t want his son to make his same mistakes. Bootstrap was thrown overboard to drown by his crewmates, but he was suffering from the same curse as them, so he couldn’t die. He was bound, held in place, alive but alone at the bottom of the sea. And he couldn’t take it. He begged Davy Jones to take him, to make him part of the crew of the Flying Dutchman, and that’s exactly what happened.
That’s what happened to everyone aboard the Dutchman, and they’re all kept alive by the mercy of Davy Jones. The longer they live as part of his crew, the more they become one with the sea, so everyone of Davy’s crew is crazy and mutated and unique. One of the unsung heroes of this film appears to be Crash McCreery, a designer and production artist whose work has always blown me away. He’s got a wicked imagination, and if you keep your eyes open and look at all the pirates in all the Davy Jones scenes, you’re going to see some crazy stuff. Even if you hate the rest of the movie (and I can’t imagine you would), the Davy Jones sequences are masterfully staged sequences of imagination, great horror movie mood pieces. There’s a wager that takes place between Will, Davy Jones, and Bootstrap Bill that is all about character, and in that moment, I really wasn’t thinking about “Wow, that’s really great ILM special effects make-up work, with remarkable texture mapping and a pretty ballsy lighting set-up, and I’m impressed by the way the performance capture paid off, particularly in the way his eyes and his mouth work.” All of that is true, but what I was thinking was about the characters... about the stakes for Will... the chance for Bootstrap to do something good. It’s involving, and it transcends just being good special effects.
Bill Nighy plays Davy Jones, and as soon as you see the first sequence in which he appears, you’ll see how fully-realized and iconic a movie monster he is. I think he’ll terrify kids, but in the way they like to be terrified. They’ll scream at points, and they’ll want more of it. Nighy seems to have embraced the potential of performance capture fully, and he’s really helped create a showcase for what’s possible if an actor is in the hands of the right artists. It’s a perfect marriage of performance and effects, and it’s impossible to say where one ends and the other begins. It doesn’t matter if he’s in a violent rainstorm or harsh daylight... Davy Jones looks real to me. Absolutely real, and Nighy hits every note right in the same way that Depp does.
I’m not a big Kiera Knightley fan, but she’s got a good role here. Elizabeth, after all, was the first character we saw in the first film, and in many ways, she’s the lead of the entire trilogy. She was infatuated with pirates, with the romantic notion of them. In her heart, she sort of wanted to be a pirate. Her realization in the first film that real pirates are scary and dishonorable and to be feared was sort of the point of the film. In this movie, Elizabeth has to confront something ugly about herself, the realization that she might be a pirate at heart... that she might not be a good person when all is said and done. Ironic, since she spends most of the movie trying to convince Jack Sparrow that he is more than just a pirate... that he is, in fact, a good man underneath.
Oh, excuse me. That’s Captain Jack Sparrow. Let’s answer the big question: is Johnny Depp as much fun this time as he was in the original? Is it still fresh? The answer is an unreserved yes. Again, the EMPIRE model applies. Remember how cool Han Solo was in STAR WARS the first time you saw it? And then remember how much cooler he seemed when EMPIRE came out? This is that big a jump, and you can tell right away when they manage to come up with an introduction that is just as fun as the way Captain Jack was introduced in the first film. Depp’s marked in this film, cursed and on the run, doing anything he can to save his own skin. It’s a great dilemma to give him, and Depp really rises to the occasion.
I’d run, too, if someone was using The Kraken to track me. Davy Jones can command the beast using a summoning device onboard the Dutchman, and he does so on three separate and spectacular occasions. Again, though... as great as these sea monster attacks are, they each do something very different for the story and to the characters. That last Kraken attack ends up being the most emotion sequence in either this film or the first one. Everyone finally shows their hand, and for a moment, everyone gets a look at everyone else’s true face. It’s pretty great, and it changes the rules for part three next summer.
You’ve got to give it up for the supporting cast. Jack Davenport tears it up as former Commodore James Norrington, the guy who was destroyed emotionally when Elizabeth chose Will Turner over him, and when he was sent after Captain Jack Sparrow and failed to find him, his career was destroyed as well. He’s a wreck when he shows up in this film, and then he goes all Lando on everyone. It’s a nice role, and he makes the most of it. Lee Arenberg and MacKenzie Crook make a nice comedy team through most of this, the sort of R2D2/C3PO combo. Kevin McNally is Chewbacca to Captain Jack’s Han Solo, a big bear of a guy who always has his back and who helps keep the ship on the water. Jonathan Pryce is good, but barely in the film. Tom Hollander makes for a slimy villain as Lord Cutler Beckett, playing it just right, never overselling it. Naomie Harris is pretty great and strange as Tia Dalma, the fortune-teller who they go to visit early on. Everyone plays it just right, and the script gives them something to do, a rarity in blockbusters of this size.
I just plain like Gore Verbinski as a filmmaker, and I think every time out, he seems to be getting more confident, more daring. This reminds me of the crazy pre-PG-13 days of the MPAA, when stuff like POLTERGEIST or RAIDERS was getting a PG. He maintains a pretty rough and tumble dark adventure tone for the entire film, from the opening scenes at a nightmarish prison for pirates all the way to the final scene in the home of Tia Dalma (Naomie Harris). He’s managed to work in some more of the imagery from the classic “Pirates” ride in a few clever nods, and he keeps the film rolling forward in a way that feels a little like a Disney ride felt when you were a kid and you went on them. There’s definitely an episodic nature to much of this script, and in a few places, transitions are played down to the point of haiku. Still not quite sure how Johnny Depp ends up with the natives and how he knows their language, but that’s fine. The entire sequence works so well and is so funny and thrilling that you won’t care about one or two little gloss-overs. The second half of the film works better than the first half, and it feels like the difference is as simple as set-up and pay-off. PIRATES 2 expends a fair bit of shoe leather getting where it’s going, but once it gets up a head of steam, there’s no stopping it.
The film ends with two pretty big shocks to the system, and you should avoid reading anything about them or how they play out. Suffice it to say, it’s all about how well those two events pay off in next summer’s final chapter of the trilogy. The gauntlet’s been thrown down now, and it’s a pretty big cliffhanger on a couple of fronts. I loved the ending, and if you’ll stay all the way through the credits, you’ll get a surprise just like you did in the first film. It’s a great one, too.
Hans Zimmer’s score is pretty damn rousing, and Dariusz Wolski’s cinematography is candy in all the right ways. In many ways, this feels to me like a sort of summation of everything that Terry Rossio and Ted Elliott have written so far. As writers on ALADDIN, SMALL SOLDIERS, both of the ZORRO films, TREASURE PLANET, and THE ROAD TO EL DORADO, they’ve had plenty of experience warming up for these films. The first PIRATES was co-written with Stuart Beattie and Jay Wolpert, both writers who worked on the movie before Ted and Terry came aboard. This time, they were the only writers on the film, and the same thing’s true of the final one next year. This movie really does do everything they’ve done before, but with a grace that only comes from experience. They’ve given Verbinksi a hell of a blueprint, and he seems to have responded to what they wrote, almost like he’s answering a dare.
So, yeah... I think I sort of loved this movie. And considering how I was of mixed opinion on the first one, that’s a pretty nice feeling. I’m ready for next year already, and I’m willing to be you will be, too, as soon as you get a look on July 7th.
Right now, I’m off to work on this week’s DVD column, some more DVD reviews, and my reaction to a little indie movie I saw called SUPERMAN RETURNS. Until then...
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Old June 25th, 2006, 01:34 PM
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awwww!!!!!!!!!!!! I'm so looking forward this!!!! Can't wait....one more month...oh god....
thanks for the einfo
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Old June 25th, 2006, 02:27 PM
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What a great review ! Are we excited yet ?

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Orlando Bloom is the closest thing to Luke Skywalker
I can't wait....I can't wait....I CAN'T WAIT !!!

Thanks, Interconnector !
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Old June 25th, 2006, 02:43 PM
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How cool is it that they used The Empire Strikes Back to explain the plot and characterizations in this film. Star Wars relates to EVERYTHING.

Thanks for the review Interconnector.
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Old June 25th, 2006, 03:40 PM
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Originally Posted by ms_erupt
How cool is it that they used The Empire Strikes Back to explain the plot and characterizations in this film. Star Wars relates to EVERYTHING.


The Empire Strikes Back is by faaaar the best SW movie.So am glad that's the one they used.
Would be terrible if it was Attack of the Clones.
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Old June 25th, 2006, 03:58 PM
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Originally Posted by Malene


The Empire Strikes Back is by faaaar the best SW movie.So am glad that's the one they used.
Would be terrible if it was Attack of the Clones.
Agreed and agreed. If it was Attack of the Clones I would have no choice but to cry into my keyboard.
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Old June 25th, 2006, 07:15 PM
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Originally Posted by ms_erupt
Agreed and agreed. If it was Attack of the Clones I would have no choice but to cry into my keyboard.
Me too.
Not so happy to see that Will has the slightest role.. But if Orlando makes as much out of his screen time as he did with Legolas in The Two Towers...
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Old June 25th, 2006, 09:36 PM
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Orlando had the slightest role? I wonder if that means least amount of screen time, or just least amount of significance.
I'm glad Moriarty loved it though. He's the AICN reviewer I have the most faith in. I can't wait! Less than two weeks now!
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Old June 26th, 2006, 05:15 AM
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Originally Posted by Malene
Not so happy to see that Will has the slightest role.. But if Orlando makes as much out of his screen time as he did with Legolas in The Two Towers...
I was going to say the same thing. I'm sure that while he has little screen time, it's all very significant.
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Old June 26th, 2006, 05:21 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Pumpkin Spice
Orlando had the slightest role? I wonder if that means least amount of screen time, or just least amount of significance.
I'm glad Moriarty loved it though. He's the AICN reviewer I have the most faith in. I can't wait! Less than two weeks now!
Well... According to WEBSTER.
1 a : having a slim or delicate build : not stout or massive in body b : lacking in strength or substance : FLIMSY, FRAIL c : deficient in weight, solidity, or importance : TRIVIAL
2 : small of its kind or in amount : SCANTY, MEAGER

I'm okay with number 1. Will Turner's the straight character, and you can see that Elizabeth Swann's getting darker (with a possible pairing with Jack Sparrow...) So... I think it is more of number 1. Because it looks to me he had a lot of screen time. He is a part of the biggest action sequences in the movie.
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Old June 26th, 2006, 05:38 AM
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Going by the movie novelisation he has the most screen time out of all the characters except for Jack Sparrow and maybe Elizabeth (although they seem to be pretty even)

His character isn't really involved
Spoiler
so i could see why they would see him as having the "slightest" arc.

I actually enjoyed what happens to his character in this one though i may be a bit bias

Another glowing review from David Poland

**SLIGHT SPOILERS**

Quote:
Like Superman Returns, Pirates 2 is too long by about 30 minutes. And the script tends to bog down every time the story gets a bit complex for its own good.

Oh yes… And Pirates of the Caribbean: Dead Man's Chest is easily the best studio confection of the year ... kicking ***, taking names, and reminding us all of the joy that going to a big summer movie is supposed to inspire in us.

The sweet gruel is thick here, so I am a little at a loss at where to begin with non-spoiler details. (There are some spoilers out there - not like the Superman Returns spoilers that are pretty obvious from the word "go," so be careful as you read about the film... including perusing IMDb) I guess the place to start is by saying that I was surprised that this is, essentially, a Middle Movie. There were indications of this as the film went along, but I wasn't sure whether it would be a standalone story until pretty close to the end.

(You will also want to stay in your seat until after the credits. Hans Zimmer makes it easier than it often is by keeping the music rousing through pretty much all the credits, much to my amazement. It still isn't as great as Michael Giacchino's The Incredibles credit music, but pretty great.)

Still, Ted Elliott and Terry Rossio do a nice job of making this movie stand on its own, reflecting the original and whetting the appetite for the third of the series with a cliffhanger that has none of the suspense of The Empire Strikes Back, but all of the fun that sends you out of the theater smiling, laughing, and applauding.

And if you think POTC: Episode 3 is going to be the end, you would be mistaken. It might be a decade between films, but after these two films - which are quite expensive… almost as expensive as The MEFE - generate more than $1.5 billion worldwide between them, it will be too much for anyone to resist. The original was Jerry Bruckheimer's biggest hit by literally hundreds of millions of dollars. And, unlike Lucas and Spielberg, Jerry has a producer's soul and will not get distracted by alternate aesthetic interests. Depp and Verbinski will surely need a few years distance to re-up after spending the last two years plus on this two-shot-together project. But wait… it will come. (And Disney will give Depp two movies of his absolute choice and taste for every future Pirates film he makes… aesthetic freedom and scores of millions… too tempting.)

The simple version of the story is that Captain Jack owes Davy Jones his soul, but Jack has an idea of how to keep it. Young lovers Will Turner & Elizabeth Swann get involved again because of a fiendish bureaucrat that wants something from Jack as well. And then, we're off to the races.

Davy Jones and his crew spend a lot of time underwater, unlike the pirates from the first film who rode the high seas and showed their true selves in the moonlight. So, accordingly, they have suffered the undying indignities of an underwater life… from things as basic as barnacles to the squid that has overtaken Davy Jones head. This particular effect is as intimate and as unflinchingly real as any effect ever put on screen… literally seamless. This is work on the level of Kong in King Kong last year. Like Kong, the brilliance of the work here is the expressiveness. Even the great moment you've surely seen in advertising of Jones playing the organ with an assist from his most intimate mollusk pales a bit from such "simple" (they make 'em look simple) moments as looking Davy Jones square in the face as he thinks, snorts, and speaks.

No small part of the success of Davy Jones was the choice to hire the inimitable Bill Nighy to play the role. Nighy affects a brogue which took me a while to get used to and will have senior citizens praying for subtitles, but we can see his real his eyes and his facial ticks have been recreated perfectly by the ILM magicians as they might exist if covered in squid, are a movie lover's joy. And Nighy was not the only terrific hire by Bruckheimer, Verbinski and casting directors Denise Chamian & Priscilla John (who replace Ronna Kress, who fell off the Bruckheimer wagon after King Arthur). They also added Stellan Skarsgard and 28 Days Later's Naomie Harris, who are both terrific here.

But what people will show up for and keep showing up for through August are the massive action set pieces, one after the other after the other. We have undead pirates, living soldiers, cannibals, round cages made of (sorry... it's a spoiler) hanging over 200 feet deep ravines, sword fights on mill wheels, the requisite cannon balls, lots of fire, even more water, breathy chases, narrow escapes, wenches, witches, romance, and of course, The Kraken.

Speaking of The Kraken, one of the lovely things about this movie is how it really harkens back to Classic Disney while moving forward about as far as effects technology has ever taken us. The Kraken is right out of 20,000 Leagues Under The Sea… except that it seems completely believable, even in broad daylight. And even then, as with most of the effects, you get the feeling tickling the back of your intellect (which you have put on hold in favor of your heart for most of the film) that they could have made it bigger, louder, more… but chose not to go there. The density of the CG work in this movie is astounding, but probably will be even more so as I return to re-examine it. So much of the work is background or subtle while some major effect takes center stage. Really, the guy with the hammerhead shark head is remarkable all by himself… and yet, he is almost always in a secondary position to Davy Jones or some new crew member that distracts you from this cool creation. Hammerhead is a terrific addition, yet the film doesn't hit you over the head with it (literally or figuratively). And that is one of the reasons why this will be a great repeat-viewing movie.

But as I rave and rave and rave, I will say again… it's too long and it gets too confusing, as the original did. But by the time we roll through the third act, the lull moments are a distant memory. Dead Man's Chest is far from a perfect movie. But it has the key element missing from Mission: Impossible 3 and Poseidon and, yes, Superman Returns. It is relentlessly joyful. No one in this movie takes themselves as seriously as the key characters from those three summer wannabe joyrides. And people will overlook a lot in the name of joy.

Fortunately, there is not that much to overlook in Dead Man's Chest. The starched stiff of the original film, Commodore James Norrington (Jack Davenport) is no longer the walking movie dead spot (no pun intended), replaced by the even stiffer Lord Cutler Beckett (Tom Hollander). There is a bit too much tap dancing around the McGuffin. And perhaps in testament to the uproar around Indiana Jones and The Temple Of Doom, there is a little too much sidetracking of the contents of Davy Jones locker.

There is, especially in the first act, a lot to freak out little kids. The standard you can use is pretty basic. If they were old enough to get through the first Pirates with no problem at all, they will be fine here. If they got a little freaked in the first film, they are a little older and should be ok here. If they cry every time the pirates turn into skeletons in the first film, they probably won't be able to handle this one. But like the best of Spielberg (which this is one small step behind), this film really speaks to children of all ages. If your inner child died in a mine shaft disaster a few years back, you are part of the small group that won't enjoy this movie.

No, Pirates 2 will never be as fresh as Pirates 1. That first film was expected to be a complete disaster in the mold of Kangaroo Jack and Treasure Planet and the worm started turning just six weeks out and then it turned out not only to be good, but a wonderful film, centered on a legendary performance by Johnny Depp. That kind of turnaround is a thrill all its own.

Here, we have Depp pushing the envelope a little further. Rossio & Elliott do a nice job unsettling our assumptions about Captain Jack without losing us (see: Matrix Revolutions for many audiences). We have new elements for both Turner & Swann. Smart choices are made about where to take familiar characters (though for me, Ragetti & Pintel are less fun now that we know them… they don't have R2D2 and C-3PO's staying power).

The difference between this and, say, Star Wars, is that there is not the big picture driving the emotional weight of the middle movie. The world is not about to fall to the evil empire. The lives and happiness of our heroes is really what drives these films and it isn't as powerful.

But sitting back in that theater, watching some old friends going through the paces, louder, faster, and funnier, is an unmitigated pleasure. I can't wait to see this one again and next summer, to finish this particular thread with Pirates of the Caribbean: At World's End. There are story turns hinted at, some of which are hard to imagine happening and others that would be so delicious that kids (old & young) would return their candy to the snack bar, utterly overstuffed with giddiness. But we'll see whether 3 takes us that one step further.

Meanwhile, Pirates 2 turns the sluggish summer on its head and makes me optimistic about enjoying summer movies - well, some summer movies - again.

Last edited by Interconnector; June 26th, 2006 at 08:33 AM.
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  #21  
Old June 26th, 2006, 02:23 PM
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These are great reviews. Thanks for sharing, Interconnector and Amby. 10 more days!
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Old June 26th, 2006, 04:22 PM
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Another great review....they will be pouring in now. I love how this review says, "this will be a great repeat-viewing movie". It does sound as if there is so much to see, so much action and special effects, that everyone will want to see it a second time (or more). I know we, of course, will see it too many times to count !!!
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Old June 26th, 2006, 08:07 PM
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Originally Posted by Pumpkin Spice
Orlando had the slightest role? I wonder if that means least amount of screen time, or just least amount of significance.
I'm glad Moriarty loved it though. He's the AICN reviewer I have the most faith in. I can't wait! Less than two weeks now!
I was wondering the same thing. But I read the novel and it seemed as if he had pleanty to do. If they mean slightest role as in significance then I can understand that... in the first film he was at center because they needed his blood to lift the curse, but that not true this time around.

Either way I cannot wait for this movie.
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Old June 27th, 2006, 12:21 AM
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Thank you Interconnector! I only read the bolded part of that last review so I'm not spoiled, but it sounds good so far.

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Originally Posted by ms_erupt
Agreed and agreed. If it was Attack of the Clones I would have no choice but to cry into my keyboard.
Major ditto.

Malene, Empire Strikes Back is my fave SW too!
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Old June 27th, 2006, 10:41 PM
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This is half review half comparison with Superman but the person who wrote it has still seen the movie.

Quote:
Frame by frame, minute by minute, "Pirates of the Caribbean: Dead Man's Chest," the sequel to the 2003 smash hit, is far more enjoyable and playful than "Superman Returns," the new sequel to the "Superman" series that came to a halt a decade ago.

While neither movie is supposed to be taken too seriously, "Pirates: Dead Man's Chest" never even tries to pass as anything more than a movieish adventure. Like Bryan Singer's, Gore Vrebinsky's flick is summer popcorn fare. The other thing that the two movies share is running time: two and a half hours. But that's about it.

As I pointed out in my review of "Superman Returns," the film is a mixed bag. While delivering the basic goods, it can't overcome some major shortcomings: Standard plot, a poorly conceived villain, flatly played by Kevin Spacey, and a wooden performance from newcomer Brandon Routh (who lacks humor) in all of his roles.

Unlike the new "Superman," though, the new "Pirates" reenergizes a genre that has long been dormant in American film: the sea action-adventure-swashbuckling picture that many of us still associate with Errol Flynn's Warner films of seven decades ago, or of Burt Lancaster's in the 1950s.

I'll offer a formal review of "Dead Man's Chest in a few days," but for now I'd like to point out the achievements of Verbinski's second installment to a franchise, whose third segment has already been shot and is in the can.

Talent

The new movie boasts plenty of talent in front and behind the cameras. It is co-written by Ted Elliott and Tery Rossio, who also scripted the first film, and claim to their credit "Shrek" and "Aladdin." The brilliant production design is by Rick Heinrichs, who garnered an Oscar for "Sleepy Hollow," which also starred Depp. The visual effects are supervised by Bill George, Oscar winner for "Innerspace" and Oscar nominee for "Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban."

Plot and subplots

In the new swashbuckling follow-up, the eccentric Captain Jack Sparrow is caught up in another tangled web of supernatural intrigue. Though the curse of the Black Pearl has been lifted, an even more terrifying threat looms over its captain and scurvy crew: It turns out that Jack owes a blood debt to the legendary Davy Jones (Bill Nighy), Ruler of the Ocean Depths, who captains the ghostly Flying Dutchman, which no other ship can match in speed and stealth.

Unless the ever-crafty Jack figures a cunning way out of this Faustian pact, he will be cursed to an afterlife of eternal servitude and damnation in the services of Jones. This startling development interrupts the wedding plans of Will Turner and Elizabeth Swann, who once again find themselves thrust into Jack's misadventures, leading to escalating confrontations with sea monsters, very unfriendly islanders.

Iconic hero

Arguably, Captain Jack Sparrow is the only truly iconic screen character to have yet come out of this new millennium. It's a wholly original and thrillingly eccentric creation, conjured by the famous shape-shifter Depp, as the ducking, weaving, highly superstitious pirate captain of dubious morality and personal hygiene. Depp has become the screen anti-hero for a new century of moviegoers.

Co-writer Terry Rossio claims that one of the archetypes that's really underused in American cinema is the trickster character: "The fun thing about Jack, who's definitely a trickster, is that he's not particularly good at avoiding getting caught. He will get caught, you just can't hold on to him for very long. Jack knows that is he can just bide his time, eventually the world will come over to his side, and that gives him a sort of supreme confidence that he can handle just about any situation."

New characters

Among the new characters, you'll find: Tia Dalma (Naomie Harris), a flamboyant soothsayer; Bootstrap Bill (Stellan Skarsgaard), Will's long-lost father, who appears out of nowhere; Lord Cutler Beckett (Tom Hollander), ruthless pirate hunter of the East India Trading Company sets his sights on retrieving the fabled "Dead Man's Chest."

Good villain

According to legend, whoever possesses the Dead Man's Chest gains control of Davy Jones. Beckett intends to use this awesome power to destroy every last pirate of the Caribbean once and for all. For times are changing on the high seas, with businessmen and bureaucrats becoming the true pirates, and freewheeling, fun-loving buccaneers like Jack and his crew threatened with extinction.

First adventure, then romance

Rather shrewdly, "Pirates: Dead Man's Chest" puts aside the romance between Will Turner and Elizabeth Swann, because the filmmakers know that it's rather boring. Moreover, the writers have gone out of their way to keep the lovers apart (a subplot that can't be revealed here), because once the couple is reunited, their story has nowhere to go. I will not describe the relationships among Jack Sparrow, Will and Elizabeth as a romantic triangle, but suffice is to say at this point that there is erotic tension between the Captain and the feisty lady.

New type of heroine

Traditionally, the action-adventure genre has done very little for women, but no more. Elizabeth is conceived as a new type of heroine, as brave, feisty, and cool as the men, both heroes and villains; just watch Keira Kneightly sword, fight, and run. Unlike Lois Lane (Kate Bosworth, for some reason brunette rather than blonde) in the new "Superman" movie, who is still the damsel in distress, Elizabeth is decidedly not the lady-in-waiting.

Terrific cast

Since the first movie, all three actors have gained stature, popularity, and Oscar nominations too. Johnny Depp, is now a two time-Oscar nominee, for the first "Pirate" in 2003 as well as for "Finding Neverland," a year later, in which he played "Peter Pan" creator J. M. Barrie.

As Will Turner, British heartthrob Orlando Bloom, has since appeared in the last segment of "The Lord of the Rings: The Return of the King," which swept the 2003 Oscars, and "Kingdom of Heaven." Young and beautiful Keira Knightley, who returns to the second installment in the role of Elizabeth Swann, was nominated last year for the Best Actress Oscar in "Pride & Prejudice."

Johnny Depp

Captain Jack Sparrow is joined by a roistering shipload of characters that are both new and familiar. But, ultimately, the series belong to the multi-gifted Depp, as the decidedly eccentric Captain Jack Sparrow, caught up in another tangled web of supernatural intrigues. With the Pirates movies, Depp has instantaneously created an authentic screen icon, embraced by the entire world. Depp, as is know by now, in one of the world's most popular and acclaimed actors, with a hugely versatile range of performances marking his outstanding career.

Penny Rose's costumes for the leading players indicate their transitions as characters. But for "Dead Man's Chest," there are virtually no changes at all in Depp's Jack Sparrow costume. Says Rose: "Johnny Depp just feels dead right. He's added a few things this time. He's a very thoughtful, caring actor in terms of how he looks in character." Sparrow's now-famous look was collaboration between Penny Rose, key makeup artist Ve Neill, key hair stylist Martin Samuel, and Depp himself.

Dazzling adventures

The natural locations and sets designed by Rick Heinrichs unleashed his limitless imagination, providing "Dead Man's Chest" with vastly scaled and richly imaginative backdrops, not to mention a small fleet of new ships, including a redesigned, rebuilt and fully seaworthy Black Pearl, Davy Jones' magnificently detailed and terrifying Flying Dutchman; and the sleep 18th century British merchant ship Edinburgh Trader.

In one of the film's many highlights, there's a three-way swordfight between Jack Sparrow, Will Turner, and James Norrington on a huge, runaway mill wheel. It's one of the most dazzling and complex sequences yet seen in an adventure film. Among the dangers of this remarkable scene was the fact that heavy coconuts were occasionally dropping from nearly 100-foot-tall palms while it was being filmed, with some of the crew donning hardhats, and Gore Verbinski wearing a good, old-fashioned, "Gunga-Din"-style pith helmet.

Summer's most pleasurable movie

A fantastical epic-adventure that moves at a brisk pace and takes audiences on an endlessly and relentlessly wild ride, "Pirates: Dead Man's Chest" is the kind of movie that should appeal to children as well as adults.

The Pirate movie genre

The first on-screen image in a live-action Disney feature was a close-up of the skull and crossbones Jolly Roger flag in the classic 1950 version of Robert Louis Stevenson's "Treasure Island." The movies reinvent and reinvigorate a moribund genre, from childhood classics like "Treasure Island" and Howard Pyle's Book of Pirates," to such classic movies as "The Black Pirate," "The Buccaneer," and "The Crimosn Pirate," the swashbuckling tales of high seas derring-do both nefarious and noble were seemingly never-ending. However, for decades, pirates were forgotten by filmmakers as subjects worthy of big-screen entertainment.

The "Pirates" series is inspired by the Disney theme parks attraction, which has enchanted generations since 1967 debut in Disneyland. The attraction which utilized the then brand-new technology of audio-animatronics, soon became a major part of pop culture, with its cheery refrains "Yo ho yo ho, a pirate's life for me (and the warning "Dead men tell no tales) sung and quoted by millions.
EDIT: And a spoiler free review from OhJohnny.net

Quote:
So you've read the book, and you think you know what's coming. Well, maybe, up to a point, but nothing can prepare you for the sheer magnitude of swash and buckle in Pirates of the Caribbean: Dead Man's Chest.

If you impressed by the adventure of the first movie, you aint seen nothin' yet! This movie is like getting on a roller coaster that gets faster, with higher and higher rises, and deeper drops as you go along. There are so many things in it to relish.

First off, we get to see Captain Jack being... well... Captain Jack very early on and he's just as loveably, funny, handsome, and mysterious as ever. Through interactions with his crew we learn about what we've missed since the last movie and from the very beginning we see what's happening to Elizabeth and Will.

The sets are incredible. From Davy Jones' ship to the bayou home of Tia Dalma the Voodoo and the white sands beaches of Exuma. The music is jolly, sweeping, mournful, taking you along on the ride seamlessly blending into the action on screen, not taking away but emphasizing it. We all expect the highest and best when it comes to Johnny's acting, and he brings Jack, er Captain Jack Sparrow back, showing us more of the depth of the character who can barter with the devil himself without flinching.

Orlando has also come into his own in this more mature Will Turner role, sword fighting and adventuring with the best of them. A lot more of Will Turner's inner workings and his deep ethics and loyalty are revealed this time around, while Kiera's Elizabeth also shines more brightly. We see her bantering with Jack and holding her own, exchanging dialogue that has double-entendres and seething with sexual innuendo.

Can you tell I loved this movie?

As with any good play, the first act sets up the story, and the second act takes you deeper within, to the darkness and twists and turns, leaving you with a cliff-hanger ending. The ending for this is not exactly what I imagined, but I can tell you, you will realize that the story must go on and be very happy for that.

I have one more thing to say. Captain Jack Sparrow had one of the most memorable entrances in movie history in Pirates 1. I believe his exit in Pirates 2 will rank up their with the best, most memorable exits in movie history, too.
EDIT: And Richard Wilkins, the entertainment reporter from Australias Today show gave the movie two thumbs up.

EDIT: This is the last one, i promise

YourMovies

Quote:
Disappointed with the latest "X-Men"? Bored by "The Da Vinci Code"? Never fear, Jack Sparrow is here!

Blockbuster season finally hits a pot of gold with "Pirates of the Caribbean: Dead Man's Chest", the highly anticipated sequel to 2003's swashbuckling adventure "Pirates of the Caribbean: The Curse of the Black Pearl". Big action scenes, creative special effects and a huge dollop of comedy come together for a follow-up that's even better than the original.

And then there's Johnny Depp, character actor extraordinaire, who reprises his Oscar nominated role as quirky pirate Captain Jack Sparrow.

On their wedding day, Will Turner (Orlando Bloom) and Elizabeth Swann (Keira Knightley) are arrested for aiding Jack, who remains at the top of the authorities' most-wanted list. The sentence is death, unless Will agrees to find the pirate outlaw and bring him home.

Will's journey thrusts him into another tangled web of supernatural intrigue. While the curse of the Black Pearl has been lifted, the legendary Davy Jones (Bill Nighy) - the Ruler of the Ocean Depths - is on the hunt for Jack, who owes the tentacled monster a blood debt.

The only way to escape Davy Jones's grasp is to retrieve the fabled Dead Man's Chest, which has the power to destroy every last spirit of the sea forever.

Directed by Gore Verbinski, "Dead Man's Chest" is expertly staged, from period costumes to eye-popping stunts. The best sequence takes place on a primitive island reminiscent of Peter Jackson's "King Kong", where Jack must escape the clutches of the tribesmen who plan to cook him for dinner. Other highlights include a deadly confrontation with a giant octopus, numerous sea battles and a traditional swordfight on a white sandy beach.

The key to this franchise's success is that it doesn't take itself seriously. Depp's performance is brilliantly eccentric; you almost expect him to stare down the lens of the camera and wink at the audience. The screenplay is full of wisecracks and colourful characters, complimented by Hans Zimmer's energetic score.

"Dead Man's Chest" feels like a direct continuation of the story rather than a stand-alone sequel. Even the ending, which features a terrific twist, serves as a cliffhanger for the third instalment.

Thankfully, audiences only have to wait until May 2007 to see "Pirates of the Caribbean: At World's End".
EDIT: Ok i lied
One more positive one from The Sun

Quote:
OUR film spy The Sneak has become one of the first to see Pirates Of The Caribbean: Dead Man’s Chest.

Here is what he thinks of the follow-up to the swashbuckling original.

WHEN Hollywood has a big hit it usually makes the mistake of filming a string of copycat movies of the same type.

Fortunately we have not had to suffer such stolen booty in the wake of Pirates Of The Caribbean.

Perhaps rival studios realised they could not find a sea-rat to beat Johnny Depp’s much-loved character Captain Jack Sparrow.

Instead, fans are being treated to not one but TWO Pirates sequels.

The first is Dead Man’s Chest. And I am relieved to report that the Pirates franchise has plenty of sea legs.

The new threats to our heroes Captain Jack, Will Turner (Orlando Bloom) and Elizabeth Swann (Keira Knightley) are terrifying. There are sword fights on mill wheels, bloodthirsty soldiers, cannibals, cages hanging over 200ft ravines, witches, and, of course, undead pirates.

On top of all that, the stars have to face legendary gargantuan sea monster the Kraken. This is a classic Disney creation which brings back memories of 20,000 Leagues Under The Sea.

The scenes involving the Kraken are spectacular. There are truly “wow” moments which remind us how computer technology has transformed cinema.

The Kraken can be summoned by Davy Jones, captain of ghost ship The Flying Dutchman which, according to seafaring folklore, must sail the seven seas for ever.

In the movie Jones — played brilliantly by Brit actor Bill Nighy — is a mutant cross between a man and a squid. Trouble starts when Jack finds out he owes a blood debt to Jones.

With time running out, Jack must find a way out of it or be doomed to eternal damnation.

But his maritime mission also manages to wreck the wedding plans of Will and Elizabeth.

They get tangled up in the net of intrigue and join him on the adventure to find the Dead Man’s Chest, which may contain a treasure that Jones will accept as payment for the blood debt.

Depp rolls out an even more eccentric performance than in the first movie. And once again his camp, swaggering, roguish Jack and sea-salt-of-the-earth skulduggery steals the show.

But he leaves some playful plunder for Bloom, who gets to ditch Will’s goody-goody side, and Knightley, whose character gets more involved in the action-packed fight scenes.

The Pirates trilogy is ship-shaping up to be the Indiana Jones of the 21st Century — a wonderful threesome of fun treasure hunts with evil enemies which are not too scary for the kids.

Jack Sparrow is as loveable as Harrison Ford’s Indiana. But, sadly, Pirates director Gore Verbinski does not manage to keep his sequel as tight as Steven Spielberg’s Indiana series.
At two-and-a-half hours, Dead Man’s Chest is about 30 minutes too long and there are so many twists that the plot sinks without trace along the way.

The other major gripe is that it is a link film between the original and the next, At World’s End.

I would have been happier if this movie had stood alone. The film- makers, though, decided to leave us with a real cliffhanger.

This, of course, makes sense for Disney as the audience is left gasping in anticipation for Pirates 3, which comes out next year.

The script certainly hints at fascinating twists and turns for the future swashbuckling adventure.

And be warned — stay in your seat until after the credits. There is a brilliant surprise that you will really want to see.

All in all, Dead Man’s Chest will not disappoint fans because there is another roller-coaster ride of greed, torture, romance and escapade.

And I am more than ready to set sail when Pirates returns again next year.

Last edited by Interconnector; June 28th, 2006 at 10:13 AM.
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