Wednesday, May 25, 2011
Pirates of the Caribbean IV: On Stranger Tides
I just saw this today. It wasn’t bad, and it certainly did not suck the will to live out of me like number III did, but neither did it engage me emotionally at all. The visuals are all beautiful, and the script was passable, but I didn’t feel that anyone in the film cared about what they were doing, so consequently neither did I. Admittedly I went in with very, very low expectations, and was pleasantly surprised that it wasn’t a terrible movie, but when all was said and done I never once felt the slightest pang of concern for any of the characters, nor relief at any of the rescues, and I think I smirked two or three times, and chuckled quietly once.
Compare that to the first Pirates movie, which is still one of my favorite films, or the two sequels, which at least generated massive feelings of anger, rage, and WTFuckery, and I am forced to conclude that On Stranger Tides will be forgotten within a few weeks. And this is not a slight against the actors, either. Johnny Depp is hitting all the right notes as Capt. Jack Sparrow, but he seems to do it with all the feeling of an animatronic Disney robot. Geoffrey Rush’s Barbosa is as blustery and leering as ever, but it’s the bluster of a perfectly crafted waxwork. Penelope Cruz is beautiful, and puts me in mind of Valeria Galino or Catherine Zeta-Jones, but her breathy performance lacks any passion. Even Ian McShane’s Blackbeard is fun, and charismatic, yet when the time comes for his true evillness to manifest it just isn’t there But, that being said, the scenery is lush, the CGI flawless, and the mermaids stunning…if deadly. The technical aspects of this film are top notch, and though the ending is very derivative of a certain adventuresome archaeologist’s penultimate outing I wasn’t sorry I watched it. I only wish I was glad I did.