The Governor's daughter, Elizabeth Swann (Keira Knightley)
lives with her father, Governor Weatherby Swann (Jonathan Pryce
) in luxury at Port Royal, along the Caribbean sea, sometime during
the 17th century. As a child she took a treasure pendant from an
unconscious boy, Will Turner, who was rescued from the sea. It is
now her favorite necklace, but will soon get her into trouble!
Will Turner (Orlando Bloom), is now a master sword-maker,
and makes very fine swords for all gentlemen, and isn't in the
same social class as the lovely Elizabeth Swann. Though he loves
her, he won't proclaim his love for her, because of the difference
in their class, though she wants him to do so.
Her father has another suitor in mind for his
daughter, an up and coming rank-advancing British Officer, Norrington
(Jack Davenport), a man that Elizabeth doesn't want to marry.
During a moment alone with Norrington along a wall of the fortress,
when Norrington was trying to tell her his feelings he has for
her with his back to her, she faints and falls into the water
below, because of a too tight corset.
Luckily for her, Captain Jack Sparrow (Johnny
Depp), a lovable but conniving pirate, who was trying to con two
guards into letting him board an empty ship, sees her fall and
jumps in to save her. For his trouble, he is arrested and put
in the slammer, because of his profession, being a pirate / con-artist
with the gift of gab. However, while in the water, the cursed
pendant sends a signal and the viewer knows that this isn't good!!
Port Royal then suffers an attack from a group
of not so nice pirates, called mysteriously by the pendant. Captain
Barbossa (Geoffrey Rush) and his ruffian pirate followers, all
ex-mates of Captain Jack Sparrow, find the pendant at the governor's
house and take Elizabeth as a hostage. The audience may wonder,
how did they know where the pendant was, and why did they take
her as hostage, and risk the wrath of the British navy, who would
surely pursue them? The plot thickens!
Her hasty kidnapping by this mostly dastardly
Pirate Captain Barbossa and his ruffian pirate followers, will
inspire the unlikely pairing of a wily, rogue pirate mentioned
above, Captain Jack Sparrow ( Johnny Depp), with Will Turner (Orlando
Bloom), with two different goals in mind. Captain Jack Sparrow
wants his ship, The Black Pearl back and has a bone to pick with
Captain Barbossa, who took over the Black Pearl and dumped Captain
Jack Sparrow on an island to die, cutting him out of the treasure
cache on the Isla de Muerta (Island of Death). This mutiny, as
the audience soon learns along with Elizabeth, was a blessing
While on the ship, The Black Pearl, Elizabeth
discovers Captain Barbossa and his crew's terrible secret, much
to her horror. Because the pirates contact with the cursed pendant
treasure, all the men that day who took pendants are now forced
to exist between living and dead, and only revealing their skeleton
forms in the moonlight. This means that they can't feel, eat,
enjoy anything and can't die, until all the pendants were returned
to the treasure box. Step one meant that all the pendants must
be tracked down and brought back to the original treasure box.
Then, to free themselves from this curse and become human again,
step two requires them to sprinkle the blood of the owner of the
last pendant returned. Thus, the pirates intend to not only return
this last pendant, which was formerly in Elizabeth's custody,
but to use her blood to end their awful curse and freeing them
to return to their normal state, as they think she was the blood
relative of the original owner of the pendant. YIKES!
Fortunately for Elizabeth, Captain Jack Sparrow
and Will Turner are determined to find her and her captors, three
steps ahead of the British Navy, led by Norrington, who is none-too-pleased
with either that slippery pirate Jack Sparrow or Will Turner,
who sprung Jack from the cooler in the first place, among other
Jack Sparrow to Will Turner: "You know, for
having such a bleak outlook on pirates you are well on your way
to becoming one: sprung a man from jail, commandeered a ship of
the fleet, sailed with a buccaneer crew out of Tortuga, and you're
completely obsessed with treasure."
The viewer is taken for a ride into adventure
as Captain Jack Sparrow, Will Turner and Elizabeth jump from the
frying pan into the fire in a variety of situations but manage
to survive into the next scene using their wits, courage, ingenuity
and taking advantage of circumstances that come their way or land
in their lap.
The quality of directing by Gore Verbinski and
the talent that went into the screenplay by Anthony Perkins &
Stephen Sondheim, and the efforts of the fine cast all came together
for the entertainment of the audience.
The Director is responsible to bring the film
to life, in the spirit of the screenplay. Gore Verbinski has done
a great job in the past with such comedy/ adventure films such
as MOUSE HUNT, THE MEXICAN and got more experience in directing
the scary horror film, THE RING. Gore Verbinski does a great job
combining what he learned in his previous films, in THE CURSE
OF THE BLACK PEARL, which has elements of comedy, adventure and
scariness and suspense as well.
This film is a very entertaining pirate adventure
movie with something for everyone! Swashbuckling moments, inspired
sword fight choreography, great special effects, intrigue, humor,
plot twists, scary moments, rousing fun, true love and a nice
buildup of suspense in the story qualifies this film as being
a pretty good source of light entertainment. It perhaps could've
used another run by the editor as the pacing is a bit long in
spots, but lovers of adventure yarns don't mind it at all.
Sometimes adventure films are low on quality dialogue,
(such as TWISTER). This screenplay, however, written by Anthony
Perkins & Stephen Sondheim, not only tells a clever adventure
tale but actually develops the main characters somewhat and is
full of witty and entertaining, sparkling dialog, which blends
well with the colorful character parts, such as Captain Jack Sparrow,
and adds zing to the entertainment value.
Will Turner : "Where's Elizabeth?" -----
Jack Sparrow:"She's safe, just like I promised. She's all
set to marry Norrington, just like she promised. And you get to
die for her, just like you promised. So we're all men of our word
really... except for Elizabeth, who is in fact, a woman."
Barbossa : (Talking to Will Turner) "Who
are you?"---- Jack Sparrow:"No one. He's no one. Distant
cousin of my Aunt's nephew twice removed. Lovely singing voice.
The dialogue and its delivery by the ensemble
cast and main characters will keep the viewer chuckling throughout,
making the film a fun one to experience
Since this film was inspired by the Pirates of
the Caribbean amusement ride found at Disneyland / Disney World,
the screenplay of course has bits/ scenes from the ride discreetly
seen in the background of various scenes. These little scenes
from the ride don't detract from the action of the film, but act
like a subtle inside reminder to those who have experienced the
ride. The song/ sayings from the ride also make an appearance,
which can be annoying for some, but should be expected.
The actors and actresses of the film were all
well-cast and work together very well to be entertaining and tell
the story so well.
Johnny Depp's performance was stellar as Captain
Jack Sparrow, which earned him a nomination as Best Supporting
Actor. His portrayal is totally captivating, as he truly becomes
the wily, charming, humorous, devious pirate who will help others,
if his interests are involved and will even throw in free counseling
as a bonus. He has the audience guessing what he plans to do next,
as he is a pirate and not completely trustworthy. How he wiggles
out of one jam after another is entertaining, and his humanity
even shines a little; not bad for a pirate!
The amazingly versatile, Oscar-winning actor,
Geoffrey Rush was also at his best in the role of Captain Hector
Barbossa, the villainous pirate. He made what could've been a
one dimensional portrayal of the bad guy into a performance which
filled him out somewhat, making the viewer aware of his feelings,
his sense of humor, which doesn't excuse his bad behavior of course,
but brightens up the villainous role a bit.
Orlando Bloom is very convincing as young Will
Turner, who learns courage, an acceptance of his background and
the ability to take a stand for what he loves, in his quest to
rescue Elizabeth. Orlando handles a sword very well; perhaps he
learned it on the trilogy of Lord of the Rings filming. ( He was
Up and coming British actress, Keira Knightley
sparkles in her portrayal of the spirited Elizabeth, who often
finds herself in situations way over her head, but learns to use
her wits and courage to survive.
Jack Davenport (The Talented Mr. Ripley) makes
the most of his supporting role of the humorless, stiff British
Officer, Norrington who loves Elizabeth and wants to marry her.
His opinion of pirates - A lost cause: "I intend to see to
it that any man who sails under a pirate flag or wears a pirate
brand gets what he deserves: a short drop and a sudden stop."
This film is rated PG-13 for action/adventure
violence. Not much blood is shown, just lots of fight scenes.
Special effects are scary for children. Sensitive children will
be checking the closet and under the bed for Captain Barbossa!