Okay, so here we have my first official movie review. Pirates of the Caribbean 3: At World's End. First let me just say that this qualifies as a popcorn movie. Swashbuckling action, cannonballs, monkeys, and pirates abound. All-in-all, I think that this third installment stands strong alongside its two prequels. An added bonus, seeing the latest Transformers preview on the big screen. Cool. Back to Pirates. I enjoyed the opening of the film greatly, it's always good when the 'bad guys' dispatch with a pesky pirate wretch of about 10 years of age. Heartache. I thoroughly dug the guest actors this time around, most famously Keith Richards as (assumed but never directly stated) Jack's father, as well as Chow Yun Fat as a pirate captain. Good stuff. For me, one of the funniest scenes was when we first see Captain Jack Sparrow, stuck in Davy Jones' Locker past the end of the world. He has gone completely mad and is talking with, and sometimes killing, dozens of his doppelgangers. I kept waiting for a fat Mexican lawyer to show up with some peyote buttons, but no luck.
For the most part, it sounds like a great movie so far. And it is. I'm sure it will make a bazillion dollars or so and be well liked. I have only one gripe. The ending. In my opinion, 'popcorn movies' must hew closely to the time honored (or time worn) archetypes of your standard summer blockbuster. To wit, the good guys must win, and the guy must get the girl. I guess Will and Elizabeth do get married, but he's stuck on The Flying Dutchmen for eternity, less one day every decade. Hmm. Captain Sparrow ends pretty much how we found him, alone in a dinghy, off on another great quest. I haven't heard any rumors about additional future Pirates films, and if there were any, I would be surprised if any/all of the cast would return. That said, they at least have an opening for further adventures with Captains Sparrow and Barbossa. They could even attempt a 'rescue' of some kind for Will. I do not think that it will come to pass however.
Now whoa there, don't get me wrong. I loved Pirates 3, would unequivocally recommend it, and will certainly buy it on DVD. Also, the fact that it has a slightly 'downer' ending, at least compared to more standard Hollywood fare would normally be a selling point for me. ADDITIONAL SPOILER ALERTS! Some of my favorite movies end poorly for the protagonist. It is especially delightful when everything is going swimmingly and you think, that after all the trials and tribulations of the main character, it will all end well for him. And then BANG! An excellent example of this phenomenon is Layer Cake, or see also A.I. (kinda-sorta), Alien 3, The Butterfly Effect, and most extra-specially Fallen, a truly great film and sadly little-known in my opinion. I just think of all the poor despondent 12 year old girls who will quite likely go home after seeing the movie and slit their wrists. All because poor Legolas is stuck on a moldy boat for all eternity. Sad.
Anyway, long story short, Pirates 3 is good. Very good. Maybe not way good or gnarly however.