Monday, April 2, 2012

Monday Sequel Spotlight: Pirates of the Caribbean: Dead Man’s Chest

Welcome to a new weekly feature here at Movies With Abe. In this series, I’ll be taking a look at some famous (and infamous) sequels to see how they compare to the original. I'll do my best to alternate between the greats and the best forgotten. Leave your thoughts or a suggestion for a spotlight in the comments!

Pirates of the Caribbean: Dead Man’s Chest
Directed by Gore Verbinski
Released July 7, 2006

Here we have a film follow-up that preserved almost all of the original’s stars and was helmed by the same director. Yet somehow something went wrong, and the first film’s cleverness was entirely lost for the duration of the second film, and its two sequels, which capitalized on Johnny Depp’s Captain Jack Sparrow being an enormous buffoon. Any shred of intelligence was gone, and Bill Nighy’s tentacled Davy Jones couldn’t save the film either. I graded the F a D+ when it first was released, and I’m sad to say that the successive sequels, which need not earn their own posts, were even worse. What happened was that it was hard to follow up on the notion of this curse that allowed the pirates to be undead yet appear alive except for when standing in the moonlight, and each attempt was more irritating and unfortunate than the one before it, thanks also to a desperate need for mass appeal. The fourth film is the egregious sequel offender, mainly due to the fact that the trilogy was concluded, and after going to world’s end, a fourth entry – without series costars Keira Knightley and Orland o Bloom – was inexplicably necessitated. This is one example of a franchise that would have been much better off as a standalone film – and a cool ride in Disney World.

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