Director: Rob Marshall
Cast: Johnny Depp, Penélope Cruz, Ian McShane, Kevin R. McNally, Astrid Bergès-Frisbey, Sam Claflin, Geoffrey Rush
RunTime: 2 hrs 18 mins
Released By: Walt Disney Studios Motion Pictures
Rating: PG (Some Violence)
Official Website: http://www.disney.com/pirates
Opening Day: 19 May 2011
Synopsis: Produced by Jerry Bruckheimer and directed by Rob Marshall, “Pirates of the Caribbean: On Stranger Tides” captures the fun, adventure and humor that ignited the hit franchise—this time in Disney Digital 3D™. Johnny Depp returns to his iconic role of Captain Jack Sparrow in an action-packed adventure. Crossing paths with the enigmatic Angelica (Penélope Cruz), he’s not sure if it’s love—or if she’s a ruthless con artist who’s using him to find the fabled Fountain of Youth. When she forces him aboard the “Queen Anne’s Revenge,” the ship of the legendary pirate Blackbeard (Ian McShane), Jack finds himself on an unexpected adventure in which he doesn’t know whom to fear more: Blackbeard or Angelica, with whom he shares a mysterious past. The international cast includes franchise vets Geoffrey Rush as the vengeful Captain Hector Barbossa and Kevin R. McNally as Captain Jack’s longtime comrade Joshamee Gibbs, plus Sam Claflin as a stalwart missionary and Astrid Bergès-Frisbey as a mysterious mermaid.
No, things will never be the same again –
so don’t you go into the cinema thinking that this fourth
installment of the Pirates of the Caribbean film series will
be anywhere as good as the first movie in 2003. But yes, it
is a true blue summer blockbuster – so you can go into
the cinema and expect a swashbuckling adventure, and of course,
a certain Johnny Depp to keep you entertained for the movie’s
runtime of 136 minutes.
If you don’t already know, the series
of fantasy adventure movies based on the Walt Disney theme
park ride of the same name features the American actor as
the lead protagonist Captain Jack Sparrow: Who else to bring
this somewhat campy pirate to life than everybody’s
favourite Mr. Depp?
In this movie, the infamous pirate crosses
paths with a woman from his past. The only problem is, she
is now the daughter of one of the most feared pirates on the
treacherous seas. Our hero isn’t sure whether he is
still in love with this fiery woman, or whether she is just
a con artist trying to use him to find the fabled Fountain
of Youth. Before he knows it, he finds himself on a new adventure
involving noble Englishmen, devious Spaniards, repulsive zombies
and bloodthirsty mermaids.
You may remember reading the favourable review
of the franchise’s third movie in 2007 on this very
same website (yes, it was written by yours truly), and seeing
other reviews that thought otherwise. It will probably be
the same scenario four year on for this Rob Marshall directed
While some reviewers may not think much of
bombastic action sequences, evidently expensive sets and pompous
production values, this one thinks that these are the exact
things cinema goers look out for in a summer blockbuster.
Who would want to see Depp ponder over life for the entire
movie? Who would want to see him sulking in depression for
over two hours? Who would want to see the Golden Globe winning
actor contemplate over his existence against the backdrop
of breezy beaches?
It’s the season to leave your brains
at the door, and bring out the popcorn to see Jack Sparrow
do his thing! May we also remind you that Depp was nominated
for Best Actor for his portrayal of the campy pirate in 2003’s
The Curse of the Black Pearl?
The strangely attractive Kentucky born actor
once again effortlessly pulls off the offbeat personality
of Jack Sparrow with ease, providing some of the best moments
in the movie. He is paired up with his co star in Blow (2001),
Oscar winning Penelope Cruz as the sizzling female pirate
who has something up her sleeves. Although clothes stay intact
(it’s a Disney movie, after all), the chemistry between
the two is interestingly scorching. One just needs to imagine
a too cool to be true Depp exchanging dialogue with a blazingly
hot Cruz to know what we mean.
Elsewhere, Geoffrey Rush and Kevin McNally
return as Barbossa and Gibbs respectively, while veteran actor
Ian McShane sends shivers with his portrayal of the terrifying
pirate captain Blackbeard. Although their characters are nowhere
as memorable as Orlando Bloom and Keira Knightley’s,
good lookers Sam Clalin and Astrid Berges Frisbey deliver
decent performances as a stalwart missionary and his mermaid
love interest. Also, watch out for cameo appearances by Rolling
Stones founding member Keith Richards and an award winning
shot in Hawaii, this action adventure comedy features breathtaking
views (the 3D effects on the movie aren’t exactly spectacular
though), and one particularly thrilling mermaid sequence which
will change your impression about those bikini clad babes.
Together with producer Jerry Bruckheimer, Marshall has managed
to deliver a respectable popcorn adventure to entertain audiences.
(Will Jack Sparrow return for a fifth time? We are guessing
it’s a yes!)
Reviewed by John Li