PIRATES OF THE CARIBBEAN: ON STRANGER TIDES Review

by     Posted 3 years, 165 days ago

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As a fan of the first three Pirates of the Caribbean movies, it’s going to be tough to find a bigger disappointment in 2011 than Pirates of the Caribbean: On Stranger Tides.  While it would be reasonable to expect that the sequel may not be as good as the original trilogy, the extent to which the film misunderstands story, pacing, action scenes, its own history, and its main characters, is mind-boggling.  The film does almost nothing right and it’s a tedious chore that sails through gigantic plotholes, lazy screenwriting, poor characterization, and reduces the scale and creativity of the previous films.  I would rather be cursed by the Aztecs, spend 100 years before the mast serving aboard the Flying Dutchman, and get devoured by a kraken than endure another viewing of On Stranger Tides.

The film makes a serious misstep by spending the majority of its first act not on the high seas, but stuck in London.  It’s an interesting idea on the page, but it makes the story and scope feel constrained.  Captain Jack Sparrow (Johnny Depp), having come to London to kind-of rescue his friend Mr. Gibbs (Kevin McNally), instead falls in with former flame Angelica (Penelope Cruz) and is forced onto the ship of Blackbeard (Ian McShane).  It’s been prophesized that Blackbeard will be killed by a one-legged man and he’s hoping to get to the Fountain of Youth so he can avoid that fate.  Meanwhile, the English are also racing against the Spanish to get to the Fountain.  The one-legged Barbossa (Geoffrey Rush) has gone from pirate to privateer in the King’s navy and is leading the British expedition.  Barbossa has taken Gibbs along for the ride since Gibbs memorized the map before destroying it.  The two ships (three if you count the mostly irrelevant Spanish expedition) begin a tedious and ill-defined race to the fountain that lack any excitement, cleverness, or joy.

PIRATES OF THE CARIBBEAN: ON STRANGER TIDES

I’m baffled at how screenwriters Terry Rossio and Ted Elliott could so deeply misunderstand how Jack Sparrow fits into a movie.  Yes, he’s always been the star, but he can’t work inside a vacuum.  Sparrow needs the proper dynamic to be effective and the first three movies provided him with that dynamic by playing him off Will and Elizabeth.  On his own, Jack is a static character.  He can’t grow because he’s so carefully defined by his many idiosyncrasies that changing him risks ruining the character.  Instead, it’s better to set him against characters who do develop and his presence becomes crucial in their development as he seeks to obtain his own goals.

On Stranger Tides doesn’t provide Jack with the supporting characters that he needs to function.  The movie tries to provide a competent foil with Angelica, but she’s not a developing character either.  No one in this movie has an arc.  Everyone is the exact same person they were at the beginning of the movie and so everyone is rendered inert.  No one has to adapt, compromise their values, or rise to the occasion.  It doesn’t help that Angelica, the character closest to Jack other than Barbossa, is the bland tough-gal chick you’ve seen a billion times before and the movie almost drops her entirely in the second half anyway.

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It’s tough to blame Cruz or any of the cast when the characters are so poorly written.  In previous Pirates films, the villain at least engendered our sympathies.  Barbossa and his crew of undead pirates were bad guys, but they were also damned souls whose punishment of spending cursed treasure was in excess of their crime.  When Barbossa laments that he no longer feels the spray of the sea or the wind in his face, you pity him even if you can’t condone his actions.  In the sequels, Davy Jones is also a cursed man whose broken heart turned him into a horrible monster.  But there’s no sympathy for Blackbeard.  Even when the film tries to build up the father-daughter relationship between him and Angelica, it undermines it with one of the worst scenes I’ve ever seen.

Here’s what happpens: Jack, Angelica, and Blackbeard have reached the island where the Fountain of Youth is located.  They reach a chasm and the bridge has been destroyed so Blackbeard tells Jack to jump in below and reach the other side so he can obtain a pair of silver chalices needed to complete the extended-life ritual.  Keep in mind that Jack is being carted along because they need him to find the fountain.  Earlier in the story, Blackbeard compels Jack by using a Jack Sparrow voodoo doll.  And yet when they reach the chasm, Jack refuses.  The logical recourse for Blackbeard would be to use the doll and torture Jack until he jumps.  Instead, there’s a stupid roundabout scene where Blackbeard does long-form Russian roulette with Angelica, Jack tries to stop Blackbeard by asking the party’s clairvoyant zombie pirate if he’ll survive the jump, the zombie pirate chucks the voodoo doll over the cliff, it survives, and so Jack jumps.  Keep in mind: the entire time, Blackbeard needs Jack alive.  Sparrow is neither expendable nor is he trustworthy but he’s the one who has to get the chalices.  The stupidity of this entire scene punched my brain into a semi-coma.

And On Stranger Tides had been pulverizing my brain for a good hour and a half before this scene even happens.  The screenwriting is excruciatingly lazy by relying too heavily on coincidence.  Twice in the first hour does Jack end up where no one could have predicted and is either saved (by his father who randomly appears and disappears with no explanation for either) or drugged (by zombie pirate) because those character just happened to be where he showed up.

I could go on and on about the story problems.  A mermaid’s tear is required for the Fountain ritual, but Barbossa and his crew don’t get one, and carry on anyway.  There’s a romance between a missionary (Sam Claflin) and a mermaid (Astrid Berges-Frisbey) that is so anemic it’s pretty much irrelevant.  If Blackbeard has the power to zombify his crew to make them more compliant, then why doesn’t he do it to everyone?

Even if you want to say “Well I don’t go into a Pirates movie expecting good characters or a solid story!  I just want to have fun!”* You’re still going to be screwed.  While not everything in the Pirates sequels work, they at least have the audacity to go big.  There’s a kraken, a long sword fight on a giant wheel, and an intense ship battle inside a massive whirlpool.  Nothing in On Stranger Tides comes anywhere close to that scope.  Rob Marshall is a competent director, but the film illustrates the tremendous contributions that previous director Gore Verbinski brought to the series.  Verbinski knew when to make the scenes operatic, lighthearted, and knew how to pace a set piece.  The chase through the streets of London is lifeless, the fight against the mermaids is too brutal to be enjoyable, and the swordfight between Jack and Angelica is pointless.

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That swordfight also makes the grave error of calling back the first sword fight between Jack and Will in Curse of the Black Pearl.  In Black Pearl, we already had an idea of who Will was and his personality.  In On Stranger Tides, Angelica is impersonating Jack and kept entirely in shadow so it looks like Jack is just fighting himself, but that decision keeps the personality of the swordfight one-sided.  In Black Pearl, the reason Jack and Will fight is because Jack wants to escape and Will wants to make sure that doesn’t happen.  There’s barely any provocation for the swordfight in On Stranger Tides.  In Black Pearl, there’s fantastic choreography and pacing to the fight where it begins slowly, builds to incorporate more elements from the workshop, adds fun banter between Jack and Will, and then ends in a way where there’s a clear victor and we also get a hint about Jack’s pistol with one shot.  The fight between Jack and Angelica is just two swords clanging against each other and then she throws barrels at him like Donkey Kong.  And then they fight with the British army who show up for no particular reason.  And then Jack and Angelica escape through a convenient trap door.  And then they happen to wash up right where zombie pirate is waiting to put a blow dart in Jack’s neck.  And then I checked my watch and saw there was still 100 minutes of movie left.  And then I cried a little.

There are some occasional good jokes in On Stranger Tides and Geoffrey Rush continues to have a grand time playing Barbossa.  But everything else fails miserably.  The movie is a soulless, hollow mess that assumes that if it just throws a bunch of interesting ideas at you (Blackbeard! Zombies! Mermaids! More Jack Sparrow!) it will all add up to a great film.  Instead, the result an absolute disaster that fails to understand how the individual parts of a film need to function together in order to provide a working whole.  Pirates of the Caribbean: On Stranger Tides may try to walk and talk like Pirates film, but it’s a shambling imposter that even the most notorious scalawag would find reprehensible.

*And you make me sad if you feel this way.

Rating: F

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  • Michael

    I’m really mixed on whether to see this film. It seems that the reviews are really split down the middle.

    • Monica

      Do Not waist your time or money on this movie!!! It was the worst movie ever!!! If you are a die hard pirate supporter wait for the dollar box! Personally I wouldn’t even waist another dollar and I never write reviews but it made me so mad that it was SO So Bad that I had to warn those that haven’t seen the movie yet! It’s boring has no plot or story line that keeps your attention at all!!!! BAD BAD don’t go!!

      • Kevin

        Coming from someone who can’t spell “waste”, I can’t say I could find your advice reliable.

      • Old Soldier

        This movie CAN’T be as bad as Skyline.

    • ajeet

      really sounds awesome.Isnt it so?

  • Andy

    So you’re saying it wasnt that good??

  • Lynn

    Pirates of the Caribbean: On Stranger Tides is an incredible movie. If you don’t like this movie, I don’t know what will satisfy you.

    • venkat

      yes lynn its true we cant satisfy

    • Rachel

      I agree! I adored the first 3, and now I adore the 4th. People need to stop picking apart the movie and enjoy it for what it is, a light hearted funny movie abt pirates! I have always loved the pirate movies and always will :)

    • Sean

      I didn’t like it, and I can name a pirate movie which did satisfy me, “Pirates of the Caribbean: Curse of the Black Pearl.” It’s a much better film. Pirates for felt like they were trying to do the first film, minus the scale, minus the grounding characters, and minus the freshness.

      Matt’s review seemed to sum up why this film is inferior pretty well.

  • Matt

    Matt Goldberg gives a bad rep to other guys named Matt after this review, please go away

  • KratosRevenge

    I didn’t know that reviews were meant to be spoiler-casts… more like a spoilview, if you will… still, I am going to watch this one. Despite all that, though, I can understand the feeling of being let down, by a franchise that has a reputation of being great.

  • Terry

    I never liked the Pirates movies. Only Depp made it watchable to me because he is so immersed in Jack Sparrow you can’t take your eyes off the character. But nah, I hated all the Pirate movies. They were just big and noisy.

    • fabrice

      i gree with you, total trash movie, the only good is jack sparrow but i think it’s enuff

      i’m kinda dissapointed about depp’s latest proyects.. he’s doing what he was trying to not to do in the 90s, just making big crap movies

  • Bryan montgomery

    I think Critics like yourself take shit way to seriously, if I wanted to see an amazing Pirate film full of wonder and amazement, with amazing writing and very detailed plot development I would hire Christopher Nolan to do a Pirate movie. I think critics should realize what there watching and judge it off of that because if they don’t then every movie will be shit in the eyes of a critic. I think the people should be the press not the fucking “know” it all “critics” This review gets an F for Fucking Retarded

    • Sean

      He’s not judging it based off of wanting to be “amazed.” He’s judging it by the other films in the series.

  • Rune Alexander

    What a crappy review! An F? Seriously. The movie is great fun and really entertaining. And the 3D works great. If people liker the other Pirates-movies they should go see this one. I loved the previous 3 movies, and I loved On Stranger Tides as well.

  • Rune Alexander

    What a crappy review! An F? Seriously. This movie is great fun and really entertaining. The 3D works great. If you liked the other Pirates-movies you should go see this one as well, I loved it.

    • The Opinionist

      I only just realised…all opinions that I, you, or anyone else disagree with is “crappy”. Today I Learn.

    • Dini

      Dude, you’ve just GOT to raise your standards a bit..just because a movie is not a brain-teaser does not give it the license to be of such low effort…even the inane Thor had more laugh-lines than this installment.

  • Dini

    Totally agree with you!
    The movie was beyond BAAAD, stilted we-couldn’t-care-less acting but who can blame the actors when they have zero script/story to work with? The ‘plot’ was more of random disconnected sequences strung together (yes, with random characters popping in and out for no reason what-so-ever)…why were the spanish needed at all in this movie? Cruz’s character is seriously annoying with her half-baked tears over her father’s soul – yet shows no remorse/grief after her fathers death (when actually he tries to kill his own daughter but oh, woe be us to want to spend a second of plot-time on that!). The point of the missionary character defies the brain (why was he strung up on the ship’s mast again?!!)…ah..just too many questions / loopholes in this superbly shoddy movie that it just is not worth brain-time to try and raise them…
    the only reason my group of 5 friends and I sat though this rubbish was because the weather was terrible outside the movie hall! the warmth and the popcorn allowed us to surf the internet on our androids!

  • Reilly

    I have to agree that it wasn’t as good as the first 3 (Espicially not as good as 3) There were a lot of holes in this one comapred to the others and there was more time spent on land then there was on ships. I still enjoyed it mostly but I wouldn’t buy it on DVD.

    I’m a massive fan of the movies and can say comfortably that if you go to this expecting to see a movie better than 1, 2 and 3 then sorry but you will be dissapointed. I thought of it as an “inbetween” side story. Much like how Star Wars had the Clone Wars cartoon series which tied in.

    I recommend to everyone NOT to see it in 3D. They made 2/3 of the scenes extremely dark, which, combined with the dark tinge on the 3D glasses, made it difficult to watch. I actually had to take the glasses off at points to be able to make out what was happening, blurry as it may be.

    • Twilidiot

      There have been a lot of problems with 3D project and movies coming out too dark (see Boston problems with THOR) if the lenses aren’t adjusted properly. I noticed that problem at the POTC premiere at Disneyland but when I saw it in IMAX, the problem seemed to be corrected.

      Even though this is probably the best 3D since Avatar with use of the RED cameras throughout, it just isn’t necessary. I had a long talk with the theater manager yesterday and we were both lamenting that there couldn’t be a showing once a day – or a week even – of these films in IMAX 2D. The cheap 3D glasses certainly don’t help.

  • venkat

    Pirates of the Caribbean: On Stranger Tides is an incredible movie. If you don’t like this movie, I don’t know what will satisfy you.

  • Matt

    All the folks hating on this review, get a life. Goldberg did what he was supposed to do, review the film. Does anyone doubt it will stop POTC4:Legions of the Banal and Insipid, from breaking BO records?

    Depp is a nice guy apparently, but man – after this he intends to remake The Thin Man with Marshall? What gave them the idea they’re up for that?

    It was a long review though.

    • opossum

      I don’t care about this movie or that Goldberg didn’t like it. A

      • opossum

        ** I don’t care about this movie or that Goldberg didn’t like it. A person should be entitled to their own opinions, even when they are inane and overly long rants about how a summer blockbuster doesn’t have acceptable characters, a worthwhile story, etc.

        Perhaps the reason Collider is not as popular a site as it could be is because of Matt. It’s impossible to read anything he’s written as just straight news. He has to incorporate his own snarky and bitter attitude into it all. It’s not funny or endearing, just tiring.

        I’ve seen it said many, many, times in the comments, but this is the reason I rarely ever come to Collider, and will most likely stop coming all together. Some of the articles and reviews by other people who write on the site are genuinely funny and/or fun to read, but they are rarely utilized.

        The movie may very well be bad, but this review sums up everything about Collider and Matt Goldberg that is horrible.

  • Warpcrafter

    Reviews like this from sour, burned-out internet knowitalls make me want to see the film in question even more, because 99.999% of the time, the surly one is wrong. Thanks for the glowing recommendation, you pathetic excuse for a Human being!

  • GiveMeaBreak

    Ignore all the Critics for the time being, and just have your own opinions for the film..
    Don’t follow the Bandwagon of h8r’s..
    I personally thought the 3rd was soo boring… dragged on, And I hated the character arc for Will & Elizabeth in 2 & 3..

    At least the POTC sequels fit within its world unlike Indiana Jones Trilogy + Crystall Skull……AliEns!!!!Refrigerated Nuclear bs, Shia as a monkey swinging….. faIL!!!

  • IllusionOfLife

    I was willing to write this review off because of Matt’s infamous cynicism, but in this case I agree with every word. There was nothing interesting going on in this movie and it was just plain boring. Hollow wooden characters, a paint-by-numbers plot, and no interesting or dynamic action sequences. It takes Pirates of the Caribbean and sucks every last drop of life from it.

    Please Disney, bring Verbinski back for PotC 5&6. Give him enough time to get a finished script (unlike 2&3) and we could have something truly incredible, but if you just keep going on like this you’ll completely bastardize this franchise.

  • swoopy

    Why So Serious?
    It’s just a movie!

  • Non Jaded Critic

    Hmm, Another jaded movie critic, do us all a favor people and just go see the movie

  • Tarek

    Lynn May 19th, 2011 3:53 pm
    Pirates of the Caribbean: On Stranger Tides is an incredible movie. If you don’t like this movie, I don’t know what will satisfy you.

    venkat May 19th, 2011 7:27 pm
    Pirates of the Caribbean: On Stranger Tides is an incredible movie. If you don’t like this movie, I don’t know what will satisfy you.

    question: Who’s who ? ^^

  • Tarek

    I didn’t watch it yet, but I am willing to buy into Matt’s critic.
    I am a huge fan of the POTC, but I was also alittle bit disappointed with the 3rd one, even the action was spectacular. When a story is poorly written, you cannot expect to make a good film just with good actors and Lot of CGI.

    A Good recipe to make a good movie:

    -Good script: 35%
    -Talented director:35%
    -Good Actors: 20%
    -Special effects :10%

    when you have no real story to tell, nor a good director:

    -Good script: 00%
    -Talented director:15%
    -Good Actors: 20%
    -Special effects :65%

    ( Michael Bay…^^)

    • erjino

      JAJAJAJAJAJAJAJA

      Totally agree. As for Pirates… I really think it’s not a bad movie. It’s pretty entertaining, and should be watched at least once, if not in theatres when released in BD. Of course, I’m not a fan.

  • Me

    This franchise died when Bloom and Knightly left. Their characters are strong and Will Turner made me a fan of POTC. Will Turner and Elizabeth Swann are heroes and the soul of the trilogy. I never liked Sparrow: he is utterly selfish, coward and treacherous. He ruined the good people’ lives. The big mistake people keep making is that they expect from Depp the things that he can’t give. Just look: when he was just the part of the story of the main characters (Will and Elizabeth) Depp’s fans complained that Will and Elizabeth are taking too much attention from him (which was ridiculous since Will and Elizabeth are the main characters whose story is unveiling through the movies). Now Depp has everything to have this movie as “his” and his character has the main story line in On Stranger Tides. But what we see? – He still CAN’t grab the control. The weak actors’ background (except of Rush) doesn’t help to make Depp look strong enough. Add to this that Sparrow character is supposed to be weak. Jack’s “popularity” is artificially made by Bruckheimer’s enormous efforts. I was a fan of Pirates for years. I never will be a fan of On Stranger Tides.

    • Law Shay

      Agreed.

      Without the good people, the bad guy is not as bad as he is supposed to be.

      And the badder guy than the bad guy (I mean the main villain) is not as bad as he was supposed to be either. sigh.

  • gfhfghdf

    Not all movies need characters that grow. Not every movie needs to follow the “heroes journey” formula. I hate it when people learn things in basic film class and act like if it isnt the way they learned it, it sucks. Maybe you prefer the heroes journey, but to me… I don’t care as long as im entertained. Does it make me less invested in the story? Sure it does, But i don’t mind so much if theres new and interesting things going on.

    My biggest complaint was the 3D. most of this movie takes place at night, in dark scenes. Very dark… Then adding those damn glasses makes it unwatchable. I removed my glasses as much as i could considering theres a hefty ammount that doesnt use the 3D

  • ringbearer1420

    It’d be pretty hard to be worse than the mindbogglingly goofy 3rd film, but then I remember it’s the same writers, who didn’t know what they were doing then either.

  • Wladi

    Matt’s review resumes exactly what kind of crap this movie is…
    Believe it or not ladies and gents, Pirates has become in another Saw series, they did on stranger tides just to milk the franchise…and with morons that defend and continue going to see it, for sure this money-making-films gonna continue in an endless sequel….

  • adel

    Rob Marshall killed the movie .. i never been angry more than this time

    potc one of the trilogies .. but this sequel is so bad really so bad its a crime to do it like that .. im really so sad

    miss u Gore Verbinski

  • Genuine Generic

    What did you expect?

    The franchise just finally turned into something that it cleverly avoided with the first installment:

    A Disney movie!

  • Casteel

    It sounds like a pretentious a-hole who thinks he is cool ripping apart something people think is fun. He comments on scenes in the movie being pointless but they are no different than his comments, “On Stranger Tides had been pulverizing my brain for a good hour…” I have a friend at work who sounds just like this guy. He claims to be a “writer” and often makes comments like, “As a writer I…” and it usually ends with some asinine statement that makes you want to punch him. He’s the type of guy that hates movies like “The Hangover” and “Star Trek” both of which I enjoyed. I recently read a script of his that included a mutated snake that had been the side effect of some experiment at Area 51. I don’t think I need to elaborate.

    I enjoyed the movie throughughly and think that if you enjoyed the first three you’ll like this one. It was a fun movie. I highly recommend ignoring this article and forming your own opinion.

    • Angry Internet

      Actually, Matt enjoyed both Star Trek and The Hangover. Maybe you guys have more in common than you thought.

  • josh

    The worst pirates of the caribbean movie ever. Go watch days of our lives instead, episode 10143

  • Matt

    The movie was a fun summer movie to see, and definitely focused more so on the adventure part than the action. I’d say its a solid movie, but when you compare it to the first 3 its tough to defend it. There wasn’t any epic music playing in the background, I don’t believe a cannon was fired at all, and Blackbeard is a pussy when compared to Davy Jones. Its absolutely worth seeing, and if you go with the idea that the original story is over and they’re trying to start something new then you should enjoy it. I would however suggest to avoid the 3D, so scenes were pretty cool when they came off the screen, but a lot of the movie takes place in dark areas and with the glasses not being bright enough it can cause some confusion as to what is exactly going on.

    Spoiler——–

    so did that missionary guy die at the end when the mermaid took him under water and swam off????? I didn’t think they really executed that scene, or his character particularly well.

  • rsnow

    I actually enjoyed this movie – and I’m willing to risk Mr. Goldberg feeling sad for that reason. I don’t think “On Stranger Tides” deserves to be called a “soulless, hollow mess”. A lot of time and effort was put into this film, and if you can get past the fact that it’s the fourth film in the franchise, it’s a fun ride. There’s no reason to exaggerate and bash it for the sake of being funny – leave that for a parody, not a film review.

    Mr. Goldberg’s argument that the story is broken doesn’t make much sense – the story easily corresponds to the “hook, rising action, climax, and resolution” structure that any story needs. It’s not a perfect film, but at least it has a story, unlike, say “Sucker Punch” which had great visuals and no story to speak of. I also disagree with the “F” ranking – that implies that this film is up there with “The Human Centipede” in quality – simply not true.

    If you’d like another take on this movie, check out my review on my blog:

    https://robertsnow.wordpress.com/2011/05/20/on-stranger-tides-review/

  • Elaine

    Well I saw it with my boyfriend and 8 year old niece and we had a blast. Put a smile in our faces. It’s a fun popcorn movie, you mr review guy need to relax and enjoy life a bit more. Why so serious?

  • Law Shay

    It is a good movie.

    However, only if you are not a Pirate fan or haven’t watched any previous installments.

    Why ? The three previous Pirates installments are three men show (I mean two men plus a lady show). This one is a one man show. The priest and the Angelina were meant to replace Will Turner and Ms Swan respectively but they failed miserably.

    A reason to this is that the new actress is not as pretty (and hot) as the previous Swan. If I were the director, I’d make Angelina looks like Sarah Corner (from Terminator 2) rather than make her hot unsuccessfully (or get Megan Fox :P). To make the matter worse, the priest’s character is one-dimensional (sigh). The priest is simply an inmature character (I mean the character needs a better introduction).

    Worst of all, it simply miss the true nature of Jack Sparrow films.

    Jack Sparrow is a pirate – a very wicked one. When he says “A”, you might think he is saying “B” but what he really wants was “C” and he gets “C” somehow (by cheating all people around — including Will and Swan). In this movie, Jack Sparrow is cheated, bullied and carried along (instead of him bullying others, he is bullied).

    Very bad move for the new director.

  • Tuhin Chakraborty

    Fantastic Movie!!!! I think Pirates of the Caribbean: On Stranger Tides is one of the best movie released in 2011. Check out more Hollywood Movie Reviews at http://www.batchmates.com/bmtimes/CatwiseCont.aspx?secid=13&subcategoryid=10

  • KNB

    I thought this movie was fantastic!!!!!!!!! im a big fan of #1, not so much #2 or 3, but #4was almost as good as 1!!!!!!!!!!!! GO SEE IT!!!!

  • Ali

    I am a HUGE Pirates of Caribbean fan – BUT THIS MOVIE SUCKED!!
    I was looking for some story lines to be intertwined… but nothing!
    So many dead ends. I was left adrift in the theater wondering where the last 2 hours of my life went. Anyone who says it was a great movie is a zoombie! The story lines were weak and the action was predictable. Johnny Depp is still sexy as he** as Jack Sparrow and that’s the only thing that kept me awake. It pains me to say this, but don’t waste your time or money on this. Wait till it comes out on DVD and spent the $1.50 at RedBox.

  • Vince

    Everything Matt Goldberg wrote in the review above was 100% correct. If you consider yourself a sheep, or better yet a mindless zombie than after you experience this film, you won’t be able to see the difference between the the first 3 movies and this one. But, if you’re not either one of the aforementioned(a sheep or mindless zombie), than you will find yourself totally agreeing with this review.

  • odiaz

    I personally didn’t like this movie, everyone has his/her own opinion but this movie was seriously bad compared to the other 3.

    Story was weak, characters were just a mess since they appeared then disappeared and didn’t add much enthusiasm for the movie. Johnny Depp as always made me stick to the movie although he never made his epic entrance like in the other movies. I never got to see a battle between ships which I enjoyed most from the pirate films. This is not an “F” movie but it is certainly not what I expected, the director had the potential of making something waaayyyyy better.

    I totally agree with this review although I don’t believe the movie was that bad for it to be a total failure. People have liked this movie but as I stated before, everyone has their own opinion and I am just giving my own :)

  • Sarah

    I totally agree! The first 3 films were the best. The writers just stretched out a good ending into a bad film. The zombies thing didn’t go anywhere. The mermaid thing was just one scene. And I think that most of the lines were just for the adverts to make it sound dramatic.

  • Sarah

    Also, there was no point to the 3d. It’s just like they had to as it makes it look newer. It added nothing to the movie, and the glasses cost £1 on top of the cinema ticket!

  • Kevin

    You’re all a bunch of haters.
    Don’t pay attention to this review. If you’re in to history, colorful plots, or just loved the first three Pirates movies, go see this one. Chances are you’ll fall in love with this one too.
    So many people did….48 million dollars on memorial day weekend? Gimme a break. We’ll see a 5th one for sure.
    Enjoy it, and don’t let trolls like this review writer bring you down!

  • Mehana

    The movie is brilliant! For those analytical left-brainers, the joke’s on you. This is a fantasy/speculative fiction film. It’s not meant to be pragmatic or even believable. That’s the genius of it. The puns and literary nuances are noteworthy: “I support the missionary’s position”…one of my favorites. Stranger Tides leaves me beyond excited for #5…drink me hearties, yo ho!

  • Daisy

    I have to say I really enjoyed it! I loved the first, the second wasn’t too bad and third I really didn’t enjoy at all but this one was marvellous! I really enjoyed the way it reverted to the roots of what a Pirates of the Caribbean film is all about; fun. I was also really fond of the scenes in London and thought they really added to the overall feeling of the film without the scenes shot on land it would be another tiresome film exactly the same as the last 2 and so although staying true to the theme of the films (with fear of contradicting myself) it ventures far enough from them to not be boring and just the same as anything else one can watch at home for free.

  • Imo

    Gosh, it’s rather melodramatic. I thought setting it in London was a nice touch, and a good environment for Jack to be in, great fun seeing him with the Duke! Plus he played off Angelica really well, it did reveal sides to his character I don’t remember seeing before.

    Right, the impression I’m getting is that this reviewer prefers the rather wooden acting of Keira Knightly, with a character I always considered to be rather weak, to the fun, powerful and badass Penelope Cruz, which worries me. What I liked about BlackBeard is that we don’t sympathise with him, he’s supposed to be unspeakably evil and a coward. Although I do see what he means when we compare him with Davy Jones, I thought he was a great villain and very good character, he had a lot of depth. There wasn’t depth with Blackbeard, but he was still gnarled and evil enough to be menacing and a genuine threat.

    I hugely enjoyed the mermaid scenes and thought it was one of the best moments, precisely because it was brutal. The contrast between their beauty and transformation into monsters was chilling, plus their movements and attacks were really well done. I also thought the effects for the entrance to the fountain of youth was very impressive, so I don’t think he can really complain about lack of impressive scenes. Sure it’s milder than the great whirlpool battle but there are nice subtleties.

    Actually in some ways this review has made me realise some inadequacies (such as the sword fight and Jack’s father – I would have liked to learn more about that) But overall it’s a bit unfair. It was witty and there were some excellent scenes, and I found myself sympathising with the captured mermaid a lot as well, so there was room for empathy alongside the action-packed adventure.

  • JoseF

    Pirates of the Caribbean 4 is a movie worth seeing over and over again. Although some people did not like it, although if you are 50 or above you may not like it since large majority of the reviews that did not like the movie were people that are above 50. I have seen reviews on this movie that rated it on the relationship between jack sparrow and angelica like what kind of relationship it was witch is very poor criticism, the rest of the bad reviews where from people with no imagination or someone complaining that black beard never did this or never was like that, it is fictional movie!! It’s not based on history. To me this is the second best pirates movie made. This movie is packed excitement, adventure, romance and action with a great storyline and is a fun summer movie for the family. See for yourself if you like it. :)

  • Pete

    Couldn’t agree more with the scathing review, the movie was absolute rubbish. I couldn’t work out why things were happening in the movie at all or rather, I kept waiting for a rwist that never (not even a single time) eventuated. It was bland, formulaic (and they didn’t use the previous films as the formula) and utterly utterly dull. I’m 32 JoseF, and I just finished watching the other movies in a row before this one and almost instantly realised there was something wrong with the pace of the movie and it only got worse as it went along. 1.5 hours of my life I’ll never get back.

  • Pete

    *twist

    and make that 2 hours of my life I’ll never get back.

  • fabíola SPFC

    gostei nao é muito ruim como as pessoas falaram em 3D é melhor ainda nao dúvide ve para cre kkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkk!!!!

  • LITTLE LADY

    I THOUGHT PIRATES OF THE CARIBBEAN: ON STRANGER TIDES WAS A GOOD MOVIE. IT WAS NOT AS GOOD AS THE CURSE OF THE BLACK PEARL. BUT AFTER THAT MOVIE WILL AND ELIZABETH WENT DONE HILL. SHE LOST ALL OF HER TOUGH PERSONALITY AND WILL JUST WENT SAPPY. JACK SPARROW MADE THE MOVIES. BECAUSE OF THAT HIS STUPID SCHEMES MADE THE MOVIE AND HIS WAY AROUND ANGELICA WAS FUNNY. HE WAS MORE SCARED OF HER THEN OF BLACKBEARD AND HOW NO IDEA HOW TO ACT. JACK HAS A GOOD HEART YOU GUYS JUST NEED TO SEE IT. THEY COULD HAVE DONE MORE WITH THE MISSIONARY AND THE MERMAID, LIKE WHAT THEY DID WITH WILL AND ELIZABETH. MAYBE HAVE THE MISSIONARY BE THE SON OF BLACKBEARD. THEY COULD HAVE TOLD WHAT HAPPENED TO THEM AT THE END AND HAVE HAD THE MISSIONARY TURN INTO A PIRATE, AND TEAM UP WITH JACK. I THOUGHT IT WAS A GOOD MOVIE.

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