Friday, May 25, 2007
I had my fingers crossed for this one - after the disappointment of Spiderman 3, I couldn't be sure they wouldn't overshoot the mark, as it seems has also been the case with Shrek 3 (sigh).
Pirates 3, At World's End, is certainly a tour de force, with Bruckheimer literally throwing anything and everything into the maelstrom - Heathen deities, undead monkeys shot from cannons, weddings mid-battle, squid-faces, betrayals, one Rolling Stone, and did I mention there was some fighting?
It opens like Return of the Jedi - Their hero, Jack Sparrow (Han Solo), missing in action, our intrepid team head to Singapore (Tatooine) to infiltrate Sao Feng's keep (Jabba the Hutt's Palace) to get him back... or rather the map that might lead them to... World's End. Seriously, it is a lot like Jedi. It lasts some time, at least it feels like it. Compared to the 2 and a half + hours running of the film though, it doesn't last too long at all.
But aside from that... do you know how difficult it is to talk about this film whilst trying not to give anything away? For example, you don't want to hear me mention things like, a highlight is the moment when we find Jack in Davy Jones's Locker (like a mythological Hades where he's forced to exist in torment), which quite mentally involves Jack living with himself, and himself, and himself - to such an extreme that I was taken aback by the sheer absurdness of the scene (and it did go on quite some time - in fact a lot of the scenes did).
What really makes the film is the plethora of complex characters they've built up over the previous two, the love triangles, and the audience's never knowing exactly who is betraying who and why... until some time later. But, it's in keeping with the spirit, even if the tone sometimes becomes a little too dark (we open with mass executions) and towards the end we have a mid-ship wedding, mid-battle.
Oh, and Jack steals the show... no, not Jack Sparrow... Jack the monkey.
Some plot points began to strain on the believability - and we get close to the feeling that Heathen Goddesses have been shoehorned in - even though it has already been setup in Dead Man's Chest.
Did I agree with the ending? Yes. It's a bitter-sweet one that was fairly surprising considering it's Disney - but then it's all about the franchise.