Friday, May 27, 2011

Pirates of the Caribbean: On Stranger Tides

After spending my three-week midterms shutting my eyes whenever they flashed me a trailer, clapping my hands over my ears the instant they played a quote on the radio, and savagely flipping over newspaper ads, I did the only logical thing a Pirates fan would do - I went and watched the fourth installment on the very day my exams ended.

I really, really liked it. More than the previous two movies. I'm so glad I didn't give myself the chance to listen to any of the bad reviews beforehand, because I really enjoyed On Stranger Tides. I find it really sad that so many people didn't like or even hated it, but I suppose I can see why. It's very rare that a franchise starts up a movie after the end of a trilogy, and when that does happen, it's usually strung-out for money and very dry. I've also heard that people have gotten tired of Captain Jack Sparrow.

Gotten tired of Captain Jack Sparrow!


After The Curse of the Black Pearl, the movies have all gotten successively bigger and bigger, and with Pirates 4, they realised that they couldn't make it - well, any bigger. So they brought it back down to focus more on the very essence of the movie, the characters, which, of course, means Captain Jack Sparrow.

Jackie had me in stitches from the beginning to the end, and he was so very Captain Jack Sparrow it's so nice to see he hadn't lost it. Whether it was the fight scenes, the one-liners, the sashaying, his compass, his love for the Pearl, the amazing ways he gets himself out of scrapes, he was so essentially Jack Sparrow that for me, nothing was left wanting in his character, and that of course left me very happy. I was so afraid that Jack would be all moony over his love interest, that Penelope Cruz girl Angelica, but he wasn't, and it was all done very well in total Jack style. Jack Sparrow FTW!

I really like the plot (although it was marginally marred by inconsistencies of Angelica's character) and though people hated it because it was the typical find-the-Fountain-of-Youth tale, one of the reasons I loved it was because of that. It was a legend, and I love legends. It's been done before, but every interpretation is different and since everyone's already doing new things already, I don't see why others shouldn't have a shot and recreating something old. Personally I think if ever anyone needed a sip from the Fountain of Youth it would be Keira Knightley's character, but I agree that Elizabeth and Will's story was already played out and I'm glad they didn't come back.

And then there were mermaids.




Mythical creatures being a pivotal part of PotC, and those mythical creatures being mermaids, interpreted in the only way mermaids should be interpreted, are basically my wildest dreams come true. Every sequence with a mermaid in it was done amazingly well. The mermaids were as deceptively beautiful, hauntingly hideous and insanely deadly (they have fangs!) as mermaids are supposed to be, especially the incomparable First Mermaid Tamara, played exceedingly well by Gemma Ward. I keep saying that I understand how sailors would willingly be pulled overboard to be subsequently killed - I would, to get a kiss from that mermaid. And Astrid  Berges-Frisbey, our dearest Syrena, mermaid with the best accent ever, looks like Arwen from Lord of the Rings. I suppose I don't have to express my joy at that last bit.

Speaking of which, I doubt that any hopeless romantic can watch this movie and go away disappointed, because I sure as hell didn't. :) That's enough said, and I plead the Fifth. I refuse to go on on the grounds that it might incriminate me. I do remember that this is blogger, not tumblr, and shameless fangirl ships is not frowned upon here.

Because there was a little bit more breathing time in this movie, I got to marvel at the very subtle themes of it. Every movie, action or adventure or whatnot, has something in it that can make you think - it's just buried a little bit deeper and takes a little bit longer to unearth. (Even chick flicks, I suppose, although you might kill your brain in the unearthing process, which would henceforth render you unable to think.) The thin line between right and wrong, and the ever-shifting balance of trust and alliances in Jack Sparrow's character, with the double-crossing and hidden agendas, did keep me happily occupied amidst the sword clashing. I found it funny that it seemed that they were all after the same thing, but they weren't, not really.

Bonuses: Barbossa, who will beat Blackbeard out any day, even though Blackbeard is a legend and Barbossa is not. The Black Pearl, considerably shrunk in size, monkey still intact. Wriggle-in-ecstasy-bone-chilling-goosebump-inducing music, by the one and only Hans Zimmer. Seeing pirates on land. Having a missionary on board a pirate ship. The British. The Spanish (hahahha Catholics). The comforting feeling you get when you know pirate ships still work no matter how many holes they have in their sails.

Never a perfect movie, but getting me to say it wasn't good would be like getting a Potter fan to say that about one of their movies.

Who am I kidding I am a freakin' Potter fan too okay gotta go bye.