Pirates of the Caribbean: On Stranger Tides Reviews
"On Stranger Tides" feels as fresh and bracingly exhilarating as the day Jack Sparrow first swashed his buckle, infusing new reckless energy into a franchise that shows no signs of furling its sails.
I never thought I'd miss the overstuffed craziness of Verbinski's originals - the squiddly extras, the moments of sheer pop surrealism, the Kraken - but "On Stranger Tides'' is like a familiar house where half the furniture has been sold off.
The new captain is Rob Marshall, who scrapes off a few of the barnacles that clung to the last effort. But he can't avoid the feeling that this adventure has run aground.
The movie was written by "Pirates" stalwarts Ted Elliott and Terry Rossio. They're funny guys, and the script might well be funny too, but it's hard to tell from the metronome rhythms set for the actors by the director, Rob Marshall...
Producer Jerry Bruckheimer serves up another five-course meal of cinematic fast food, with all the familiar ingredients in exact measurements and just enough flavor to make them palatable.
There's little if anything here to keep us emotionally invested, and so the pile-it-on mutinies and sword fights and perilous dives off vertiginous cliffs exist just to wow us.
This episode feels like the fourth film in a trilogy, wheezing along when it should leap, relying on our affection for recurring characters rather than taking us on a bold new journey of discovery.
It's never quite clear what the relationship between Jack and Angelica is. Sometimes it's love, sometimes it's hate; it probably depended on who was writing the script that day.