"Pirates of the Caribbean: The Curse of the Black Pearl" Film Review

Pirates of the Caribbean: The Curse of the Black Pearl (2003) - IMDb

"Pirates of the Caribbean: The Curse of the Black Pearl" Film Review

Rating: 5/5

By: Nathaniel Simpson

    Arguably, one of the most famous Disney rides of all times is "Pirates of the Caribbean", which transports the riders back into the era of pirates, watching as they pillage and destroy as much as they can. After entertaining millions of guests throughout the years, Disney Studios decide to adapt one of their most famous rides into a film, hiring the likes of Johnny Depp, Orlando Bloom, Keira Knightley, Geoffrey Rush, and many more. What they delivered is perhaps one of the most famous movie franchises of all time, which also contains one of the most famous and entertaining characters in cinema history: Captain Jack Sparrow. 

    Jack Sparrow (Depp) is the captain of the Black Pearl, one of the fastest ships on the sea. Well, "was" is more like it. After being marooned on an island by his crew and the evil Captain Barbosa (Rush), Jack is forced to find his way back to civilization and find a ship to defeat Barbosa with. When he is able to arrive at Port Royal, he is met with the forces of the British Navy, who tries to prosecute him for his piracy crimes. However, when he saves the young Elizabeth Swan (Knightley) from drowning, they decide to imprison him instead.

    Later that night, Barbosa and his crew invade the island of Port Royal, kidnapping Swan and hoping she is the missing piece to help reverse the immortality curse put upon them. When he finds out she has been kidnapped, William Turner (Bloom), who is in love with Swan, recruits the help of Jack to find Elizabeth, leading them on an adventure across the Seven Seas to both save Elizabeth and get Jack his ship back for good. 

    The best part of this film is undoubtedly Depp's performance. He is stellar at portraying his pirate character, and this is definitely the best role in his entire career. He is witty, awkward, full of energy, and just a lot of fun. At the same time, he has perfect chemistry with Bloom's character, and they are able to play off of each other very well. It seems like Bloom serves as more of a foil for Depp's character, showing a character that wants to remain pure and away from the life of piracy. 

    On top of that, the cinematography and action sequences are spot on and a lot of fun. Director Gore Verbinski and cinematographer Dariusz Wolski are able to craft a perfect story by using beautiful imagery and stellar shots of the ocean and the places our main characters travel. The fight sequences are greatly choreographed, and are able to combine that perfect amount of humor, which makes them very unique and entertaining. It is a breath of fresh air compared to other films that deal with pirates and traveling the Seven Seas. 

    Perhaps the one thing that is as famous as Depp's character is the brilliant musical score by Klaus Badelt. The song, "He's a Pirate" is perhaps one of the most famous musical numbers in a film of all time. It perfectly sets the swashbuckling mood for the film, which is combined with feelings of excitement and joy behind the movie. It has been hailed by many as one of the best theme songs in a movie of all time, and it definitely holds its ground compared to other famous film theme songs. The rest of the soundtrack is so spot on as well, and it's nearly impossible to imagine the film with any other musical score accompanying it. 

    It is perfectly explainable why this movie (and the subsequent movies that follow it) are some of Disney's greatest and most famous. Verbinski was perfectly able to take the classic attraction and turn it into the movie franchise it is today. Disney was able to capture Walt Disney's magic perfectly from the attraction, and delivered one of the most fun and entertaining pirate movies of all time.