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'Pirates of the Caribbean: The Curse of the Black Pearl' Review

Updated on August 30, 2019

Pirates of the Caribbean: The Curse of the Black Pearl is a 2003 fantasy swashbuckler film directed by Gore Verbinski and the first film in the Pirates of the Caribbean film series. Produced by Walt Disney Pictures and Jerry Bruckheimer, the film is based on Walt Disney's Pirates of the Caribbean attraction at Disney theme parks. The film stars Johnny Depp, Orlando Bloom, Keira Knightley, and Geoffrey Rush.

This swash-buckling tale follows the quest of Captain Jack Sparrow, a savvy pirate, and Will Turner, a resourceful blacksmith, as they search for Elizabeth Swann. Elizabeth, the daughter of the governor and the love of Will's life, has been kidnapped by the feared Captain Barbossa. Little do they know, but the fierce and clever Barbossa has been cursed. He, along with his large crew, are under an ancient curse, doomed for eternity to neither live, nor die. That is, unless a blood sacrifice is made.


Pirates of the Caribbean: The Curse of the Black Pearl was one of my favorite films growing up and it still is today. In terms of pure popcorn entertainment this is one of my favorites (non comic book).

The film was just so entertaining. I think even a little more so now that I've gotten older. Now I can fully appreciate the film for what it is. To say this is the best pirate film I've seen wouldn't be a fair statement considering I haven't seen any outside the Pirates of the Caribbean franchise, but non the less it is the best pirate film I've seen.

The film really only had one thing it had to get right. It was the entertainment, and luckily the film delivered. I'd say most of the jokes landed, even the ones that aren't necessarily great manage to work because of the characters. That leads me to the best part of the film.

Captain Jack Sparrow is the heart and soul of this film and the franchise as a whole. He has become one of my favorite characters in cinema. He was this charming and charismatic enigma. He's not a good guy per say, but you can't help but root for him. Plus the man knows how to make an entrance.

Johnny Depp was born for this role, and he was nearly perfect. The entire cast did a phenomenal job, but he stand out because he was just that good. This still stands as one of the best performances in his career.

The film did so many things well. The set design was amazing. Hans Zimmer gave another great score. It went perfectly with the film. The cinematography was also beautiful. The more horror themed scenes also had beautifully creepy cinematography. The film was also very well directed by Gore Verbinski. The CGI looked great, and I think it still holds up today.

Another thing I loved was the main antagonist Barbossa. What I loved about him was that he had a very realist and understandable motive for doing the things he does. He wasn't the most 3 dimensional character I've seen, but in the moment he was a character I couldn't necessarily root for but he was one I couldn't root against.

I also love the fact that all the characters had different motivations and goals. Jack wanted his ship, Will wanted to save Elizabeth, and Barbossa wanted to break the curse. It made the film feel very natural.

The film was also a lot smarter then it led on to be. After the film ended it felt like all those little things mattered. Jack was seen as kinda dumb for only carrying one shot, and the film played it up as a joke only to turn it on it's head and give it actual meaning.

I thought the plot and pacing really complemented each other nicely. I loved how the story unraveled, and all of the twists and turns the film made. There came a point where you really don't know whats going to happen next, and I love it. For a film as funny as this one was it surprisingly had some really tense moments.

It was just a great film all around, and it really didn't have any glaring flaws.


My three favorite scenes in the film had to be Jack Sparrow's introduction, Barbossa's ghost story, and the climax with Sparrow and Barbossa. The film however really didn't even have a particularly bad moment. No the film wasn't perfect, but it didn't have a single thing that anchored it down.

From the opening scene the film throws you into this amazing world, and from there you go on this entertainingly epic journey steered by a hilariously charismatic performance from Johnny Depp. I think this film is a timeless classic, one that I have seen a hundred times and plan on seeing a hundred more times. This is one of my favorite popcorn films to watch, and one that I truly love.

5 stars for Pirates of the Caribbean: The Curse of the Black Pearl

© 2019 Royce Proctor Jr


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