JJ’s review published on Letterboxd:
There was some slander against this for being based on a theme park ride, but considering the original ride’s theme was literally just “pirates” it’s kind of an unfair association. Have to agree with Ebert that the middle ship battle scene kind of pointless, but outside that this is a perfect screenplay. I’m eternally biased towards swashbucklers, but this has pretty much everything I want from a movie.
Verbinski has the audacity to bring some actual direction to a Disney flick, when you know that sort of behavior was frowned upon on set. Keira Knightley in this might be the most beautiful woman ever filmed, and later female characters they added later show how much this series misses her fiery presence. Jack Sparrow was a much more complex character than is remembered. I recite pretty much every line of dialogue in this in every day life, and have put particular focus in mimicking Geoffrey Rush’s inflections.