Pirates of the Caribbean: The Curse of the Black Pearl

Pirates of the Caribbean: The Curse of the Black Pearl ★★★★

“Theme park movie” is obviously a bit of a buzzword right now, but how have the first three Pirates movies not come up (as far as I can tell at least) as reigning examples of how a film can offer the same appeal as a theme park ride AND still be remarkably well-crafted? Verbinski proves himself such a uniquely talented adventure filmmaker, but his is a formula similar movies should at least try to follow - there is so much camera and character movement, as well as so many clever cuts (which function to great dramatic and comedic effect). The insane mythology these movies create (more so in numbers 2 and 3) is almost certainly too heady to work in any other series and it’s frankly a miracle it works as well as it does in these, but this first Pirates and its two subsequent sequels should be formal textbooks for blockbuster filmmaking.

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