Friday, September 12, 2014

Pirates of Caribbean: Dead Man's Chest (Three-Disc Blu-ray / DVD Combo in DVD Packaging) (2006)

Pirates of Caribbean: Dead Man's Chest"UNDEAD MONKEY! Top that!"....Well, Pirates of the Caribbean 2 has a solid go at topping the top-grossing film of 2003.

Johnny Depp, Oscar-nominated for the role of Capt. Jack Sparrow, possible the best-worst pirate ever owing a life debt to Davey Jones, Captain of the Flying Dutchman, another cursed ship. Also returning, Orlando Bloom as Wil Turner, the decent colonialist, who in the spirit of Flynn's CAPTAIN BLOOD, is drawn into the pirate's life along with Keira Knightley as Elizabeth Swann.Wil and Elizabeth are arrested instead of wed and slated to be executed for their part in Sparrow's escape. Wil cuts a deal to bring Jack;s quirky compass in return for a pardon for he and Elizabeth. The three become involved in Sparrow's struggle to free himself of eternal servitude onboard the Flying Dutchman, along with "Bootstrap" Bill Turner aka Wil's Dad. Captain Jack and Wil Turner's unlikely friendship continues in one misadventure after another, with more returning character's from the original than you can swash a buckle with, like Elizabeth's father Governor Wetherby Swann (Jonathan Pryce), the lovable buffoons Pintel and Ragetti (Lee Arenberg and MacKenzie Crook), first mate Gibbs (Kevin McNally) and the fallen Commodore James Norrington (Jack Davenport).

Director of the original, Gore Verbinski again throws the pirates into one amusing action sequence after another, from island cannibals, to an inevitable bar fight, some Treasure Island homages, battles with barnacled minions of Davey Jones and a runaway mill-wheel-three-way duel between Jack/Wil/Norrington that is worth the price of admission and beverages.

Depp's swaggering-staggering Sparrow makes any scene fascinating with his rock star take on pirates. But be WARNED: Pirates of the Caribbean 2 and 3 were produced back-to-back to allow for quicker release of two, meaning Dead Man's Chest is "a link film." And for those of us who endured the ending wait between The Empire Strikes Back and Jedi, you know what I mean. Pirates 2, ends with a bit of a cliffhanger which is always risky. The ending leaves almost nothing resolved and no villain thwarted.

The locales as breath-taking and effects are as stunning as the original, in particular the ship swallowing Kracken. Sadly the brilliant Bill Nighy as Davey Jones is wasted as the overly CGI and effect laden character, who could have been anyone and was less striking than the previous films nemesis. In fact, I would rather see Nighy play Sparrow's dad (who was supposed to be briefly in the 3 movie due out in 2007)

If you liked this movie as a regular DVD, you're going to love it in Blu-Ray. Everything there is to like about the film is even better here. The creepy stuff is creepier, the funny stuff funnier, the special effects more special. In fact, "Dead Mans Chest" fans will probably consider this the absolute best Blu-Ray movie there is. Personally, I prefer Pirates of the Caribbean Curse of the Black Pearl [Blu-ray] for its better storytelling, but this one has equally vivid color, equally outstanding detail and a soundtrack that will blow you away. Disney is obviously using its Pirates titles as its Blu-ray showcase, and has poured in the bucks to make them the best titles on the market.


Though "Pearl" has a better story, "Chest" has the better effects, and its squishy fishy pirates lend themselves better to Blu-ray detail than the first film's skeleton crew. The barnacles, coral, scales and tentacles that cover Davy Jones and his mates are much more visible here than in the standard release, and when Bootstrap Bill stuffs a crawling shell in his mouth you can tell it was hermit crab. In fact, the movie's near-perfect digital transfer reveals new details in nearly every scene, from the dark blue dye on Tia Dalma's teeth to the glisten and glimmer on the attacking kracken.

The images have rich shadows and, amazingly, no grain, so even the darkest details come to life. You can even see that cannibal who traps Will Turner -before he jumps out from the tree.


Wow! No other Blu-ray title sounds like this. Whether it's a simple explosion or the complex chase scene, the uncompressed 5.1 soundtrack delivers the goods loud and clear, with plenty of nuance and perfect channel separation -just like those reference DVDs at a Bose store. Often the sound is so vivid it seems you can watch the film with your eyes closed. The best sequence comes when Davy Jones plays his pipe organ. Turn it up and you can feel it in your spine.


There's just one hi-tech extra, an interactive Liar's Dice game. Here, you're pitted against Pintel (Lee Arenberg) in a contest that plays out through video clips that rarely repeat. Unlike most games of this type, this one renders its visuals quickly, thanks to a new technology called BD-Java. The other bonus features are the same as those on the standard DVD, at the same standard fidelity and resolution.

To sum up, "Pearl" is still better, but if you buy this disc you won't be disappointed. With video and audio that set a new standard for Blu-ray releases, this new "Dead Man's Chest" takes you for a real Pirates ride.

Buy Pirates of Caribbean: Dead Man's Chest (Three-Disc Blu-ray / DVD Combo in DVD Packaging) (2006) Now

If you judge this movie using the same checklist you would for "A Beautiful Mind" or even "Lord of the Rings" you've missed the boat. This movie is a bit more foolish than the others and that is what's so great about it. See this movie through the eyes of a child and allow it to make you laugh, to gross you out, to surprise you with its clever twists of plot, to amaze you with heroes that defy all odds, and to capture your imagination with peculiar pirates' treasures.

Read Best Reviews of Pirates of Caribbean: Dead Man's Chest (Three-Disc Blu-ray / DVD Combo in DVD Packaging) (2006) Here

As someone who's watched the first movie repeatedly, I was extremely happy when the sequel was announced. The first movie had a playful, whimsical aspect that made it endearing and fun to watch. The pacing was excellent, and the characters were well developed.

Sadly, the sequel turned out to be very different. The direction turned to "how many over-the-top effects and fight sequences can we pack into 2 hours." The characters were lost in a morass of confused and often irrelevant action scenes. About the best part of the whole film was [warning: spoiler] Barbossa's reappearance at the very end.

I like a well choreographed sword fight or SFX scene as well as the next bloke, but making a movie that is nothing more than a series of such scenes strung together with minimal plot is ridiculous. This film could have been so much more than it is. Instead, it's too long (I found myself checking my watch, which almost never happens) and badly plotted.

Given the reappearance of several minor characters (Pintel and Ragetti, who were apparently brought back as audience favourites despite the fact that they should have been in prison following the first movie) and the overall tone of the film, it appears Disney's producers saw fit to turn what was an excellent concept into little more than a marketing vehicle designed to appeal to kids.

I'll probably see the 3rd movie just to find out what happens, and to see if it improves somehow, but I'll never buy the 2nd movie's DVD. It's just intolerable.

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MOVIE: Here we go, probably the most anticipated blockbuster of the year. When the first Pirates Of The Caribbean came out it became an overnight success, and of course immediately greenlit two sequels. Dead Man's Chest is a little different than the first film, which is definately a good thing. I would absolutely have hated to watch the same movie again, and thankfully this film brings a different approach to the story and the characters. The first movie was more epic in my opinion. It was very grand with open-sea ship battles, pirates swinging from ropes tied to the masts, firing cannons, and one on one sword fighting. This movie continues in that tradition a bit, but also brings fresh action and humor to the table. Instead of Barbossa and his cursed crew we have Davy Jones and his sea crew. Jack Sparrow is in debt to Davy Jones and in order to keep his freedom he must in turn find 100 men to be on Davy Jones' crew on the Flying Dutchman. In a seperate conflict we have Will Turner and Elizabeth Swann who had their wedding ambushed because a corrupt politician wants to find the dead man's chest so that he can control the assests of the East India Trading Company. Jack Sparrow on the other hand wants the chest so that he can have control over Davy Jones and keep a creature known as the Kraken away. The film basically follows our main characters from one island to another in search of this mysterious chest and the contents it contains. The film is the perfect blend of action and humor that keeps it exciting and entertaining. This is really one of the best action movies ever made. The set design, costumes, makeup, and visual effects were just breathtaking. Davy Jones and his crew are the most creative and amazing CGI characters I have ever seen on film. This usually never happens to me, but I am still in question whether Davy Jones' face was all CGI or a blend of prosthetics and CGI. The area around his eyes, nose, and mouth seemed so real and perfect that I am actually in question if it's CGI or prosthetics. It is simply amazing how much detail has been put into this film. Hans Zimmer steps up as composer after replacing his good friend Klaus Badelt from the first film. Zimmer's score really made the movie for me, it borrowed the themes we love so much from the first score and blends it in with darker and heavier music that truly makes this movie a swashbuckling movie. This movie was so much fun, it was so entertaining, so exciting, and funny. You will have a hard time finding a better time at the movies than with Pirates Of The Caribbean: Dead Man's Chest. It is an amazing continuation of the first film and a great lead-in to the final installment in the trilogy, which will be released next summer.

ACTING: Johnny Depp got an Academy Award nomination for his portrayal of Captain Jack Sparrow in the first movie. Depp is one of the most versitile and talented actors that we have ever seen on the screen. He truly has a presence that cannot be matched and he has crafted an iconic character with Jack Sparrow. Orlando Bloom and Kiera Knightly provide great acting in their supporting roles even though they have less to do with the main plot this time around. The real highlight here is the character of Davy Jones who is played brilliantly by Bill Nighy. Nighy is a British actor relatively unkown to American audiences. He was recently seen in The Hitchhiker's Guide To The Galaxy and The Constant Gardener, and he adds perfection to the character of Davy Jones. The cast makes the movie and they are all perfect in it.

BOTTOM LINE: What more can you ask for? The movie has everything you would want in a summer adventure fare. The first movie was one of the top grossing films of the year when it came out, and I have no doubt that this will do the same. Gore Verbinski was able to handle all that story and make it flow seamlessly, it was always entertaining and never felt long dispite it's long running time. The film was perfect in my opinion, I really would not change anything about it. Also, there is a little bonus for those who stay after the credits. So, go and enjoy the summer's best movie.

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