Pirates of the Caribbean: On Stranger Tides (2011) – Movie Review

Pirates of the Caribbean: On Stranger Tides is the fourth installment in the Pirates of the Caribbean series with Johnny Depp, Geoffrey Rush and Kevin McNally reprising their roles with new casts Penelope Cruz as Jack Sparrow’s former love and Blackbeard’s daughter and Ian McShane as Blackbeard.

SPOILER WARNING: Plot and/or ending details follow.

Johnny Depp, Penélope Cruz and Ian McShane in "Pirates of the Caribbean: On Stranger Tides"
Johnny Depp, Penélope Cruz and Ian McShane in "Pirates of the Caribbean: On Stranger Tides"

The fourth film, inspired by the novel On Stranger Tides by Tim Powers, focuses on a fearsome pirate named Blackbeard and the Fountain of Youth although the film is largely not a direct adaption of the novel.

Captain Jack Sparrow (Johnny Depp) does his usual round of escaping and running away from the British authority as well as other captors and keeps the film entertaining with his sly humors. While his loyal first mate and best friend, Joshamee Gibbs (Kevin McNally) aiding him when it is needed.

Captain Hector Barbossa (Geoffrey Rush) returns as a privateer serving King George II and captain of the HMS Providence with a mission to claim the Fountain of Youth before the Spaniards. However, Barbossa has his own agenda of plotting a revenge against Blackbeard (Ian McShane) who has earlier defeated him and took away "Black Pearl" and in the process lost his right leg.

Even with vampire-like mermaids, led by their queen, Tamara (Gemma Ward), the film fails to provide the excitement the first three films managed to.

Unlike the earlier films, Pirates of the Caribbean: On Stranger Tides is directed by Rob Marshall instead Gore Verbinski. Also, unlike the title, the film’s main actions happen on land instead of sea.

Overall, the film is messy, predictable and less adventurous than its predecessors.

  • 7 out of 10
  • Watch it for the vampire mermaids! Otherwise, watch it only if you like the idea of "Pirates of the Land".
  • Yes

Pirates of the Caribbean: On Stranger Tides (2011) Trailer

Pirates of the Caribbean: On Stranger Tides is an adventure action-packed fantasy film and the next installment in the Pirates of the Caribbean series. In the fourth film, Jack Sparrow and Barbossa embark on a quest to find the elusive fountain of youth, only to discover that Blackbeard and his daughter are after it too. Directed by Rob Marshall (Nine, Memoirs of a Geisha), Pirates of the Caribbean: On Stranger Tides stars Johnny Depp, Penélope Cruz, Geoffrey Rush, Ian McShane, Gemma Ward. The film opens on May 20, 2011.

The Warrior’s Way (2010) Trailer

The Warrior’s Way is a visually-stunning modern martial arts western film starring Korean actor Dong-gun Jang who plays an Asian warrior assassin forced to hide in a small town in the American Badlands. Starring Kate Bosworth, Geoffrey Rush, Danny Huston, Tony Cox, The Warrior’s Way opens on December 3, 2010.

The King’s Speech (2010) Trailer

The King’s Speech is a film which tells the story of the man who became King George VI, the father of Queen Elizabeth II. After his brother abdicates, George (‘Bertie’) reluctantly assumes the throne. Plagued by a dreaded stutter and considered unfit to be king, Bertie engages the help of an unorthodox speech therapist named Lionel Logue. Starring Helena Bonham Carter, Colin Firth, Guy Pearce, Michael Gambon, Geoffrey Rush, The King’s Speech opens on November 26, 2010.

Legend of the Guardians: The Owls of Ga’Hoole (2010) – Movie Review

Legend of the Guardians: The Owls of Ga’Hoole is a fantasy animated film based on the book series Guardians of Ga’Hoole by Kathryn Lasky. Zack Snyder, the director of 300 and Watchmen is the director.

SPOILER WARNING: Plot and/or ending details follow.

"Legend of the Guardians: The Owls of Ga'Hoole"
"Legend of the Guardians: The Owls of Ga’Hoole"

A young owl named Soren (Jim Sturgess) loves hearing stories from his father about the legend of the Guardians of Ga’Hoole while his older brother Kludd (Ryan Kwanten, Jason Stackhouse in True Blood) does not believe in the legend. Their younger sister Eglantine (Adrienne deFaria) is captivated by the legend.

One night when their parents are out hunting, Soren and Kludd are captured by some evil owls known as the Pure Ones. They are led by evil Metalbeak (Joel Edgerton) and Nyra (Helen Mirren) who have a secret evil plan to get rid of the Guardians of Ga’Hoole to rule the owl kingdom.

Soren manages to escape from the Pure Ones with an Elf Owl known as Gylfie (Emily Barclay) meeting and befriending Burrowing Owl Digger (David Wenham) and Great Grey Owl (Anthony LaPaglia) along the way who help them to reach the Tree where the Guardians reside and meet a legendary Screech Owl Lyze of Kiel who disguises with the name Ezylryb. When the Guardians learn about the evil plot planned by the Pure Ones, they make their journey to the stronghold of the Pure Ones only to be lured into a trap in St. Aggies and it’s up to Soren and his new found friends save the day.

Overall, it’s refreshing to watch animated film that based on owls instead of penguins. It’s also amazing to watch the fight scenes when the director is Snyder of 300 fame. While the visual effects are great, it is the battle between the Guardians and the Pure Ones which keep the film interesting. Can’t wait for the sequel.

My ratings: 8 out of 10.