The first "Pirates of the Caribbean" holds my personal record for number of times seeing a movie in the theaters ( - cough - seven - cough- ). I'm not ashamed of it. I swear.
I was more than a little bummed to see that neither Orlando Bloom (my FAVORITE) nor Keira Knightley were going to make an appearance. And all throughout the movie I kept my fingers crossed for some hint of Will and Elizabeth action. But alack! No such thing occurred, so don't even waste your time waiting for it.
I can't really tell you the plot of this movie, because like all of the others in the Pirates franchise, it was a little tough to follow. You never know who is double-crossing who, or which pirate is the most honest. But I can tell you that the story is about Jack Sparrow (Johnny Depp) trying to find the fountain of youth before Barbossa (Geoffrey Rush, in all of his syphilis-encrusted glory) or Blackbeard (Ian McShane) does. It's not as straight forward as that, and when you add in Angelica (Penelope Cruz) who may or may not be Blackbeard's daughter and Jack's ex-lover, things get a little complicated.
There was a strong showing by newcomer Sam Claflin, who plays Philip, a missionary aboard the Queen Anne's Revenge (not by choice, as Angelica saved his life). Philip preaches how souls can be saved, and in doing so, hopes to deter Blackbeard from doing evil. A fool's pursuit, no doubt. But things change when they capture a mermaid, Syrena (Astrid Berges-Frisbey), and Philip kind of falls in love with her. It's quite a sweet story, and Philip does take his shirt off, revealing that missionaries have got it going on (at least sometimes). But it's still no replacement for the awesomeness of Will Turner. For one, I don't think you ever see Philip pick up a sword. And what good is a hot guy in a pirate movie if he can't fence?
This movie made me wonder if Johnny Depp is ever going to grow tired of playing Jack Sparrow. Remember how in the first Pirates, he was nominated for an Oscar? Crazy!
So on the CWeave scale, I give this movie a 7. It's fun and full of dirty pirates. It may not have the best story line, but you can't ask for more in a summer movie than allowing it to take you away from your own life for a few hours. And that's what this film does.