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Pirates of the Caribbean On Stranger Tides - (2D) Blu-ray

post #1 of 62
Thread Starter 
For some reason, the original thread in this forum about this release is locked, so.........

Watched this one on Blu-ray over the weekend. Somewhat disappointed in the movie (I liked all three of the trilogy) but actually was expecting worse considering the mediocre word-of-mouth this one got during it's theatrical run (despite the massive Box Office success).

Long story short, the story is basically Jack Sparrow, his ex-girlfriend and Blackbeard, old friend/foe Captain Barbossa and a crew of Spaniards on behalf of their King all racing to find the Fountain of Youth for various personal reasons. The film misses the direction of Gore Verbinski as well as the stronger characters for the Trilogy. It's basically what you'd expect from a late entry franchise picture starting to sag under it's well-worn plot devices. Depp is curiously more restrained in this film than in anything from the first three movies which is a shame. Ian McShane as Blackbeard makes an entrance almost identical to Davy Jones in the 2nd film but with far less of an inpact and his character never seems to have the same gravity in this film. A lot of character motivation is somewhat muddled through the movie and I really wish the lead Spaniard (I don't recall him even being named) got some more screen time. Even Keith Richard's little cameo makes no sense. I almost had the impression he was a figment of Jack's imagination. The soundtrack score worked best when it recycled familiar themes from the previous movies.

Still, there's much to recommend at least a single viewing. The photography is excellent, especially in well lit scenes. The audio is top-notch and the Blu-ray mostly presents the movie perfectly although in some poorly lit scenes, it looks a bit soft. I image this movie would be one of the better looking titles in it's 3D Blu-ray release.

T.B.
post #2 of 62
Disappointment of the year for me. This was the first Pirates film that actually made be bored as I kept looking at my watch to see how much longer I had to sit there. Having most of the film shot at night didn't help anything either.
post #3 of 62
I'm planning to rent it to give another go to see if I like it at least a little better but I'd be surprised if even so I would purchase it. And since I did purchase the other ones individually, it would still make no difference to me to skip this last one.

The trailer was playing at a local BB store the other day. I glanced at it but that was about it.
post #4 of 62
I found it strange to see such a detailed image without any grain, but that's the power of the RED cameras I suppose. Film's a bit shite, mind.
post #5 of 62
(I posted much of these same comments in a follow-up to the review of the 3D version, when somebody asked about the 2D version, but this thread seems more appropriate.)

Both my wife and I were seriously disappointed. We felt that neither the storyline, the acting nor the scenery and effects were on par with the first PotC movies.

If they do a 5th one, we'll probably rent, rather than buy. Then maybe wait for it to hit the $5 bin, if we like it even that much.

In addition to that: On our system the menuing system was broken, with sub-menu selections appearing up in the upper-left corner of the screen, either mostly, or nearly entirely off the screen.

The navigation during play is annoying, as well. When you press any of pause, play, FF, REW, etc., a temporary "status" display pops-up at the bottom of the screen and lingers for a few seconds. So if you're watching with subtitles, which my wife and I do nearly all the time, now, thanks to poor enunciation by actors and poor dialogue sound mixing by the studios, you have to back up far more than you'd do otherwise, to give that annoying display time to time out and go away.

Since we own it, we'll probably watch it again, but we'll probably watch the DVD.

Our recommendation: Rent, maybe. And the DVD, at that. Do not buy.

Jim
post #6 of 62
Thank god it wasn't just me. Ridiculously boring as hell, and I hate it when the movie is so bad you fall asleep even though you're not even sleepy. What is so hard about making a pirates film...there's so many option to make it fun or adventurous, instead they just talk way too much about nothing when they should be swash bucking or whatever pirates do...like the 1st one.
post #7 of 62
I don't know, I thought it was a decent entry. I know Disney wanted a lower budget for the movie and that affected things a bit but really, it wasn't any worse than the balls to the wall 3rd movie. That movie had almost too much going on to be honest. I think that this film not being part of the original trilogy hurt it for a lot of people as they got used to seeing Will and Elizabeth. I didn't care though I enjoy the Sparrow universe. The BD looked and sounded like I thought it would as well. All in all a worthy buy for me.
post #8 of 62
Yeah, I wasn't too happy with this film, either. Given the nature of the first three films, I was expecting a much bigger story, worth of the series' title. Instead, we get a semi-interesting love/hate relationship between Jack and Angelica, a muddled set of characters with very little explanation (here's to you, Spaniard leader), and a very poor result, from what could've been the best in the franchise. At this point, I'm not even sure I'll bother with the Blu-Ray...especially since a standalone 2D version wasn't even bothered with.
post #9 of 62
Quote:
Originally Posted by pcweber111 View Post

I think that this film not being part of the original trilogy hurt it for a lot of people as they got used to seeing Will and Elizabeth.

Actually, I was alright with that, since their story was wrapped up rather neatly in the last movie. BUt I think they should have worked harder to get more of the minor characters besides Gibbs back... Pintel, Ragetti et al would have tied the franchise together and made it feel more like a "Pirates" movie.

I also was somewhat disappointed with Ian McShane's performance... was really looking forward to it, but I felt it fell kind of flat. Weakest bad-guy yet in the franchise, IMO.
post #10 of 62
Quote:
Originally Posted by thebard View Post

...I think they should have worked harder to get more of the minor characters besides Gibbs back... Pintel, Ragetti et al would have tied the franchise together and made it feel more like a "Pirates" movie.

Mackenzie Crook (Ragetti) was asked to return, and declined, saying he wanted to spend more time with his family.
post #11 of 62
I thought he said that he wasn't asked, but he was glad anyway because he could spend time with his family etc.
post #12 of 62
It was shot with RED cameras and the Cameron co-developed 3D rig. However, the movie is mostly too darkly lit to allow for good 3D depth.

If you liked the movie, the 2D version was the set to get. The 3D disc isn't worth the extra $$.

That said... they really should have just stuck with the first film. It was kinda fun, though even it had a few rough spots. But due to its success, Disney couldn't resist milking it to death.

The part of the film that seemed to have some real potential, compared to the messy, incoherent main plot, was the sorely underdeveloped subplot of the Missionary and the Mermaid.

Sad, because it was meant to be the very heart of the story... while everyone else was there to use the fountain for selfish gain, plunder, and revenge... the "evil" mermaid and the "naive, goody-two-shoes" sailor had the very best of intentions and were able to look past their supposed enmity.

They could have fleshed both those characters out a bit more... and the mermaid civilization for that matter. They could have been more than just hot-looking, vampire-like great white sharks, but alas they were just the next monster-du-jour of the POTC franchise.

From my point of view, it might have been interesting if they hinted more to the fact that all of these feared mermaids from sailors' darkest tales turned out to be only as evil and savage as the sailors they encountered... kind of like empathic creatures. They mirrored whatever was lurking in your soul. If you were selfish and cruel... they turned into blood thirsty monsters. On the other hand, if you were just the opposite...

The story of Jack Sparrow, Blackbeard, his daughter, and Barbossa seemed paper thin and slap-dashed together, and was kind of boring. That too needed a lot of work.

But I guess I can't expect a lot out of a Terry Rossio / Ted Elliot for-hire script. They're very paint-by-numbers writers. Though, they are definitely a step above Ehren Kruger of Transformers 3 infamy. But that's damning with faint praise.
post #13 of 62
Quote:
Originally Posted by Dan Hitchman View Post

It was shot with RED cameras and the Cameron co-developed 3D rig. However, the movie is mostly too darkly lit to allow for good 3D depth.

If you liked the movie, the 2D version was the set to get. The 3D disc isn't worth the extra $$.

That said... they really should have just stuck with the first film. It was kinda fun, though even it had a few rough spots. But due to its success, Disney couldn't resist milking it to death.

The part of the film that seemed to have some real potential, compared to the messy, incoherent main plot, was the sorely underdeveloped subplot of the Missionary and the Mermaid.

Sad, because it was meant to be the very heart of the story... while everyone else was there to use the fountain for selfish gain, plunder, and revenge... the "evil" mermaid and the "naive, goody-two-shoes" sailor had the very best of intentions and were able to look past their supposed enmity.

They could have fleshed both those characters out a bit more... and the mermaid civilization for that matter. They could have been more than just hot-looking, vampire-like great white sharks, but alas they were just the next monster-du-jour of the POTC franchise.

From my point of view, it might have been interesting if they hinted more to the fact that all of these feared mermaids from sailors' darkest tales turned out to be only as evil and savage as the sailors they encountered... kind of like empathic creatures. They mirrored whatever was lurking in your soul. If you were selfish and cruel... they turned into blood thirsty monsters. On the other hand, if you were just the opposite...

The story of Jack Sparrow, Blackbeard, his daughter, and Barbossa seemed paper thin and slap-dashed together, and was kind of boring. That too needed a lot of work.

But I guess I can't expect a lot out of a Terry Rossio / Ted Elliot for-hire script. They're very paint-by-numbers writers. Though, they are definitely a step above Ehren Kruger of Transformers 3 infamy. But that's damning with faint praise.

On the other hand, it was a good "popcorn flick". Pretty much the same as the previous three but still fun to watch. YMMV.



Mark
post #14 of 62
Not any better or worse than the previous 3 films.
I agree that the majority of the movie was darkly lit.

I believe some people may have had expectations of crakens, sea monsters and pirates ghouls but they never materialized.

Decent popcorn film/story.
post #15 of 62
Quote:
Originally Posted by zoey67 View Post

Thank god it wasn't just me. Ridiculously boring as hell, and I hate it when the movie is so bad you fall asleep even though you're not even sleepy.

I'm going to have to agree. Went to see it only because I had a theatre gift certificate that was about to expire and there wasn't really anything interesting showing. In hindsight a mistake because anything else would probably have been better than Pirates 4. Couldn't remember when a movie last bored me as much, and I just wanted it to end.

I thought it was particularly ugly as well, and though the lighting and showing I went to were probably the biggest culprits (heck, the first 10 minutes were in 1.85:1 before a projectionist realised and stopped the film) I'm going to give the RED some blame as well because I hate it.
post #16 of 62
Quote:
Originally Posted by paku View Post

I'm going to have to agree. Went to see it only because I had a theatre gift certificate that was about to expire and there wasn't really anything interesting showing. In hindsight a mistake because anything else would probably have been better than Pirates 4. Couldn't remember when a movie last bored me as much, and I just wanted it to end.

I thought it was particularly ugly as well, and though the lighting and showing I went to were probably the biggest culprits (heck, the first 10 minutes were in 1.85:1 before a projectionist realised and stopped the film) I'm going to give the RED some blame as well because I hate it.

I was very disappointed with the film, but I wouldn't go so far as to say I hate it. The main thing that's keeping me from buying it on Blu-Ray is Disney's obsession with combo packs, even moving most of the extras to the 3D set. I couldn't care less about 3D, so I'll be waiting for the eventual 2-disc Blu release, like the original three films were first given.
post #17 of 62
Stranger tides was the worst of the 4. Sparrow doesnt work as the lead character, some of his edge gets lost. In the first 3 we didnt really know whats side he was on (and neither did he).

The rest of the characters didnt get the much needed screentime to develop their characters.

I actually likes the third movie alot more since I saw the fourth one.
post #18 of 62
Huh....on my screen the vast majority of scenes appeared reference quality.

post #19 of 62
Quote:
Originally Posted by Jive Turkey View Post

Huh....on my screen the vast majority of scenes appeared reference quality.


Because you two have different take on what in an image make reference quality.

Sharpness, contrast, colors, dynamic range etc. What make an image reference?
post #20 of 62
Quote:
Originally Posted by CountDeleteo View Post

Visually the film was just SO boring, dull, lifeless, flat, etc. I hate digital photography, it has no life or texture.

Film wouldn't have helped this movie one bit. The cinematography sucked, period.
post #21 of 62
Quote:
Originally Posted by Osirus23 View Post

Film wouldn't have helped this movie one bit. The cinematography sucked, period.

Cinematography wouldn't have helped this movie one bit, the script sucked, period.
post #22 of 62
Tough crowd!
post #23 of 62
The audio was flat and dull too. Forgettable. I love the first, and tolerated the 2nd and 3rd but this franchise is dead to me now. Johnny Depp still pulls off Jack Sparrow like no other can but it's getting tired now. I feel like the character wasn't written to its potential. Everybody else mailed in their performances. The overall plot had a lot going for it so I was pumped at first but it just fell flat on its face. I cared about no one, except for the sweet looking mermaid but that's about it. Why is Cruz even in this one? Her character served no purpose, other than making the overall story bigger and putting men in the seats.
post #24 of 62
Quote:
Originally Posted by MovieSwede View Post

Cinematography wouldn't have helped this movie one bit, the script sucked, period.

True enough.
post #25 of 62
Quote:
Originally Posted by Bing View Post

Why is Cruz even in this one? Her character served no purpose, other than making the overall story bigger and putting men in the seats.

What was Keira Knightley's character exact purpose then, besides making the overall story bigger and putting men in the seats?
post #26 of 62
I liked it a little bit better versus the first time I saw it but I am in no hurry to buy it to tell the truth. I didn't indulge in any popcorn this time either (too expensive in my opinion at my local theaters to even consider usually when I go and it makes me thirsty anyway adding more to the cost) but I can see myself maybe doing so sometime in the future with this movie at home.

I've said I wouldn't buy some other movies before BUT there seems no end to BV stores offering previewed movies 5 for $20 after awhile!
post #27 of 62
Quote:
Originally Posted by robertc88 View Post

I liked it a little bit better versus the first time I saw it but I am in no hurry to buy it to tell the truth. I didn't indulge in any popcorn this time either (too expensive in my opinion at my local theaters to even consider usually when I go and it makes me thirsty anyway adding more to the cost) but I can see myself maybe doing so sometime in the future with this movie at home.

I've said I wouldn't buy some other movies before BUT there seems no end to BV stores offering previewed movies 5 for $20 after awhile!

Yeah, I'l pick this up when the price gets reasonable....as a Completist, I have to.
post #28 of 62
Quote:
Originally Posted by Morpheo View Post

What was Keira Knightley's character exact purpose then, besides making the overall story bigger and putting men in the seats?

Elisabeth Swan IS the main character of the first three pirates movies (Jack Sparrow, while central to the story, is not the main character). She has a well-defined character arc that shows her rejecting the confining society life expected of her for the adventure and freedom of the pirate life. She has three suitors to choose from (Will, Jack and Norrington), each one representing a particular kind of life to pursue. By the end of the trilogy she's become a Pirate Queen who is directly responsible for deciding the future fate of all pirates. She also puts men in the seats.

That's a rather large purpose.

Cruz, on the other hand, is great to look at but barely has a purpose or a story arc beyond being a romatic foil for Jack. That said, I did enjoy her presence in the movie. (And yeah, I did see the wink in your reply.)
post #29 of 62
Quote:
Originally Posted by Morpheo View Post

What was Keira Knightley's character exact purpose then, besides making the overall story bigger and putting men in the seats?

True enough. But I accept it because it's part of the original story. Cruz's character seem like it was conveniently made up to have another female lead to replace Keira. It's a cheap explanation. I don't remember in the three previous films alluding to the existence of a long lost love that Jack still has feelings for, or him wanting closure, or even if she stole something of value that he wants back, or whatever......(I could be wrong)

There is no value in the character when it was so easily drawn up.
post #30 of 62
As I said above... the mermaid was one of the coolest characters of the bunch and they barely utilized that character to her fullest potential.

When even Jack Sparrow is upstaged by a fragile, beautifully ethereal mermaid... that tells you something right there about the script.
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