The adventures of Captain Jack Sparrow in the Pirates of the Caribbean
movies have given Disney their biggest hits of the decade. And while neither of the two sequels have come close to matching the first, there’s plenty for the family to enjoy across the trilogy of films here.
The first film is a belter. Pirates of the Caribbean: Curse Of The Black Pearl introduces us to Sparrow for the first time (earning Johnny Depp an Oscar nomination in the process), as well as the talented cast of supporting characters. The fun though, is when either Depp or Geoffrey Rush as Captain Barbossa are on the screen. Throw in lots of witty banter, some superb action sequences and a running time that doesn’t outstay its welcome, and you have a modern day blockbuster classic.
The sequels are far flabbier. Pirates of the Caribbean: Dead Man’s Chest does boast some outstanding effects work, and does introduce Bill Nighy as Davy Jones, but it also meanders around a lot, and tests the patience of its audience more than it should. Not as much as Pirates of the Caribbean: At World’s End though, which does compensate by having the best high definition transfer of the lot, and a stunning battle sequence near the end, but does ask that you stick with it through choppy waters.
With a fourth Pirates of the Caribbean movie setting sail in the summer of 2011 though, it’s going to be a joy to see the further adventure of Depp’s simply superb Captain Jack. And if you want to enjoy his work to date on the franchise, and enjoy one of the best blockbuster movies of the last decade, then this is a very good box set to get. It’s a terrific high definition treat, too --Simon Brew
The first three movies from the hugely popular 'Pirates of the Caribbean' series. In 'The Curse of the Black Pearl' (2003), when Elizabeth (Keira Knightley), the daughter of Governor Swann (Jonathan Pryce), is kidnapped by Captain Barbarossa (Geoffrey Rush) and his band of pirates, love-lorn Will Turner (Orlando Bloom) goes to her rescue. However, he needs help to get on board the pirates' ship, The Black Pearl, and enlists ship captain Jack Sparrow (Johnny Depp). But they are up against more than just sword-swinging pirates; the crew of the Black Pearl are cursed to spend their time between the living and the dead and only the blood of Elizabeth can break the curse. Will and Sparrow have therefore to overcome the undeadly crew and rescue the governor's daughter and this culminates in a special-effects-laden sword fight between Sparrow and Barbarossa. In 'Dead Man's Chest' (2006), once again thrown into the world of the supernatural, Jack (Depp) finds out that he owes a blood debt to the legendary Davy Jones (Bill Nighy), Captain of the ghostly Flying Dutchman. With time running out, Jack must find a way out of his debt or else be doomed to eternal damnation and servitude in the afterlife. But Jack will not give in without a fight, which is especially bad news for Will Turner (Bloom) and Elizabeth Swann (Knightley), who always seem to get caught up in Jack's mishaps. If Jack can't find a way to rid himself of Davy Jones once and for all, it may just spell the end for the three adventurers. In 'At World's End' (2007) after Elizabeth (Knightley), Will (Bloom), and Captain Barbossa (Rush) rescue Captain Jack Sparrow (Depp) from the the land of the dead, they must face their foes, Davy Jones (Nighy) and Lord Cutler Beckett (Tom Hollander). Beckett, now with control of Jones' heart, forms a dark alliance with him in order to rule the seas and wipe out the last of the Pirates. Now, Jack, Barbossa, Will, Elizabeth, Tia Dalma (Naomie Harris) and crew must call the Pirate Lords from the four corners of the globe, including the infamous Sao Feng (Yun-Fat Chow) together to make one final stand for freedom.