Kalauer der piratischen Moderne

In Einigkeit badeten Kritiker bislang kaum bis gar nicht. Mit dem neusten, unlängst gehofft letztem (Verhandlungen zu Teil 4 stehen in den Startlöchern), „Fluch der Karibik – Pirates of the Caribbean – Am Ende der Welt“ (offizieller Titel, wo bitteschön?) reiten sie aber alle in Vollkommenheit auf einer derzeit populären Wolke, die dem Sommer nicht schadet, nur den Filmherzen. Bereits zerrissen (mehr oder minder gleicht nicht total) räkelt „Spider-Man 3“ erfolgreich in den Wogen der kauzigen Kinobetreiber, die sich vor Besuchern nicht mehr retten können, den Einfall ebenfalls unsinnig finden könnten, schwimmte die Masche der armseligen Dauerarbeiter seither durch. Sie verdienen endlich, Multiplexe demnach unendlich mehr, als die kleinen Spielkasernen (jene trumpfen in „2 Tage Paris“, „Black Book“), aber jedenfalls, sie alle verdienen. Das Geld mag im Übrigen so hoch klingen, wie seit dem Anbeginn der Leinwand nicht mehr, der Kinopolis-Sommer, der mit so manch einer Karte selbst Unbeteiligter endet, führt gerade in dieser Höhepunktreichen Zeit zur Enttäuschung, dem Missvergnügen gegenüber jedem bombastischen Hexenkessel, der des Weges gerannt kommt.

Die Fährte erspürt hatte beizeiten die Flucht in karibische Gewässer, der Piratenschatz „Fluch der Karibik“. Angesetzt auf alles und sehr wenig profilierte sich Jerry Bruckheimers Wasserausflug von seinen angetrunkenen Freunden, hochherzig dem Depp, schmiss mit Seegarn nur so um sich. Unerwartet kam Hollywood mit Kohle angeschneit, Geld das ein altmodisches Flagschiff überraschend verschifft hatte. Punktiert gaben sie alle die Prophezeiung auf nochmalig grüne Scheine anzulegen und erstanden Teil zwei und drei des (damalig) erfrischenden Abenteuers. Ein Zeitpunkt, der verfiel, durch die Fülle an überheblichen Fortsetzungen immer weiter auf dem Meeresgrund verschwand. Hoffnungsweise bemüht sich nun alle Welt, das Ende der Welt mit anderen Augen zu sehen und positive Reaktionen abzuliefern. Sie werden vielleicht kommen, aber stattlich von Fans, das anspruchsvollere Kaliber der Tageszeitungen, der perversen Vermieser, denen Blockbuster weder in Herz noch Unterhaltung eingehen (Soralys Wenigkeit spaßenshalber), halbieren die zauberhaften CGI-Welten.

Im Endeffekt zählt für einige wenige Kritiker ein Grundsatz, der vom genesenden Roger Ebert in Stein gemeiselt wurde: “When I am asked, all to frequently, if I really sit all the way through these movies, my answer is inevitably: Yes, because I want to write the review.” Der Weg ins Kino steht, weht an, in den gigantomanischen Saal. Leider nicht zur Freude:

  • Rolling Stone
    „The good news first: Keith Richards totally rocks it playing pirate daddy to Johnny Depp’s Capt. Jack Sparrow. So what’s the bad news? Richards is onscreen for barely two minutes. The rest of At World’s End left me at wit’s end wading through nearly three hours of punishing exposition, endless blather (pirates take meetings – who knew?), an overload of digital effects and shameless setups for Pirates 4. I applaud the Oscar nomination Depp received for the first Pirates, but the third chapter proves that there can indeed be too much of a good thing. Pirates 3 raises everything from the dead, except inspiration. Know what? There really is no legit way to review Pirates 3. It’s not a movie at all, it’s a business proposition.“

  • Variety
    „The third voyage in the „Pirates“ trilogy could be touted as „the biggest, loudest and second-best (or second-worst) ‘Pirates’ ever!“ – not necessarily a ringing endorsement, but honest. In a sense, the two „Pirates“ sequels feel less like movies than a shared event – much like a concert where the audience sits patiently through lesser known numbers to hear the band belt out favorite tunes. For the most part, those big themes and even the fundamental rules are easily obscured by the cacophony of relentless, state-of-the-art special effects and Hans Zimmer’s equally unremitting score, which at times overwhelms the dialogue. Indeed, repetitive action from multiple cannon-firing battles to ship-sucking vortexes yield diminishing returns; the pic’s greatest virtue is its sense of whimsy, whether that involves multiple Depps debating himself or the crew’s slapstick antics, which wring considerable mileage out of that monkey and parrot.“

  • Empire
    „But if you can just let the story wash past you, and stop trying to catch the expositionary dialogue as it flits past in a variety of syrupy brogues (not helped by the over-loud sound mix), there is still some fun to be had. It’s also undeniably impressive visually. A few of the sequences are gasp-out-loud gorgeous, there’s a beautifully shot finale for one villain and the effects are well-nigh flawless, with almost every scene up to the same quality as Davy Jones’ breathtakingly good execution. So is this the end for Pirates? Well, the climax of this film frankly has ‘sequel bait’ written all over it, and although the traditional post-credits coda somewhat suggests that it’s an actual finish, expect Pirates 4 to be announced the moment that the opening weekend figures come back in. Let’s just hope that next time they keep things simple.“

  • Reelviews
    „When it comes to the final hour, Pirates of the Caribbean: At World’s End, delivers the goods. The last 60 minutes offer adventure as rousing as anything provided in either of the previous instalments, Pirates of the Caribbean: Curse of the Black Pearl and Pirates of the Caribbean: Dead Man’s Chest. Unfortunately, that doesn’t account for the other 108 minutes of this gorged, self-indulgent, and uneven production. During the course of nearly two hours of exposition and setup, there’s little in the way of charm or action. There are memorable moments, to be sure, but the overwhelming sense is that the film is desperately spinning its wheels trying to shock and awe with unexpected plot developments.“

  • Philadelphia Weekly
    „A lumbering, elephantine spectacle that looks like it cost more than the entire gross national product of a developing nation, Pirates of the Caribbean: At World’s End stomps into theatres this weekend with an air of inevitability. Given the success of the previous two pictures, record-breaking grosses and profitable merchandise tie-ins are already a foregone conclusion. It’s almost beside the point to ask if the movie’s any good. It isn’t, by the way. Visually astonishing, yet also pointlessly convoluted and at least an hour too long, the 168-minute Pirates is an exhausting experience – such a tangled thicket of overwritten, labyrinthine, made-up mythology, backstabbing betrayals and mixed motivations that a massive chunk of the running time is devoted to characters standing around on boats, trying like hell to explain the plot to one another.“

  • Pop Syndicate
    „Let’s employ set pieces and stunts that would make a latter-era Pierce Brosnan 007 movie blush. And, for the hell of it, let’s have a little homage to Attack of the 50 Foot Woman. Before long, the sequels don’t sound anything like what made the first work so well. At World’s End is a damn sight better than Dead Man’s Chest, that numbingly messy second entry, but still manages to be only about half as charming as the first while seeming to contain 50% more blubber. At World’s End plays like competent fan fiction. It’s indulgent, imaginative in a half-bright way, a little too in love with its main character and fascinated by special effects and set pieces that must seem grandiose to its creators but only come off like so much CGI noise to the audience. There are worse ways to spend 168 minutes of your time, but much better ones, too. Might I recommend seeing 28 Weeks Later twice?“

  • Village Voice
    „As for everyone else: The punishing runtime could easily and harmlessly have been abbreviated by removing witless Will Turner, whose sub-Shakespearean psychodrama with his cursed, crustaceous father (Stellan Skarsgard) is representative of the film’s mind-numbing, indulgent exposition. Of all movies, this is the last you’d expect to talk and talk and talk and talk, but on it goes, everybody yapping about what they just did, what they’re about to do, what they should be doing, what it will mean if they do X instead of Y. Dude, just fucking do it.“

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