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A Ranking of the 'Pirates of the Caribbean' Films

    by Conner Tighe When Johnny Depp made his way to Port Royal, Jamaica on a sinking boat, the world was introduced to a character like no other; part of this because of Depp’s superior acting skills and the storyline that would follow. Captain Jack Sparrow is one of the few pirates who’d run away from a fight, unlike most pirates, and would rather spend his time in a pub. The series, temporarily ending in 2017, has had its highs and lows with plot and overall decentness. Here we look at where the beloved series sank and floated its way throughout the years.

5. Pirates of the Caribbean: On Stranger Tides

The pirate series didn’t hold up after Gore Verbinski stepped out as director after At World’s End. When Sparrow reunites with past love Angelica, daughter of evil Captain Blackbeard/Edward Teach(Ian McShane), Sparrow finds himself on a mission to find the fountain of youth. The film tried to introduce new elements, like man-eating mermaids and a strange love story between a mermaid and a pacifist. The two didn’t sit right with the plot and seemed “thrown in” to make the film more enjoyable, which didn’t work. Although not as well done as past films, the fight scenes were decent, and surprisingly the best scene comes from the beginning of the film, where Sparrow finds himself trapped in King George II’s palace. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=KR_9A-cUEJc

4. Pirates of the Caribbean: Dead Men Tell No Tales

This film is the definition of a “cash grab”. Sparrow’s adventures continue by introducing new characters, obviously trying to set up a new generation of characters. When Turner and Swann’s son Henry ventures to free his father from the Flying Dutchman curse, he comes across Barbossa’s daughter Carina. She is considered a witch during this time as she’s obsessed with science and astronomy. Sparrow is as goofy and silly as ever in this film, and although Javier Bardem’s Captain Armando Salazar was an excellent villain, it all feels so tired at this point. The group searches to find Poseidon’s trident as it will reverse all curses, thus freeing Henry’s father. In a post-credit scene, Turner has a nightmare about Davy Jones, a tentacle wearing horror of a character incapable of death, who appeared in films two and three having returned after the curse was lifted. However, wouldn’t the curse have made Jones human again? This is how you know it’s getting ridiculous at this point. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Hgeu5rhoxxY

3. Pirates of the Caribbean: The Curse of the Black Pearl

Out of all films, the original still holds up as the highest-rated film. Viewers are introduced to the original characters when young Swann finds Turner floating among the wreckage of a ship that had been destroyed prior. Their love is forbidden and secretive as she discovers Turner is a pirate. When Barbossa’s crew captures her, the film begins to pick up speed. The film has some mediocre sword fights, including Sparrow and Barbossa in Isla De Muerta, an island where roughly 75% of the film is shown. My favorite part of the film is when Swann and Sparrow are marooned on an island with nothing but a pistol with a single shot. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=naQr0uTrH_s

2. Pirates of the Caribbean: Dead Man’s Chest

The story of Sparrow continues when a curse haunts him throughout the film. Sparrow develops what’s called “the black spot” on his hand, as his debt is overdue to the fearsome Jones. Bill Nighy joined the cast as Jones and did a fantastic job with reprising his role in At World’s End. Although much of the film was exposition and background information on Jones’ character as well as Bootstrap Bill, Turner’s long-lost father found aboard Jones’ Flying Dutchman, the film overall delivered excellently. The film's highlight includes a “three-way” swordfight between Sparrow, Turner, and Norrington, who returns as a lowlife drunk trying to reclaim his honor. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ozk0-RHXtFw

1. Pirates of the Caribbean: At World’s End

At the time, in 2007, the series’  third film was the most expensive film made. At World’s End was the final film in the series to be directed by Verbinski. The nearly three-hour film follows Dead Man’s Chest's events with Swann, Turner, and Barbossa traveling the high seas to rescue Sparrow from Jones’ Locker. The film delivered amazingly, with its visuals, sea battles, and overall plot being the best of all five films. The maelstrom battle at the end is the best battle of all the films and provides humor and seriousness well to solidify the, at the time, ending to the trilogy. Unfortunately, the esteemed series continued for monetary reasons. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_54IUIv97nI
Sources: IMDB, YouTube Images: YouTube Featured Image: Polygon