Pirates of the Caribbean: Dead Man's Chest

Pirates of the Caribbean: Dead Man's Chest ★★★★½

Who would have guessed that the person in the Pirates credits that who would eventually come to mean the most to me would be … Mackenzie Crook?

But it’s true. In recent years, I have watched the TV series Detectorists again and again, delighted and moved by Crook’s extraordinary talents as a writer, director, and actor. He’s given us one of the most human television series I’ve ever seen. Detectorists is poetic, quietly funny, and full of perfectly cast actors crafting unforgettable characters.

Before that, I only knew him as “the skinny guy with the big eyes” from Gore Verbinski’s adventures at sea. And I quit paying attention to the Pirates movies after the third one which, overcrowded and overstocked with cargo, sank like a ship in a storm.

I was sad to see this franchise, which had a strong start and an even stronger second episode, go to pieces. I still think this second episode, Dead Man’s Chest, is one of the most wildly entertaining adventure movies ever made, and an exhibition of brilliant fantasy world-building, drawing in a state of mad inspiration from Buster Keaton, Errol Flynn, George Lucas, and Steven Spielberg. It's just one of the most extravagantly satisfying summer movies of all time.

And now I wonder if it could've have been better if they'd given Crook a stronger part.

Here's my original review.

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