Saturday, July 22, 2006

Yo ho ho and a bottle of arse

So here is the story of my trip to see Dead Man's Chest. I mentioned earlier how it was a balls up from start to finish. And so it was. I hope you're sitting comfortably, because I'm about to begin.

Ok, so in the UK there's this thing called Orange Wednesdays. If your cell phone is on the Orange network, on a Wednesday you text them and they send you a text back that gets you two cinema tickets for the price of one. My housemate and I decided to go see Dead Man's Chest at the 3:30pm showing. We left the house at 2:40pm, I sent the text as we left. And the response never came. We got on the bus to the cinema. It's not air conditioned so it's about 120 degrees on the bus. And it's full of school children. Packed with them. They're so loud! It's like being trapped in a tumble drier with hyenas. The bus then hits every single red light between our flat and the centre of town. We get off and walk through the Lanes to cool off and escape the school children. We debate whether to get Banana Caramel Frappuccinos or ice cream at the cinema. We opt for ice cream. Should have known better.

We get to the cinema with what we thought was enough time to get the tickets and get ice cream. There is one person serving and a line right out the door. We finally make it into the cinema as the last trailer is finishing. One of my most favorite things about going to the cinema is watching the trailers. So now I'm pissed. The cinema is busy, there's a high percentage of irritating and loud people here. One girl, far too near to me for her own safety, is having an argument with her mother on her cell phone as her mother wants to pick her up before the film will finish. I fight the urge to lean over and say "I really think it's best if you just leave now". Having missed the trailers, there's then a 10 minute delay before the film starts for no apparent reason, other than to annoy me I think. It's during this 10 minutes when I notice that it's way too warm in the auditorium. Yup. I'm about to sit through a 150 minute movie in a non air conditioned movie theatre. Sweet mother of God.

So you can see how I wouldn't have been in the best frame of mind to be visually assaulted by the monstrosity that was Dead Man's Chest. Part of the problem is that I came very late to the Pirates Of The Caribbean table first time around. I had no overwhelming desire to see it, not being a fan of Keira Knightley or Orlando Bloom. But everyone I knew who saw it raved about how fabulous it was. So towards the end of its cinema run in 2003, I finally caved in and saw it. And, Johnny Depp aside, was bored out of my mind by it. So I don't really know why I bothered taking in the sequel. I knew I wouldn't enjoy it. But there's always a chance I might, ya know? Anyway, I never dreamed it would be quite as shockingly inept and deathly boring as it was.

It was as if they sat around after the first one took the world by storm and said "well now we have to make a sequel or two. What went right this time? it seems they liked that rum joke. And everyone's loving Johnny Depp's performance. And our special effects are killer" and that was as creative as they got. As someone who didn't find the rum joke funny first time around, I didn't need it repeated endlessly throughout the sequel. The special effects were amazing, yes, but I'd trade them in for some decent direction and a halfway coherent story. Instead they cobbled together some bollocks about Davy Jones and hoped for the best.

In addition to the main nonsensical and unclear plot about Davy Jones and the eponyomous chest, they foolishly try and fashion a love quadrangle (or pentangle, depending on what they were going for with Tom Hollander's brief appearance). Now, that would be fine if it were someone remotely attractive causing said quadrangle. However, having one man lusting after that scrawny bitch Keira Knightley is stretching it pretty far, that there could be three (or four) is plain insanity. Every time I looked at her I just thought "Jesus Christ, eat something! How are you holding a sword? Hell, how are you even standing up?" and apparently her calorie intake is linked to her acting ability because she has never been more wooden than she was here. Orlando Bloom just can't act, never has been able to. He has an air of 40's matinee idol about him but alas he's got all the talent of Keanu Reeves. The real surprise here is Depp, turning in an ugly and lazy performance, a smudged photocopy of his first crack at Jack.

The script has precisely two lines that might raise a laugh. However, both of those are in the trailer and therefore they aren't funny in the movie because you've heard them before like 800 times. The rest is trying far far too hard and goes for icky ICKY slapstick to raise a laugh rather than sharp one liners. A film that could have been shorn of several supporting players and at LEAST 45 minutes, it's so in love with itself and thinks it's so much fun, but that sense of fun never reaches the audience and in the end this bloated monstrosity just sits there like an unflushable turd.

I'm off now to a press screening of the Almodovar movie, Volver. I'll write about that, the rest of my week, London and Superman Returns later on.


dicky greenleaf said...

You haven't mentioned anything of the beauty that is Jack Davenport

Popcultureboy said...

Indeed I haven't. For he is beautiful. Sadly for 99% of his screen time he's buried under layers of grime and a bad haircut. Shame.

Eric said...

Jack had my favorite Brit accent ever when he was on Coupling.

dirk.mancuso said...

Great review. Couldn't have said it better myself.

And thank God I am not the only one NOT smitten with Orlando Bloom. He's really not that pretty.

Popcultureboy said...

He's not exactly ugly either, but he has zero talent or personality to back his looks up with and that really doesn't help.