Pirates of the Caribbean
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Pirates of the Caribbean 101
» Spoiler Warning: details on this page could spoil any surprise(s) in the story if you have not seen these movies.
Pirates of the Caribbean is a sweeping action-adventure story set in an era when villainous pirates scavenged the Caribbean seas. This roller coaster tale teams a young man, Will Turner, with an unlikely ally in rogue pirate Jack Sparrow. Together, they must battle a band of the world's most treacherous pirates, led by the cursed Captain Barbossa, in order to save Elizabeth, the love of Will's life, as well as recover the lost treasure that Jack seeks.
Pirates of the Caribbean: Recap and Review
What makes it so notable? The first movie is a great new take on the old pirate films, with action, fascinating plot twists, and lots of humor. Plus, Jack Sparrow is arguably one of the best characters in movie history.
What are its weak points? The second and third movies were very dark and completely lacked the appeal of the first.
Verdict: Casual Fan or Big-Time Fangirl? Casual Fan of the first and fourth movies: Avid Disliker of the other two
Comments: I didn't like the second movie, and the third movie was such a disappointment that it actually ruined the series for me for quite a while. Still, I finally remembered all of the things I loved about Curse of the Black Pearl, and I watch it again from time to time. I simply pretend the other two movies were a bad dream.
- Quotes -
The good, the bad, the sad, the funny: the things we wish we'd thought to say first.
[From Curse of the Black Pearl]
[Will draws his sword.]
Jack Sparrow: Put it away, son. It's not worth you getting beat again.
Will Turner: You didn't beat me: you ignored the rules of engagement. In a fair fight, I'd kill you.
Jack Sparrow: That's not much incentive for me to fight fair, then, is it?
Elizabeth: This is the fastest ship in the Caribbean.
Anamaria: You can tell them that after they've caught us.
Norrington: I intend to see to it that any man who sails under a pirate flag or wears a pirate brand gets what he deserves: a short drop and a sudden stop.
Governor Swann: I'm told it's the latest fashion in London.
Elizabeth: Well, women in London must have learned not to breathe.
Pirate: I'm gonna teach you the meaning of pain.
Elizabeth: You like pain? Try wearing a corset.
Barbossa: You best start believing in ghost stories Miss Turner. You're in one.
Jack Sparrow: How far would you go to save this girl?
Will Turner: I would die for her.
Jack Sparrow: Ok. Good. No worries then.¹
Norrington: You are without a doubt the worst pirate I've ever heard of.
Jack Sparrow: Ah, but you have heard of me.
Jack Sparrow: You seem somewhat familiar. Have I threatened you before?
Will Turner: I make a point of avoiding familiarity with pirates.
Will Turner: We're going to steal a ship? That ship?
Jack Sparrow: "Commandeer." We're going to commandeer that ship. Nautical term.
Elizabeth: Whose side is Jack on?
Will Turner: At the moment?
Harbormaster: Hold up there, you. It's a shilling to tie up your boat at the dock. And I shall need to know your name.
Jack Sparrow: What do you say to three shillings... and we forget the name?
Harbormaster: Welcome to Port Royal, Mr. Smith.
Will Turner: This is either madness... or brilliance.
Jack Sparrow: It's remarkable how often those two traits coincide.
Norrington: Mr. Sparrow, you will accompany these fine men to the helm and provide us with the bearing to Isla de Muerta. You will then spend the remainder of the voyage contemplating all possible meanings of the phrase "silent as the grave". Do I make myself clear?
Jack Sparrow: Inescapably.
Elizabeth: I must tell him. The pirates, they cannot be killed.
Lt. Gillette (sarcastically): Don't worry, Miss, he's already informed of that. A little mermaid flopped up on deck and told him the whole story.
Guard #1: What's your purpose in Port Royal, Mr. Smith?
Guard #2: Yeah, and no lies.
Jack Sparrow: Well, then, I confess, it is my intention to commandeer one of these ships, pick up a crew in Tortuga, raid, pillage, plunder and otherwise pilfer my weasely black guts out.
Guard #2: I said no lies.
Guard #1: I think he's telling the truth.
Elizabeth: Pirate or not this man saved my life.
Norrington: One good deed is not enough to redeem a man of a lifetime of wickedness.
Jack Sparrow: Though it seems enough to condemn him.
Jack Sparrow: Now... bring me that horizon.
[From Dead Man's Chest]
Davy Jones: You have a debt to pay. You've been captain of the Black Pearl for thirteen years. That was our agreement.
Jack: Technically, I was only captain for two years, then I was viciously mutinied upon.
Davy Jones: Then you were a poor captain, but a captain nonetheless! Have you not introduced yourself all these years as "Captain Jack Sparrow"?
"I think it's bad luck for the groom to see the bride before the wedding." Elizabeth, to Will who is in irons after being arrested
Will: ...then I'll return here to marry you.
Will: If you'll still have me.
Elizabeth: If it weren't for these bars, I'd have you already.
Gibbs: And what's your story, sailor?
Norrington: My story? My story is the same as yours just one chapter behind. I chased a man across the seven seas. The pursuit cost me my crew, my commission, and my life.
Norrington: No, not anymore! Weren't you listening?!
Norrington: So am I *worthy* to sail under Captain Jack Sparrow? Or should I just kill you now?
Jack: What are you doing here? You look bloody awful.
Norrington: You hired me. I can't help it if your standards are lax.
"I've noticed lately, the Captain seems to be acting a bit strange...er." A pirate, about Jack
Jack (about the letters Beckett signed): Might I enquire as to how you came by these?
Elizabeth: Decidedly not.
Elizabeth: Jack, the letters, give them back.
Jack: No. Persuade me.
Elizabeth: You do know Will taught me how to handle a sword.
Jack: As I said... Persuade me.
Jack: I knew you'd warm up to me eventually.
[Norrington points his sword at Jack]
Norrington: Lord Beckett desires the contents of that chest. I deliver it, I get my life back.
Jack: Ah. The dark side of ambition.
Norrington: Oh, I prefer to see it as the promise of redemption.
Scarlett: Jack Sparrow?
Giselle: Haven't seen him in a month. When you do see him, can you give him a message?
[She slaps Will in the face]
Potential Pirate: I have one arm and a bum leg.
Gibbs: It's the crow's nest for you.
Guard: Mr. Swann...
Governor Swann: *Governor* Swann, still. Do you think I wear this wig to keep my head warm?
Will: I'm to find Jack and convince him to return to Port Royal, and in exchange the charges against us will be dropped.
Governor Swann: No. We must find our own avenue to secure your freedom.
Will: Is that a lack of faith in Jack... or in me?
Will: Elizabeth is in danger.
Jack: Have you considered keeping a more watchful eye on her? Maybe just lock her up somewhere?
Jack: Mr. Gibbs, it seems we have a need to travel upriver.
Gibbs: By "need" do you mean a trifling need, a fleeting need, more of a passing fancy?
Jack: No. I mean a resolute and unyielding need.
Jack: No worries, mates. Tia Dalma and I go *way* back. Thick as thieves. Nigh inseparable we are. Were. Have been. Before.
Tia Dalma: You. You have a touch a' destiny about you. William. Turner.
Will: You know me?
Tia Dalma (leaning closer): You want to know me.
Jack (interrupting): There'll be no knowing here...
Gibbs: Where's the Commodore?
Jack: He fell behind.
Gibbs (solemnly): My prayers be with him.
[He suddenly brightens]
Gibbs: Best not wallow in our grief!
Jack (to Bootstrap Bill): And to what do I owe the pleasure of your carbuncle?
Jack: How did you get here?
Will: Sea turtles, mate. A pair of them strapped to my feet.
Jack: Not so easy, is it?
Will: This... is going to save Elizabeth?
Jack: How much do you know about Davy Jones?
Will: Not much.
Jack: Yeah, it's gonna save Elizabeth.
Jack: Gentlemen, what do keys do?
Pirate: Keys... unlock... *things*?
[Pintel and Ragetti watch Norrington, Will and Jack fight while Elizabeth is screaming and throwing rocks]
Pintel: How'd this go all screwy?
Ragetti: Well, each man wants the chest for hisself, don't 'e? Mr. Norrington, I think, is trying to regain a bit of honor. Old Jack's looking to trade it, to save his own skin. And Turner there, I think 'e's trying to settle some unresolved business twixt him and his twice-cursed pirate father.
Pintel: Sad, isn't it?
Jack (to Elizabeth about Will who's knocked out): Leave 'im lie... unless you're planning to use him to hit somethin' with.
Jack: My compass... is unique.
Norrington: "Unique," here, having the meaning of broken.
Norrington: You actually were telling the truth.
Jack: I do that quite a lot. Yet people are always surprised.
Will: With good reason.
Jack: So how many is that?
Gibbs: Including those four? That brings us to... four.
Elizabeth: I'm here to find the man I love!
[She's dressed as a man, and Jack doesn't recognize her.]
Jack: I'm deeply flattered, lad, but my first and only love is the sea.
Gibbs: Not quite according to plan...
Jack: Complications arose, ensued, were overcome.
Jack: Why not? We are very much alike you and I. I and you. Us.
Elizabeth: Except for a sense of honor and decency and a moral center. And personal hygiene.
[Jack empties bottle of rum]
Jack: Why is the rum always gone?
[He stands up and staggers drunkenly]
Jack: Oh... that's why.
Elizabeth: There will come a time when you have a chance to do the right thing.
Jack: I love those moments. I like to wave at them as they pass by.
Davy Jones: Open the chest, open the chest, I need to see it.
[From At World's End]
Captain Ammand (about Barbossa): Shoot him!
Captain Jocard: Cut out his tongue!
Jack Sparrow: Shoot him and cut out his tongue, then shoot his tongue! And trim that scraggly beard!
Jack Sparrow: Why should I sail with any of you? Four of you have tried to kill me in the past... one of you succeeded.
[He looks at Elizabeth.]
Jack Sparrow: Oh, she's not told you. You'll have loads to talk about while you're here. As for you...
[He goes to Tia Dalma]
Tia Dalma: Now don't tell me you didn't enjoy it at the time.
Jack Sparrow: Fair enough. You're in.
Jack Sparrow: Where does your allegiance lie?
Tai Huang: With the highest bidder.
Jack Sparrow: I have a ship.
Tai Huang: That makes you the highest bidder.
Jack Sparrow: Good man.
Jack Sparrow: "Up is down." That's just maddingly unhelpful. Why are these things never clear?
Jack Sparrow: William, tell me somethin'. Have you come because you need my help to save a certain distressin' damsel? Or... rather damsel in distress? Either one...
Jack Sparrow: Well, then you wouldn't be here, would you? So you can't be here! Q.E.D. - you're not really here!
Will: You left Jack to the kraken.
Elizabeth: He's rescued now, it's done with. . . . Will, I had no choice.
Will: You chose not to tell me.
Elizabeth: I couldn't. It wasn't your burden to bear.
Will: But I did bear it, didn't I? I just didn't know what it was. I thought...
Elizabeth: You thought I loved him.
Will: If you make your choices alone... how can I trust you?
Elizabeth (after a pause): You can't.
Jack Sparrow: Death has a way of reshuffling one's priorities. I slip aboard the Dutchman, find the heart, take it, stab the beating thing, free your father from his debt, and you are free to be with your charming murderess.
Will: And you're willing to cut your heart out? Bind yourself to the Dutchman, forever?
Jack Sparrow: No, mate. I'm free forever. Free to sail the seas beyond the edges of the map, free from death itself.
Will: But you have to do the job, Jack. You have to ferry souls to the next world... or end up like Jones.
[Will makes a gesture of the tentacles Jones has on his face. Jack cringes and strokes his own beard]
Jack Sparrow: I haven't the face for tentacles.
Jack Sparrow: What are *you* doin'? Captain gives orders on the ship.
Barbossa: The captain of the ship *is* givin' orders.
Jack Sparrow: My ship, makes me captain.
Barbossa: They be my charts!
Jack Sparrow: Well, that makes you . . . chartman.
Barbossa: Still thinkin' of running, Jack? Think you can outrun the world? You know the problem with being the last of anything, by and by there be none left at all.
Jack Sparrow: Sometimes things come back mate. We're livin' proof, you and me.
Barbossa: I trust you to know your place in front of Captain Sao Feng.
Elizabeth: Is he that terrifying?
Barbossa: He's a lot like meself, but absent me merciful nature and sense of fair play.
Davy Jones: Ten years I devoted to the duty you charged me. Ten years I looked after those who died at sea and finally when we could be together again you weren't there. Why weren't you there?
Tia Dalma: It is my nature. Would you love me if I was anything but what I am?
Captain Jocard: Who is this traitor?
Barbossa: Not likely one among us.
Elizabeth: Where's Will?
Jack Sparrow: Not among us.
Jack Sparrow: You know, for all that pirates are clever-called, we are an unimaginative lot when it comes to naming things.
Jack Sparrow: I once sailed with a geezer lost both his arms and part of his eye.
Gibbs: What did you call him?
Jack Sparrow (after a pause): Larry.
Barbossa: The world used to be a bigger place.
Jack Sparrow: The world's still the same - there's just less in it.
Ragetti: I'm sure there must be a good reason for our suffering.
Pintel: Why don't that Obeah woman bring Jack back the same way she brought back Barbossa.
Tia Dalma: Because Barbossa was only dead. Jack Sparrow is taken body and soul to a place not of death, but of punishment, the worst fate a person can bring upon himself stretching on forever. That's what awaits at Davy Jones' locker.
Ragetti: Well, I knew there was a good reason.
Jack Sparrow (to Tia Dalma): You add an agreeable sense of the macabre to any delirium.
Bootstrap Bill: One day on shore and ten years at sea. It's a steep price for what's been done.
Will: Depends on the one day.
Jack Sparrow: If I may lend a machete to your intellectual thicket.
Elizabeth: You murdered my father.
Lord Cutler Beckett: He chose his own fate.
Elizabeth: And you have chosen yours. We will fight. And you will die.
[From On Stranger Tides]
Jack Sparrow (after being addressed as "Jack Sparrow"): There should be a "Captain" in there somewhere.
Jack Sparrow (standing on the edge of a cliff): You know that feeling you get when you're standing in a high place... sudden urge to jump?... I don't have it.
Jack Sparrow (after a spectacular escape): Did everyone see that? Because I will *not* be doing it again.
Angelica (to Jack): How is it we can never meet without you pointing something at me?
Blackbeard: If I don't kill a man once in awhile, people forget who I am.
[Blackbeard appears and stops the mutiny Jack was leading. Jack quickly changes his tune.]
Jack Sparrow: Captain, I wish to report a mutiny. I can name fingers and point names.
Blackbeard: Bring the mermaid!
Philip: You're killing her.
Blackbeard (unrepentant): I'm a bad man.
Gibbs: All part of the plan, yes?
Jack Sparrow: No.
Jack Sparrow: Have you been there?
Captain Teague: Does this face look like it's been to the fountain of youth?
Jack Sparrow: Depends on the light.
Barbossa (dressed as one of the king's men): Jack, our sands be all but run. Where's the harm in joining the winning sides?
Jack Sparrow: I understand everything... except that wig.
Jack Sparrow (finding the one who's been impersonating him): You've stolen me. And I've come to take meself back.
Angelica (caught posing as Jack): You were the only pirate I thought I could get away with.
Jack Sparrow: That is NOT a compliment.
Jack Sparrow: There is a girl. Female. Of opposite sex.
Gibbs: When is there not?
[Jack sneaks up and gets in bed with Angelica, who is asleep.]
Angelica (half asleep): Jack, if this is a dream you can leave the sword and boots on... If it is not...
Jack Sparrow (quickly): It's a dream.
Angelica: Admit it, Jack. You still love me.
Jack Sparrow: If you had a sister and a dog... I'd choose the dog.
Angelica: Wait! I'm with child... it's yours.
Jack Sparrow: I don't remember...
Angelica: You were drunk.
Jack Sparrow: I don't think I've ever been that drunk.
Angelica: I love you, Jack.
Jack Sparrow: As do I. Always have, always will.
- Lessons Learned -
What can we learn from this film series?
* He who sleeps with pigs will rise with odor.
* Don't take other people's treasure, even if they're dead.
* Pirates are not all bad.
* Rum is very handy for starting large fires.
* Increasing one's vocabulary is a good thing.
* When bargaining, be sure the terms are very clear.
* Monkeys can be cursed.
* Be very careful when telling people a fake name.
* The closet is probably not the best hiding place.
* Sometimes people deserved to be slapped.
* Not all treasure is silver and gold.
* A good decision can be a wrong decision if made for the wrong reasons.
* Dogs are useless for prison escapes.
* Know when to break the rules. Sometimes "codes" are merely guidelines!
* Some people are as vacant as a hotel run by Norman Bates.
* Try not to fall behind. People will leave you.
* On occasion, the booze must be sacrificed for the greater good.
* Avoid picking up hats that are floating in the ocean.
* Some people are entirely too caught up with their titles.
* Deals made in desperation can only end badly.
* To avoid misunderstandings, use first names when doling out assignments.
* A flogging from someone who loves you might spare you from a worse flogging from someone who doesn't.
* There comes a time when one must take responsibility for one's mistakes
* Sometimes it's not about winning or losing.
* Be very suspicious when someone suggests that you settle their debts.
* Why fight when you can negotiate?
* Sea monsters have a remarkably predictable attack plan.
* Sometimes the only way for a pirate to make a living is by betraying other pirates.
* Words whispered through prison bars lose their charm.
* No course is lost if but one fool is left to fight.
* Never trust a man who will sell his loyalty for a bribe.
* Cursed monkeys are even more annoying in miniature.
* A ruthless cad betrays your trust and does you wrong? Gee, who could've seen that coming!
* Be very suspicious when an ex starts to show interest in you again.
* Trying to be selfish may cost you. Big time.
- Favorite Scenes -
Also known as "moments"
[From Curse of the Black Pearl]
Sailing into Port Royal, Jack notices the corpses of men who have been hanged, and he stands to pay his respects. Next to the bodies, he sees a sign that reads, "Pirates ye be warned," and he flippantly salutes as if to say, "Noted."
Continuing the opening scene, Jack is sailing into Port Royal. On the way, however, his ship springs a leak. Undaunted, he carries on. By the time he reaches the harbor, only the top of the mast is above water, and sinking slowly. Riding on the mast, Jack is able to step easily onto the dock as the boat becomes completely submerged.
As Jack holds Elizabeth hostage on the docks, he makes her put his gear on him. At one point, she reaches both arms around to fasten something on, and Jack looks smugly over her shoulder at Norrington as if to say, "Look how close I am to your girl."
When Jack and Will are fighting at the blacksmith shop, Jack asks, "You're not a eunuch, are you?" He glances down as if to check. (As a side note, when Will responds that he practices with the swords so that he can kill pirates, one of Orlando Bloom's tattoos is visible peeking out from his right sleeve. I was glad to notice this because any glimpse at the real Orlando is a good thing. ;)
When Will and Jack board the Dauntless, they sneak on deck to confront the crew. Jack shouts that they are taking over the ship. Behind him, Will, with his sword drawn shouts, "Aye! Avast!" The sailors laugh, probably because it's Jack and Will against multiple men - but also maybe because they don't really talk like that. Jack turns to give Will a what-the-heck-are-you-doing look. Will looks back at Jack, and seeing his expression, Will's eyebrows raise quizzically. He looks so sweet, like a little kid trying to please.
In the cave with the treasure, the crew from the Black Pearl is shocked to find Jack. One stammers, "You're supposed to be dead." Still groggy from having been knocked out by Will with an oar, Jack asks, "Am I not?" and he looks down at himself to check.
When Barbossa asks Jack how he got off the island, Jack replies that when they marooned him they forgot one thing. After a pause for effect, Jack says, in a confident yet hushed tone, "I'm Captain Jack Sparrow," and he holds his hands out a little in a "Ta da!" fashion.
After the curse is lifted, Will approaches Elizabeth in the cave. They look at each other as if they might kiss, but then the noise of Jack clanging the treasure he's looking through spoils the moment. Elizabeth says that they should be getting back to the ship. Pain clouds Will's face as he realizes the situation and he says quietly, "Your fiancé will be wanting to know you're safe."
In one scene, Jack Sparrow is about to be hanged. A man is reading out the charges, and at the mention of one incident, Jack smiles widely at the memory. He glances around as if seeking to share in his mirth, but he sees the executioner and quickly sobers, reminded of his current fate.
[From Dead Man's Chest]
Jack's entrance is another classic. On a violent, torturous island, men are heaving coffins into the water. As they float into the ocean, a crow lands on top of one and starts pecking with its beak. A gunshot from inside blasts the bird into oblivion. A hand holding a pistol emerges and swings the gun around in case any danger is lurking. The hand is pulled back into the coffin and Jack breaks through the thin wood. He reshapes his favorite hat and puts it on. With a "Sorry, mate," to the corpse inside the coffin with him, he breaks off one of the skeleton's legs and uses it as an oar.
When Jack returns to the Black Pearl, the crew is disgruntled at not having done any "honest pirating" lately. Jack retaliates that perhaps it's not best for him to be captain. Mr. Cotton's parrot squawks, "Walk the plank." Jack cocks his pistol and aims it at the parrot, demanding, "What did that bird say?!"
Beckett has Will brought in, to talk to him about finding Jack. Will asks how Beckett knows Jack, and Beckett replies, "We've had dealings in the past," as he reveals a red hot 'P' branding iron that he's just taken from the fire. Beckett adds that "We've each left our mark on the other." Will asks, "What mark did he leave on you?"
When Elizabeth confronts Lord Beckett, she says that she is there to negotiate. He responds, "I'm listening." She cocks the pistol she's holding and points it at his forehead. He adds, "I'm listening intently."
Continuing the previous scene, Elizabeth thinks that Beckett is after the treasure of the Isla de Muerta. She hints that she has information, but he interrupts. He knows about the curse, and he remarks that he's interested in a different chest. He suggests that she may want to enhance his offer. She puts the muzzle of the pistol under his chin. Seething with anger, she says, "Consider into your calculations that you robbed me of my wedding night."
When Jack finds Bootstrap Bill below deck, he can't believe what he's seeing. He asks, "Is this a dream?" Bootstrap replies, "No." Jack says, "I thought not. If it were, there'd be rum." In response, Bootstrap offers the bottle that he's holding.
The scene where Jack tells Elizabeth to "persuade him" to return the letters is very sexy. Jack's got that so-bad-he's-good vibe going on. (Excuse me while I wipe my drool...)
The scene where Elizabeth kisses Jack is my favorite of the movie. At first it looks like they were both right in what they had said earlier: Jack chose to do the right thing, like Elizabeth said he would, and it appears as though him proving her right inspires her to reveal her feelings for him. Instead, she chains him to the mast. It appears that she wants to kiss him again as she's talking, but she doesn't. Her real feelings for him remain a mystery. And poor Will catches a glimpse of the kiss, making the situation even more interesting. You can see that he's devastated. He doesn't see Elizabeth trap Jack, so he doesn't know it was a trick. From the way he acts for the rest of the movie, I can't help wondering what will become of their relationship.
- Afterthoughts -
Credit: the movie overview and quotes are from the IMDb.
¹ Thanks to Isabella S for the quote!
* Pirates of the Caribbean website links: POTC @ IMDB, POTC2 @ IMDB, POTC3 @ IMDB, POTC4 @ IMDB, @ Wikipedia, POTC2 @ Wikipedia, POTC3 @ Wikipedia, POTC4 @ Wikipedia, POTC transcript, POTC2 transcript, fanlisting, POTC fanfiction, Puppet Parody, POTC2 Puppet Parody
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