I finally got around to seeing POTC 2: Dead Man's Chest*. A one-word summary does not do the film justice, even if it is 'Amazing' or 'Incredible'. It may be cliche to those who have seen all the great old swashbuckling films, but I'll be damned if old, cranky reviewers are going to take away our generation's Eroll Flynn movies. It could be argued that allowing ourselves to see re-tread after re-tread of the same basic material is unoriginal, and a disgrace to art, but I beg to differ, actually.
There are - or I am told, at any rate - less than 10 'original' plots, upon which nigh all entertainment is based. If you've taken an English course, you know about the kinds of conflict that a story can have: man vs. man, man vs. self, etc. In a way, there ARE only so many stories to be told: they all boil down to "man/woman faces X " and then they win, or they lose. What counts is how you do it. A lot of movies are great because they take the cliched setups we all know and yawn at, and then either play them for laughs (ie. the Princess Bride*), or maybe twist them a bit (Kiss Kiss, Bang Bang*).
Now, POTC 2 doesn't really do either of these things. So what is it that makes it so good? The THIRD option for making an entertaining movie in a done-to-death genre: make a good movie, straight up. Pirates is adrenaline-filled, hilarious adventure from start to finish. It is just so much fun to watch, you can't help but have a good time. I don't care how many swashbuckling films you've already seen, Pirates 2 should still entertain you. It isn't all-new, but it is by no means a complete re-tread of the first film. The best part is that it ends on a much more pronounced cliffhanger than its predecessor, which allows it to stay at full-throttle for much more of its length than would be possible if they had to worry about wrapping up the story in any sort of clean fashion.
So on the down side of my rollercoaster ride, my girlfriend is overworked, underpaid, and I would suspect underfed. I'm doubt I've done anywhere near enough to be of any help, so she's not exactly in the best of moods. I'm such a total ass, you don't have to tell me that I deserve death and all that...Such as it is, project "do some nice stuff, and NOT be an ass" is getting underway very shortly. Ah, the holes I dig myself into.
That's all for tonight. Somebody hide the damn shovel, and get me a dump truck; I don't relish the thought of getting dug in any deeper.