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This weekend I went, along with my regular entourage, to watch probably one of the most anticipated movies ever (anticipated by me at least). I have been a fan of the Pirates franchise, ever since I watched the first movie on a flight from Amsterdam to Chicago. I enjoyed it a lot and made it a point to watch it again on the return flight. Somewhere along the way I got my sister hooked as well and since then both of us waited eagerly for the rest of the movies (Pirates 2 was already in theaters when I watched the first movie, so that wasn’t a long wait). However, after the third movie came out in 2007 we were heart-broken. Was this the end of a well-loved series? Will we never see Jack Sparrow ever again? And then we read the rumors, about a fourth installment. Though this was hinted at at the end of the Pirates 3, we weren’t sure if it would pull through. Eagerly we kept up with the news, and lo and behold a release date of 2011 was given, this was 2008. However, a 3 year wait is a long time and back then it felt like it would never happen. We had all but forgotten about it, when it came back in the news. Orlando Bloom and Keira Knightley were not coming back, yet Johnny Depp was there. It would be good! Right?

So after watching it this Sunday, I am not sure. I enjoyed the movie, it was very entertaining with all the swash-buckling and witty repartee. However, I thought it lacked something. I still haven’t figured out what the “something” is. I definitely missed Will Turner and Elizabeth Swann,  but Angelica (played by Penelope Cruz) was a good addition. Ian McShane as Black Beard didn’t really gel with me, he was supposed to be sinister yet I don’t think he was sinister enough. The love story of the missionary and the mermaid was senseless and (Spoiler Alert) was a sub-plot that was left hanging. Many of the jokes and one-liners felt forced. However, the locations were great and so were the costumes. The casting was excellent as well.

I would give the Pirates of the Caribbean: On Stranger Tides 3 stars out of 5. 2.5 for old times sake and .5 for the movie.

(The poster is from Google Images, I own nothing.)