Blockbuster sequels tend to be guilty of many of the same cinematic crimes. They are completely self-referential and rarely bring anything new to the original idea. They’re too long. The scripts are extremely episodic and have far more interest in ever escalating set pieces than the story or characters. They rely far too much on CGI. So it is with Dead Man’s Chest. I personally thought the supernatural element was the weakest aspect of the original film and would have preferred to have seen a straightforward swashbuckling adventure with more of Captain Jack’s dubious morality and witty dialogue at the centre. Instead what we were presented with reminded me of a Pixar cartoon, with much of the same kind of humour and sight gags; Jack even reminded me of Tom & Jerry as he tip-toed up to situations, pulled a face and ran away again – time after time. My gripes are mainly aimed at it’s inferiority to the original but taken as a film in its own right, it actually isn’t too bad. It’s nice to see Keira Knightley engaged in some swashbuckling of her own and Norrington is instantly promoted from peripheral nobody to the second most interesting character in the story.
As a whole Dead Man’s Chest is amusing if forgettable and the ending inevitably seems more like a sly way to pressgang the audience into watching yet another sequel than a genuine conclusion to the story.