Critics Consensus

Critical Consensus: "Dead Man's Chest" Is Overstuffed; "Scanner" Shines Darkly

by | July 6, 2006 | Comments

This week at the movies, we’ve got pirates back for more box office bounty (“Pirates of the Caribbean: Dead Man’s Chest“) and a journey to the center of the mind (“A Scanner Darkly“). What do the critics have to say?

Pirates of the Caribbean: The Curse of the Black Pearl” was a delightful left field surprise: a funny, rollicking, swashbuckling adventure (as well as the greatest film ever based on an amusement park ride). So what does director Gore Verbinski do for an encore? According to critics, more, more, more. And that’s not necessarily a good thing. In “Dead Man’s Chest,” Johnny Depp is back as the scoundrel Jack Sparrow, with Keira Knightley and Orlando Bloom along for the ride, this time aboard a craft containing the cephalopodan Davy Jones and his crew. The scribes say that while there are plenty of interesting effects and exciting set pieces, there’s just too much in this “Chest,” and it lacks the easygoing, organic charm of the original. At 55 percent on the Tomatometer, this “Pirates'” life may or may not be for you. And it’s well below the high watermark set by the original (at 79 percent).

“Dead Man’s Chest”: Rated ARRRGH!

The writings of Philip K. Dick have inspired a bunch of good-to-great movies (“Blade Runner,” “Total Recall,” “Minority Report“) and it’s easy to see why: Dick spun futuristic, Orwellian sci-fi tales that are chock full of paranoia and multilayered plot points. With “A Scanner Darkly,” Richard Linklater adapts Dick’s novel with the rotoscoping techniques he applied to “Waking Life.” The story involves a cop (Keanu Reeves) who is so far undercover in a drug investigation that it’s unclear he’ll ever find his way out. The critics say this one’s a visually arresting head trip, but some say it’s not quite as compelling as it wants to be. At 63 percent on the Tomatometer, this one may be worth a “Scan.”

“You’re sayin’ the FBI’s gonna pay me to learn to surf?”

Also in theaters, albeit in limited release: “Once in a Lifetime,” a documentary about the New York Cosmos soccer team of the 1970s, is at 90 percent on the Tomatometer, and “Heading South,” starring Charlotte Rampling, is at 62 percent.

Recent Johnny Depp Movies:
31% — The Libertine (2005)
83% — Charlie and the Chocolate Factory (2005)
83% — Corpse Bride (2005)
84% — Finding Neverland (2004)
47% — Secret Window (2004)

Recent Richard Linklater Movies:
47% — The Bad News Bears (2005)
94% — Before Sunset (2004)
90% — School of Rock (2003)
75% — Tape (2001)
79% — Waking Life (2001)

Tag Cloud

2015 Extras Showtime Watching Series TLC Interview The CW FOX ABC Family Action Ghostbusters Sci-Fi docudrama PaleyFest Valentine's Day DC Comics Grammys Nat Geo Pirates Marvel Election Biopics Schedule SDCC Emmys OWN MTV Infographic ABC Premiere Dates Winter TV Mary Tyler Moore LGBTQ Marathons TBS Food Network Summer APB Character Guide FXX 2016 Reality Competition MSNBC The Arrangement NYCC CBS Exclusive Video Lifetime BBC Star Trek police drama GLAAD Video Games dramedy Adult Swim Mystery WGN CMT Crackle DirecTV Photos Certified Fresh Red Carpet Opinion Set visit Fox News Fantasy VH1 adventure TruTV AMC HBO Fall TV zombie Disney war diversity Disney Channel Awards Comic Book CNN Starz BBC America boxoffice Nickelodeon Pop TV Comedy First Look ITV Sundance Nominations SundanceTV Comedy Central 24 frames based on movie cops period drama E! Netflix Podcast technology Amazon FX Box Office Teen TIFF crime drama RT History discovery serial killer El Rey cinemax Horror Country Countdown Super Bowl TV Land Hulu CBS All Access TNT Animation Thanksgiving singing competition Universal Tumblr ESPN VICE 007 GIFs Rocky Music TCM X-Men aliens Rom-Com Freeform Lionsgate Musicals comiccon Syfy Best and Worst travel Martial Arts Esquire Toys Dark Horse Comics Trailer Logo Sneak Peek 2017 BET Star Wars Holidays NBC sitcom IFC thriller Masterpiece Trivia Oscars Superheroes sports Year in Review PBS social media Drama TCA 2017 Winners science fiction Writers Guild of America Spring TV harry potter Cartoon Network Kids & Family History crime TCA President crime thriller Tomatazos cooking vampires A&E supernatural Rock Polls and Games Cosplay GoT politics Reality American Society of Cinematographers psycho biography USA Calendar Bravo