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

Fall TV The Arrangement Grammys American Society of Cinematographers X-Men 007 Countdown SDCC Election crime Video Games Tumblr Awards Opinion Thanksgiving Freeform Comic Book cops war FX YA Universal CBS TV Land AMC aliens Rock Valentine's Day The CW vampires cinemax Oscars History crime drama Fantasy DirecTV Calendar TBS supernatural MTV Ghostbusters boxoffice crime thriller 2017 Summer WGN Lionsgate Musicals Nat Geo Starz harry potter Amazon biography El Rey FOX ESPN Toys Character Guide TCM Action Trivia Musical First Look psycho diversity TNT Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt singing competition Sci-Fi Country NYCC President USA Cartoon Network Rom-Com HBO Spring TV DC Comics Mystery Cosplay Kids & Family docudrama CMT Schedule sports Set visit Syfy VICE Podcast Year in Review Watching Series Comedy Central Netflix NBC 2016 CBS All Access TIFF Emmys Lifetime Premiere Dates Horror Trailer politics LGBTQ dramedy Red Carpet TruTV CNN Animation GLAAD Nominations ITV Photos TV 24 frames social media Nickelodeon Box Office Star Trek Logo Superheroes Hulu Rocky Polls and Games Certified Fresh Bravo Winners E3 Music A&E Mary Tyler Moore OWN Dark Horse Comics Best and Worst Disney RT History SundanceTV Star Wars Interview Food Network BBC America Extras serial killer GIFs Pop sitcom transformers Showtime GoT Teen Writers Guild of America police drama PBS Super Bowl Winter TV TCA 2017 thriller Pirates VH1 technology BBC Masterpiece ABC composers TCA cooking zombie Reality Competition ABC Family Biopics Sundance based on movie APB Ellie Kemper Martial Arts science fiction discovery Reality Fox News comiccon Holidays Mindy Kaling Marathons 2015 Marvel BET Comedy Infographic Esquire Drama Sneak Peek Tomatazos FXX MSNBC IFC historical drama Adult Swim TLC Disney Channel Crackle political drama PaleyFest travel period drama adventure E!