Before Pirates of the Caribbean: The Curse of the Black Pearl was released, its arrival was greeted with skepticism. After all, this was a movie based on a theme park ride. The production went on to be one of the best reviewed motion pictures of 2003, and "if" questions about a second installment became "when." Because the follow-up story devised by director Gore Verbinski and writers Ted Elliott & Terry Rossio was too big for a single film, the filmmakers decided to make Pirates 2 and Pirates 3 back-to-back (as was done with The Matrix and Back to the Future sequels, and the entire Lord of the Rings trilogy), providing less down time in between episodes. The verdict for the middle movie of the proposed three-film arc: although not as much fun as its predecessor, it nevertheless delivers enough jaunty adventure and derring-do to keep fans entertained. The double-cliffhanger ending assures that audience members will be back for Pirates 3. In fact, if the movie didn't look so good on the big screen, I might be tempted to recommend that viewers wait for the next movie to open, then rent this one and see them as a double-feature.
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