Friday, July 07, 2006

Walk the Gangplank!

Warning: Spoilers for Pirates of the Caribbean: Curse of the Black Pearl!

Ahoy Mateys! Today's the day! Dead Man's Chest is officially in theaters, which means we get another helping of what we loved during the first go-round. In case you didn't catch that installment it offered swashbuckling galore, scary sea voyages, interplay between a miriade of characters, witty one liners and a love story for the girls. However I believe the original gained "big hit" status because it pushed the tried-and-true seafarer adventure story a tad WAY farther.

As the anxious worrier I am, I'm concerned about the extreme use of paranormal elements. During the trailer, I found myself asking how is this going to fly? Is Davey Jone's octopus beard and a shark headed first mate going too far? And those examples are plastered (not peppered lightly) throughout the tidbit we've been hooked with to rush out and see the movie. Like everyone else, it also made me wonder--What else does Dead Man's Chest hold in store? Because if you loved Pirates of the Carribean: Curse of the Black Pearl's huge twist, where we found out that Jack Sparrow is an undead skeleton trying to save his hide, then you know there will be an uber twist among this plotline.

Taking the concept off the big screen and in between those fabulous black and white pages, how far do you think the envelope is pushable? Do you think walking too thin a line between conventional and outrageously out-there is grounds for a one-way walk into the toiling sea?

I try to have some real-life basis for the flights of fancy my imagination takes. Not because I can't think of the "weird stuff" myself, but because I feel it gives readers a jumping off point. But from all the reviews, blurbs and books I've read I see more writers' everyday pushing what's possible in our diverse marketplace. Traditional houses have propped open their doors, and e-publishers are proving that people will buy less mainstream works based on trips to whole new worlds within author's brains. In the spirit of Keira Knightly who asked for more swordfights because she's a kick-butt girl with `tude, I say, "Go for it! But tread lightly."


Angela Verdenius said...

oh, I can't wait to see the next Pirates! I haven't seen the second one yet. Johnny Depp is SO hot *tongue hanging out* I may have to bring a bib. LOL.

I love the supernatural element, it adds a nice touch (especially as I love horror and fantasy). And it creates great moments for dry one-liners.

I love humour in a movie, mixed with action, a touch of romance (the lucky heroine gets to kiss JD and OB, doesn't she?), a touch of the supernatural, and a bit of historical. What more could a fan ask for?

IMO - we need more of these fun-filled films!

Bernadette Gardner and Jennifer Colgan said...

I love a swashbuckling adventure! The amount of paranormal elements can be a lot or a little as long as the characters are strong and the plot is good. Unfortunately, juts like the movie industry, the publishing industry works on the 'too much is never enough' principle. If something gets critical acclaim or big sales, boom, everyone is copying it - more, more, more until people are bored. That's why great trends such as the vampire trend or the paranormal trend flare up and then fizzle. If there was moderation in everything, then there'd be a nice selection of new things available in all genres all the time and everyone reader or movie goer would always be happy.

Lynda K. Scott said...

I agree with Jennifer. I love Johnny Depp, loved the Pirate movie and eagerly wait to see the new one. But too much of a good thing can be a bad thing in today's marketplace and I'd hate to see it all come to a ho-hum end.

Then again...I hate to see it rationed because then, well, there wouldn't be as much to read or watch. It's a true Catch-22.