And as for the movie... Woohoo! It is le awesomeness, to give the French term. There is swashing of buckles, buckling of swashes, derring do, derring done, much action, much comedy, a smidge of romance... oh yeah, and Orlando Bloom. *purr*
Damnit, why haven't I made myself an Orlando Bloom icon yet?
Anyhow, I would recommend the movie to y'all, although I will agree that there is a bit too much slapstick/pratfalling in some places. And some things that were just.... ewwww. But those were minor quibbles, compared to the awesomely awesomeness that is the movie as a whole.
I'll go a bit against the grain here, and say that frankly I could have done without Elizabeth Swann becoming Total Swashbuckling Babe. I rather liked that she knew ship terms, and even tactics and had a cool head under fire, as shown in the first movie, and thought that it would have worked well to have her like that, and Will be the more physical fighting-of-enemies, swashing-of-buckles type. But now we've got Elizabeth also suddenly a swordmaster (sword-mistress?), and Will spouting out all the tactics. Can't we have some heroes that don't do *everything*, and instead fill their own niches, and do it well? Does a female character *have* to know how to kick ass and take names with a sword, to be well-rounded (er, you know what I mean) and valuable to the crew, and even heroic? Although I did like that at least they telegraph to the audience just *why* she suddenly knows how to use a sword, and it does make some sense. (Although I'd like to know just what her father thought of his daughter, daughter of the governor, off learning to use a sword with her hubby-to-be...)
I totally don't think I'd have caught the whole Davy Jones-has-the-same-music-thingy as the voodoo woman bit, if I hadn't seen it previously mentioned in some comments that I actually read, even while trying to avoid spoilers. Dude. That should go interesting places next time.
I'm also looking forward to finding out just why Jack Sparrow can't use the compass, unless I missed it in the movie. (There weren't any especially ill-bred brats or cell-phone users in the theater, but it was still an almost sold-out house, so it still got a bit noisy at times, especially when the crowd was laughing, which was often. So I missed some dialogue, I'm sure.) Is there something that he desires even more than what he needs to get Davy Jones off his back, that doesn't let the compass "work" for him like that? Why could he use it just fine in the first movie? I'm waiting to see just where they go with that.
And I wonder if we'll even get an explanation for... just before the credits. (I know, I know, it's a spoiler space but... even still, I can't bring myself to type it. ;) ) We'd better!
Oh and (since this isn't a spoiler and I can add it back out here)... what the hell are the critics smoking? I mean, I can see some of the negatives pulling the movie down if you really rate them higher than I would (the slapstickness, etc... but it's a freaking DISNEY movie, based on the RIDE, fercryinoutloud, what do you expect?), but some of the comments I've seen for example on Rottontomatoes.com, about the consensus being that it lacks the humor of the first, etc? Dude, the hell? The entire audience was laughing and even cheering so often during the movie that I didn't bother trying to count, including me, despite that I was all nervy and stuff going to the movies for the first time in years. Put the crack-pipe down, people!
I probably have more to say, but... my mind's still a bit spinny with all the action and shiny pretty effects and stuff. So I guess if I have more to add, it'll be in comments here, or elsewhere. Or an edit, or, if needed, a second post.