Pirates of the Caribbean: At World’s End
|Pirates of the Caribbean: At World’s End is a 2007 American adventure fantasy, the third film in the Pirates of the Caribbean series. The plot follows Will Turner (Orlando Bloom), Elizabeth Swann (Keira Knightley), and the crew of the Black Pearl rescuing Captain Jack Sparrow (Johnny Depp), from Davy Jones’s Locker, and then preparing to fight the East India Trading Company, led by Cutler Beckett (Tom Hollander) and Davy Jones (Bill Nighy), who plan to extinguish piracy. Gore Verbinski directed the film, as he did with the previous two. It was shot in two shoots during 2005 and 2006, the former simultaneously with the preceding film, Pirates of the Caribbean: Dead Man’s Chest.
The film was released in English-speaking countries on May 25, 2007 after Disney decided to move the release date a day earlier than originally planned. Critical reviews were mixed, but At World’s End was a box office hit, becoming the most successful film of 2007, with over $960 million worldwide.
It was nominated for the Academy Award for Makeup and the Academy Award for Visual Effects, which it lost to La Vie en Rose and The Golden Compass, respectively. A fourth installment, On Stranger Tides, the first to neither be directed by Verbinski nor star Bloom and Knightley, was released in cinemas on May 20, 2011.
As of 2012, it remains the most expensive film ever made, with the highest budget to date.
To control the oceans for E. I. Co., Lord Cutler Beckett executes anyone associated with piracy and uses Davy Jones to destroy all pirate ships on the seas. Condemned prisoners sing “Hoist the Colours” to prompt the nine pirate lords of the Brethren Court to convene at Shipwreck Cove; however, the late Captain Jack Sparrow, pirate lord of the Caribbean, never appointed a successor by passing on his piece of eight. Captain Barbossa leads Will, Elizabeth, Tia Dalma and the crew of the Black Pearl to rescue Jack from Davy Jones’s Locker. Sao Feng, pirate lord of the South China Sea, possesses “The Navigation Charts”, a map to the Locker where Jack is imprisoned. Will bargains with Feng for the Pearl in exchange for Sparrow, so Will can rescue his father from Davy Jones and The Flying Dutchman.
Meanwhile, Davy Jones – under control of Lord Beckett (whoever has the heart controls Jones) – destroys several pirate ships, leaving no survivors. Beckett confronts Jones with his decision to place the Chest of Davy Jones on board his ship The Flying Dutchman and post Marines to guard it under command of the very man who stole Jones’ heart, Admiral James Norrington.
The crew meanwhile journeys into the Locker, retrieves Sparrow and the Pearl, but must find a way out. As the Pearl seeks an escape route, dead souls float past, including Elizabeth’s father Weatherby Swann, murdered by Beckett. Tia Dalma reveals that Davy Jones was appointed by Calypso, his lover and goddess of the Sea, to ferry the dead to the next world; in return, Jones could step upon land for one day every ten years to be with his love. When she failed to meet him, he abandoned his duty and transformed into a monster, along with the rest of his crew. Jack then finds a means of escape encoded in the “Navigation Chart”.
On returning to the living world, the Pearl is ambushed by Sao Feng, who reveals his agreement with Will. Feng betrays Will, handing over the crew to Beckett in exchange for the Pearl. Beckett takes Sparrow aboard his flagship, the Endeavour, but Jack refuses to divulge where the Brethren Court will convene. Jack offers to lure the Court out, in exchange for Beckett’s protecting him from Jones. Feng then bargains with Barbossa to release the Pearl in exchange for Elizabeth, whom he believes is Calypso in human form. Feng’s ship, The Empress, leaves with Elizabeth, and the Pearl launches a running broadside against the Endeavour, allowing Jack to escape back to the Pearl, though not before damaging the Endeavour’s mainmast and delaying Beckett for several hours. Feng tells Elizabeth that the first Brethren Court trapped Calypso in human form so men could rule the oceans with ease. When Davy Jones attacks Feng’s ship, the mortally wounded Feng appoints Elizabeth his successor, then she and the crew are imprisoned in the Flying Dutchman’s brig. Bootstrap Bill Turner (now becoming a part of the ship) tells Elizabeth that whoever stabs Davy Jones’ heart becomes the next captain of the Dutchman. Admiral Norrington, regretting betraying the crew of the Pearl and disgusted at Beckett’s behavior, frees Elizabeth and her crew. They escape to their ship, but Norrington is killed by a crazed Bootstrap Bill.
Will leaves a trail of floating corpses for Beckett’s ship to follow. Jack catches Will in the act, though reveals it was part of his plan. Jack suggests he stab the heart to solve Will’s conflicting obligations to his father and to Elizabeth, then forces Will overboard after giving him his compass (it points to what you desire most) so as to allow Beckett to find Shipwreck Cove. Will is rescued by the Endeavour, and Davy Jones reveals to him that he masterminded Calypso’s imprisonment at the First Brethren Court. At Shipwreck Cove, the pirate lords present their nine “pieces of eight”, but disagree over Barbossa’s proposal to free Calypso.
Meanwhile on the Pearl Tia Dalma (Calypso) plays her music box, then hears another, which is revealed to belong to Jones. Jones asks why she left him, to which she replies “It is my nature”. He reveals the pirates’ plans to free her. Calypso declares that she will only let them free her so she can take revenge for her imprisonment, allowing Beckett to succeed and she and Jones to be together.
Back at Shipwreck Cove, Barbossa calls upon Captain Teague, Jack’s father and Keeper of the Pirate’s Code, to confirm that only an elected ‘Pirate King’ can declare war. There have been no Pirate Kings since the first Court because the Pirate Lords always vote for themselves, and no Lord has ever had a plurality. Jack calls for a vote, the first eight Lords vote for themselves, and Jack breaks the stalemate by voting for Elizabeth. She is now “king”, and she favors a war. The pirates prepare for battle, but Barbossa quietly takes the pieces of eight for himself. The next day, during a parley with Beckett and Jones, Elizabeth swaps Sparrow for Will after realizing Jack and Will have planned to have Jack stab the heart; this places Jack on the Dutchman with the heart, however, he is at first stuck in the brig, to Jones’ delight. Elizabeth is still determined to fight, despite the fact that the armada outnumbers the pirate fleet by over a hundred to one, not including the considerable advantage provided by the Dutchman.
Barbossa steals Jack’s and Elizabeth’s “pieces of eight” and uses it and its counterparts to free Calypso from human form. As she transforms, Will knows that she will not bring them favor, and discloses that Davy Jones betrayed her to the Brethren Court. Barbossa prays for her help, but Calypso’s fury unleashes a violent storm and a maelstrom, in which The East India Company and the Brethren Court will battle, but only the Dutchman and the Pearl can participate due to their ethereal nature . Sparrow escapes the Dutchman’s brig and steals the Dead Man’s Chest, which leads to a duel with an irate Jones, during which his sword is shattered. In the heat of battle Will proposes to Elizabeth, who accepts, and during the fighting Captain Barbossa marries them. Will and Elizabeth board the Dutchman to retrieve the chest, but Jones defeats both before being confronted by Jack, whose has acquired both the key and the chest and threatened to stab the heart. Jones, in a moment of spite, thrusts his sword through Will’s chest. This breaks the hold the Dutchman has on Bootstrap Bill’s mind, and attacks Jones in a rage. Sparrow places his broken sword in Will’s hand and forces him to stab it. Jones spasms, turns, sees the pierced heart and falls into the maelstrom, uttering Calypso’s name for the last time. Jack and Elizabeth escape as the Dutchman and its crew, along with Will, is pulled under. While Elizabeth is devastated, Jack orders the Pearl to weigh anchor, obstinately to show his fulfillment of the deal he made with Beckett. Having lost the Dutchman and Jack still a dangerous liability, Beckett moves to attack the Pearl, justifying it as “just good business”. The storm and maelstrom have ceased, but the Dutchman resurfaces with Will as the captain and the crew restored to human form. Bootstrap had removed Will’s heart and put it in the Chest. The Dutchman and the Pearl turn about and attack the Endeavour, annihilating the ship and a shattered Beckett; with no leader and facing two seemingly invincible ships, the armada retreats.
Will is bound to sail the sea as the Dutchman’s captain, ferrying the dead. Elizabeth bids Jack, Barbossa and the crew farewell; then she and Will have one day together. He departs after giving Elizabeth the Dead Man’s Chest. Jack and Gibbs find themselves stranded in Tortuga: Barbossa has commandeered the Pearl in order to find the Fountain of Youth, only to discover Jack had already cut out the middle of the map as insurance. The film ends with Jack sailing from Tortuga in a dingy to find the Fountain.
In a post-credits scene set ten years later, Elizabeth and her son (he sings “A Pirate’s Life for Me”) watch from a seacliff as the Dutchman appears with Will Turner aboard, anticipating “one day on land” to spend with Elizabeth.