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Pirates of the Caribbean uncovered

An article by LucasTones, posted on September 30. 2003.

WARNING: This article contains spoilers. If you haven't seen Pirates of the Caribbean: The Curse of the Black Pearl, but intend to and do not wish to know the plot, please do not read.

Pirates of the Caribbean: The Curse of the Black Pearl
This movie has created something of a stir in the Monkey Island fan community but why? There are tons of other pirate movies out there, and no-one is especially excited about those ones. The reason is that this particular pirate movie comes, effectively, from the same source that inspired The Secret of Monkey Island. That source is found at Disneyland Pirates of the Caribbean the ride. This is somewhat strange in itself; usually the theme park ride is based on the movie, not the other way round. So, whatever madness was floating around inside the heads of the Disney executives when they decided to start making movies based on rides I do not know - but what I do know is that against all the odds, Pirates of the Caribbean: The Curse of the Black Pearl is a bloody good movie.

The decision to put Jerry Bruckheimer as the producer is perhaps the most important thing that happened during the course of pre-production on this film. Bruckheimer is the king of summer blockbusters, and although that doesn't necessarily mean he makes good movies, they are almost always entertaining. Bruckheimer took the early draft of the movie and re-crafted it into the perfect swashbuckler he brought in new scriptwriters, kicked Alan Silvestri (soundtrack composer) off the project and demanded better of almost every aspect of the movie. Key to the new version was the character of Jack Sparrow, and despite Bruckheimers' reputation for making purely moneymaking pictures, he was the mastermind behind the most ambitious and pivotal aspect of the film Johnny Depp. Bruckheimer sold the idea to Depp, and brought him onto the project. Strange as this sounds, Depp is the heart of this movie take him out of the equation and the film would die. Normally, an actor's performance makes a movie better or worse, but in this case the film is weighted squarely on Depp. There are very few other actors who would have been able to make the character of Jack Sparrow as entertaining and watchable as Depp, and as Sparrow features in the vast majority of the scenes in this film, get him wrong and you have problems.

The rest of the cast, with the exception of Geoffrey Rush (who gives a fantastic performance as the evil Barbossa, drawing the perfect line between tongue-in-cheek and realism) are there purely to bolster ticket sales. In much the same way Titanic cleaned up at the box office thanks to the hoards of Leonardo DiCaprio fans, Orlando Bloom is there to give the female audience a reason to see the movie. Keira Knightley has the same effect on the males, and the rest of the predominantly British cast are there presumably because they cost less (and it also handily ties in with the factual elements of the film.) For example, one British soldier who features heavily in the film, mostly as comic relief, had only been seen in a UK margarine commercial prior to the movie, and even then it wasn't a speaking role.

So, here we have a Bruckheimer produced Disney blockbuster with a rent-a-star cast and pirate theme. It really shouldn't work. But it does, and in fantastic fashion. The basic plot revolves around Jack Sparrows quest to regain Captaincy of his stolen ship, the titular Black Pearl. Using everyone at his disposal to reach his own ends, along the way he enlists the help of Will Turner, a young blacksmith who loves Elizabeth Swann, daughter of the governor of the island. Elizabeth is duly kidnapped by Barbossa and his crew, who mistakenly believe she will help them to break a curse that has transformed them into skeletons. Sparrow, meanwhile, knows that the person they really need is Turner but unfortunately, he is being chased by Commodore Norrington of the British Navy who has a sworn hatred of pirates. So ensues a tale of backstabbing and adventure, with ship-to-ship battles and swordfights at every possible opportunity. Whenever the curse of the summer movie threatens to take over, and it looks like its about to turn into a special effects festival, Depp or Rush save the day with some truly outstanding dialogue lines such as I feel nothin' not the wind on my face nor the spray o' the sea sound corny and ridiculous on paper, but Rush manages to deliver it so brilliantly that all rationality is thrown out the window and we are sucked into the story even more.

This is an action adventure that truly rivals Indiana Jones in the enjoyment stakes. I can think of no higher praise to bestow than that.

So, now you know a bit about the movie but again, why should you care? You came to a Monkey Island website, not a movie review one. Well, due to the shared heritage between The Secret of Monkey Island, and the rest of the Monkey Island series, and Pirates of the Caribbean: The Curse of the Black Pearl there have been many claims that the movie has in fact been inspired by the games as well, in some ways. I hope to settle the nature of these claims once and for all in the remainder of this article, under four sections: plot, characters, events and music. To make things less confusing, each of the three points of reference will be referred to as follows (in chronological order):

potc: Pirates of the Caribbean (the ride)
MI: Monkey Island (any of the games)
TCOTBP: Pirates of the Caribbean: The Curse of the Black Pearl (the movie)

The plot of the movie has already been outlined, but not in great detail. I'll just quickly go over the plots of each to make things easier:

Pirates of the Caribbean: the ride doesn't have a specific plot as such, but the basic premise can be picked up by simply going on the ride. As you approach the town, a pirate ship opens fire on the fort. Entering the town itself, various pirate-types are seen setting fire to the buildings, stealing, chasing the women-folk and getting drunk. This is Disney, so it's all in good humour there's no bloodshed, and everything is handled light heartedly.

Monkey Island: looking at each of the original trilogy separately, the first one (The Secret of Monkey Island) tells the tale of Guybrush Threepwood, who arrives on Mle Island with a burning desire to be a pirate. After completing a set of trials that will supposedly confirm his pirate status, the woman he loves (Governor Marley) is kidnapped by the ghost pirate LeChuck, who's also in love with the governor. Guybrush has to find a ship and a crew, and give chase to the fabled Monkey Island in an attempt to thwart LeChuck's plans.

In the sequel, LeChuck's Revenge, Guybrush has become a fully-fledged pirate. He hears stories of a fabulous treasure called Big Whoop and vows to find it. His quest for the map to the treasure leads him across the entire Caribbean, once again crossing paths with Governor Marley. Unfortunately for him, LeChuck has been resurrected and is after revenge he's no longer after Marley, he wants Threepwood.

The third game, The Curse of Monkey Island continues directly from the end of game two. Guybrush has escaped from the nightmare world LeChuck left him in, only to run into him again almost immediately. Luckily for him, the zombie pirate LeChuck accidentally blows himself up and Guybrush is able to escape, and propose to Elaine. Unfortunately for him, the ring he stole from LeChuck is cursed and Elaine is turned into a golden statue. Guybrush finds himself once again on a quest, this time to find a fabulous diamond but what he doesn't know is that LeChuck is back again, and is madder than ever.

Pirates of the Caribbean: The Curse of the Black Pearl: when Jack Sparrow arrives in Port Royal, he needs a ship in order to travel to Tortuga. There, he'll get a crew and chase the Black Pearl, his former ship which was taken from him in a mutiny. However, he is arrested almost immediately and thrown in jail. Meanwhile, the crew who stole his ship have been placed under an Aztec curse they are now human to the eye in sunlight, but rotting skeletons by night. They are looking for gold coins that will reverse the curse, and Elizabeth Swann has the last one. She is the daughter of the governor of Port Royal, and unknowingly unleashes a signal that alerts the pirates to the presence of the coin. That night, the Black Pearl arrives in Port Royal and Barbossas crew kidnap Elizabeth. Her two potential suitors, Will Turner (a blacksmith) and Commodore Norrington (the head of the navy presence in the region) both want to find her, but have conflicting plans. So, Turner helps Sparrow escape from prison in exchange for helping him find Elizabeth. What Turner doesn't know is that the pirates need his blood, and not Elizabeth's as they presume. Sparrow plans to use this information to barter for the return of his ship, as they give chase to the dreaded Isla De Muerta...

As you can see, there are several similarities between the plots of each story. The first, and most significant, is the world created by Disney in the original ride. The importance of this is that this is the world that appealed to Ron Gilbert, and was subsequently re-created in his games. The pirates in this world aren't criminals as such just loveable rogues. This is the element that sets Monkey Island apart from traditional pirate tales there is no murder or rape, or even swearing. This tradition continues through to tcotbp, where although Barbossa and his crew are more typically evil, the main pirate, Jack Sparrow, is handled more light-heartedly. He doesn't swear, nor rape Elizabeth when given a clear chance when they are marooned together. He does steal, in the same way that Threepwood walks around the Caribbean light-fingering almost every item he sees, and he does murder someone, but in the circumstances the motive is fairly clear. All in all, there are many times when Sparrow chooses a course of action that is less evil and more fair most notably, he doesn't want to kill Will Turner in a fight near the start, as he hasn't really given him a reason to so he tries reasoning with him instead of shooting him.

One similarity between mi and tcotbp is between the quests of the two heroes. Guybrush Threepwood has to find a ship and crew, and follow the evil pirate to an island that no-one believes exists. Similarly, Jack Sparrow has to find a ship and a crew, and also has to follow the evil pirate to an island that no-one believes exists. The methods in which they obtain the ship and the crew are different, but that is purely down to the medium the story is presented in. A movie where the hero had to borrow money from a shopkeeper in order to afford a ship would not only seem strange (the hero is a pirate, after all) but it would seem tedious, and slow the pace down. Similarly, in a point and click adventure game the theft of a galleon would have to be seen as a cut-scene, thereby reducing user interactivity and shortening the length of the play-time. That said, this similarity doesn't necessarily mean that tcotbp has copied from mi, just that they are similar. It is equally likely that it is merely a co-incidence. Monkey Island cannot be credited with the invention of the plot device in which the hero chases after the bad guy in order to get something back, as hundreds of stories use this the majority of them told before 1990. The reason for the co-incidence most likely stems from the fact that they are both pirate stories. If it were set in space, the ship would become a spacecraft and the hidden island would become a planet it's just the nature of the story and its setting.

Another similarity is also found in the quests of the heroes. In the second mi game, Guybrush hears stories of a fabulous treasure of un-equalled value, and vows to find it. From what we learn in back-story in tcotbp told by Barbossa, Sparrow and his crew heard tell of the Aztec treasure and tried to find it. Similarly, both treasures had hidden surprises in the case of Big Whoop, (depending on which theory you believe) it was either a magical trap, in which Guybrush was turned into a child and trapped in a Carnival of the damned' or a portal into another dimension reality. In tcotbp the treasure was vast, but by removing it from the chest that contained it you became cursed. It's fair to say that both treasures were misleading. But again, is this a significant coincidence, or simply that a coincidence? When I tried to think of other stories in which a treasure, or something that is prized actually turns out to be bad (or not what it seems) there were several. When it comes down to it, it's a simple plot device that has been used hundreds of times in essence, a trap. You are tricked into believing one thing, when in fact the reality is anything but. In Total Recall, Arnold Schwarzeneggers character finds out he isn't who he thinks he is. He travels to Mars where he has been told he is a rebel, fighting for liberation on the planet. What later transpires is that he is in fact a government spy, who's been tricked into thinking he is a rebel in order to bring the rebellion down from the inside. This is, essentially, the same plot device. Schwarzenegger believes he is one of the good guys, but he was merely tricked and the truth is the direct opposite in mi Guybrush believes Big Whoop is a treasure, but he was tricked and the truth, again, is different. When placed in these terms, a similarity between Big Whoop and the Aztec treasure doesn't seem to be anything more than a coincidence.

The third real plot similarity lies in the curse. Both the third mi game and tcotbp feature the word curse' in the title, and both curses revolve around wealth. In The Curse of Monkey Island, the curse is triggered by wearing a fabulous diamond ring. In tcotbp, taking some of the treasure from the chest triggers the curse. The underlying theme here is age old the irony of obtaining something so awesome, yet only superficially valuable (the moral is always the same; love is the only real treasure, commercial value means nothing) yet not being able to use it. The pirates in tcotbp have a fabulous stash of ancient golden coins, but they cannot spend any of them without becoming an un-dead skeleton, and in mi Guybrush gives Elaine a ring of such size and beauty that it's unmatched, yet she cannot actually wear the ring without becoming a golden statue. Both treasures have adverse effects on you, whilst remaining outwardly desirable. Interestingly, in the case of mi, the curse makes the wearer of the ring more valuable than the ring itself, yet totally worthless to the wearer. Is this another co-incidence, or a significant similarity? Well, the story that springs to mind most immediately is the Greek myth of King Midas. Not only does this story also revolve around gold, it's also a cautionary tale warning against greed. King Midas loves gold so much that when he receives a wish, he wishes that everything he touches turned to gold. However, Midas only succeeds in turning his son into a golden statue, and he realises how useless gold really is. With this in mind, this co-incidence must also be regarded as nothing more than that a co-incidence.

I noticed on LucasForums that some people think that some of the characters in tcotbp are based on characters found in mi. This will be assessed below.

-Jack Sparrow: well, for a start we know from interviews that Johnny Depp based his portrayal of Jack Sparrow on two people: Keith Richards and Pepe Le Pew. The former is an English rock star, and the latter is a leering cartoon skunk neither of which bares any resemblance to the main stars of the mi games. I don't think that any of the smaller characters in the mi games are memorable or, indeed, unique enough to actually inspire another character. That means that if a character in tcotbp is inspired by a mi character, it's more likely to be Guybrush, Elaine, LeChuck, Largo or Stan. The only way to assess Jack Sparrow is to remove the Depp element. Johnny Depp crafted a truly unique character, but he didn't create the character. This means that the scriptwriter could have been inspired by a mi character, but the similarity was lost when Depp interpreted the character.

On paper, Sparrow is a simple pirate he is only looking out for number one. He only helps people if there is something in it for him, and he likes to maintain a certain mystery about his character. For example, no-one knows exactly how Sparrow escaped from the island he was abandoned on, but he likes to entertain fantastic stories that explain it, as they make him sound more enigmatic and enhance his reputation. In reality, he hitched a ride on a passing ship, but the story he tells Mr. Gibbs is that he makes a raft from sea turtles he catches with rope hewn from the hair growing on his back. This is about the only similarity I can see between Sparrow and Threepwood in the second mi game, Guybrush enjoys to exaggerate the truth about what really happened when he killed LeChuck, right from the start of the game. However, to say that Sparrow was inspired by Guybrush is far fetched indeed. Hundreds of characters from all kinds of movies have been known to lie about their past in order to create a reputation for themselves. Just one I can think of from the top of my head is Venkman, in Ghostbusters. During the first ghost removal, at the hotel, the ghostbusters are confused and inefficient, and as a result the hotel is badly damaged. However, during the press conference outside the hotel he maintains that they were professional and that catching the ghost was easy. This ensures the good reputation of the ghostbusters, even though it isn't entirely true.

-Barbossa: as Barbossa is the head of the evil pirates in tcotbp, the only character in the mi games that could have remotely inspired him is LeChuck. If that was as far as the similarity went I would say it is merely a coincidence. However, the fact is that they are both evil pirate captains, and they are both, essentially, dead. It's the un-dead aspect that makes this connection interesting. Physically, the performance given by Geoffrey Rush doesn't remind me of LeChuck at all, but on paper there are several similarities. I already mentioned the un-dead aspect, but there is also the fact that they sail ghostly ships and hide out under a hidden island. Both ships LeChuck uses in The Secret of Monkey Island and The Curse of Monkey Island have the same ragged sails seen on the Black Pearl in tcotbp, as seen in this screenshot. They also both moor their ships underneath an island that no-one can find only, LeChucks is in lava, and Barbossas is not. These seem to be the most significant similarities I've uncovered so far, but the fact is that they are similarities between the ship, and the location not the actual character. This leads me to believe that its just another co-incidence, but if I had to pick one thing that I thought was definitely inspired by mi I would pick this.

-Elizabeth Swann: as with Barbossa, there is only really one character that could have inspired Elizabeth from the mi games Elaine Marley. Elizabeth Swann is the governor's daughter, whereas Elaine Marley is the governor. Both are strong willed woman, and they both like pirates or, at least don't despise them. These are surely co-incidences though Elaine Marley isn't the first strong willed woman by a long shot Marian Ravenwood in Raiders of the Lost Ark is another obvious one. The fact that Elizabeth Swann is the governors daughter is because the character has to be very upper class, and that is about the most upper class you can get in the setting of the film. Also, in mi Elaine manages to escape herself, but in tcotbp Elizabeth needs to be rescued. Overall, the connections between Elizabeth and Elaine are loose at best.

-Will Turner: Orlando Blooms role is as the hero of the story. He is the law abider who joins forces with the more dodgy Jack Sparrow. This limits the number of resemblances he can have to a mi character, as all the main characters are pirates. However, he does share one important trait with Guybrush they both go out of their way and break the law to save a woman who they aren't actually romantically involved with. Turner loves Elizabeth, but hasn't told her, and Guybrush loves Elaine but hasn't been able to get a word out when talking to her. This doesn't mean that Will Turner was inspired by Guybrush though, especially as when it comes down to it, one of the first things Guybrush says is I want to be a pirate whereas Turner (initially) hates pirates. The characters are very different, and the one similarity is coincidental.

The other characters have much smaller roles. Norrington can't be based on anyone from mi because there simply aren't any characters in mi that fill the same role as him. There are no law-keepers in the series, or navy people. There are no second-in-command pirates in tcotbp that resemble Largo LaGrande, and the two comic relief pirates could only be accused of being inspired by the two pirates in The Curse of Monkey Island who find LeChucks boots and bring him back to life in demon form. If anyone seriously believed that they were inspired by those two pirates though, they would have to be insane. It would be unfair to the scriptwriters to suggest that the two fully thought out characters in the movie were inspired by two tiny characters in a computer game.

By events' I mean, things that happen in tcotbp that also happen in mi. The most striking and obvious of these is the jail scene.

The jail scene is the only event that undisputedly occurs in the ride, the games and the movie. As keeping with the tone of the ride, in potc the scene is played for laughs the pirates are locked up and the jailers are presumably off having some fun, whilst the dog is left to guard the cell. In mi, the scene is extended further to meet the criteria of an adventure game ie, there is a workable puzzle for the player to solve in order to escape. While keeping the guard dog / keys theme, LeChucks Revenge introduces a second cell to the scene, with a dead skeleton in it. While no doubt there to help fill up the screen, the skeleton is, of course, a vital part of the puzzle. In tcotbp the scene is extended still further the all important dog, of course, is still there, as is the second cell introduced in mi. This time, the second cell is populated with living people, and reminiscent of the ride scene they all work together to try and get the key from the dog. Later, the prisoners escape after a cannonball blasts a hole in the wall, and Sparrow is left in the second cell here, he also tries to tempt the dog with a bone.

It's a simple idea for a scene, and the most noticeable difference between each version is that in both potc and tcotbp, no-one escapes by getting the key from the dog. In potc, no-one is seen to escape at all, whereas in tcotbp everyone escapes at some point the prisoners in cell one climb through the hole in the wall, and Sparrow escapes when Turner rips the door away. This leaves Guybrush as the only person who has ever been placed in this scene, and escaped by himself, using a bone to get the key from the dog. While this is clearly the most obvious similarity between mi and tcotbp Gilbert has never denied the scene was put in the game as an homage to the ride that inspired the game the simple fact is that both mi and tcotbp used the scene as an homage to the ride and not that tcotbp was inspired by mi. Yes, both the games and the movie have a scene that is undeniably the same but both borrowed the scene from another source - the ride.

Another similar event is that in both mi and tcotbp the evil pirates come into port and kidnap the heroine. In mi we don't actually see the kidnapping Guybrush returns to town and we simply see the ship sailing away. From what we gather in the town, at the sight of the ship everyone fled the town and hid, and LeChuck came ashore and kidnapped the governor. There was no bloodshed, and LeChuck wasn't interesting in pillaging he only wanted his bride-to-be. In tcotbp, we actually see the kidnapping. The pirates come into port cannons blazing, as it were, attacking the town and the townsfolk and generally causing havoc. Two of the pirates find Elizabeth and taker her aboard the ship.

The problem with this similarity is that there are too many differences for it to be truly considered an influence. In mi the pirates come for one specific purpose the governor. In tcotbp they also come for one purpose the golden coin. The fact that they kidnap Elizabeth is more of a comedy of errors than a thought out plan the pirates would have had no use for her, so would have either killed her or left her in the mansion. However, as she fears for her life she calls into play the parlais, and the pirates are left with no choice but to take her to the captain. Barbossa would surely have had no qualms about killing her, or even taking her back to his lair and letting his crew have their wicked way with her (after breaking the curse) but when he asks her name she gives Turners name (presumably so that they won't know she's the governors daughter she says she is a maid in the household, and Turner is probably the only person in the town she knows who isn't upper-class if she had said Elizabeth Norrington the pirates may have kept her as the wife of the Commodore would be a useful ransom demand) and this leads Barbossa to believe she is the missing person they need to break the curse. It is possible that the kidnapping scenario was inspired by mi and simply expanded for the movie, but this is highly unlikely. There are hundreds of kidnap stories in the world, and the only reason the mi one stands out is because they're both about pirates.

If the islands involved in each story can be called events', then here lies another similarity. In mi the island is the titular Monkey Island, which is little more than a myth in most eyes. In tcotbp the island is the Isla De Muerta, (island of death) which isn't part of the common vernacular like Monkey Island (that is, in the mi games everyone knows about Monkey Island yet no-one really believes in it, but in the movie not everyone knows that the Isla de Muerta exists, so not everyone has an opinion) but according to Sparrow can't be found unless you already know where it is indeed, Sparrow himself uses a compass that he presumably stole to find the island. The main similarity here is that both evil pirate captains have not only found the island, but have also moored their ships underneath it and then, the heroes also battle the odds to follow them there. When I put it like that, it seems that we've finally found a rock-solid similarity between mi and tcotbp, but I don't think this is the case. Yes, both islands are mysterious and hidden, and yes both evil pirates live there, and yes both heroes set sail to the island after them but: this seems more like a coincidence and a common plot device. Basically, this is a chase between the good guys and the bad guys the good guys are chasing the bad guys to get something back. That is the plot of hundreds of movies, from Star Wars to The Goonies, and the only reason the similarity seems so close is again due to the setting of the story. It's a pirate movie that means transport is ships, and bad guys are pirates. If mi was retold but set in space, it wouldn't nearly resemble tcotbp as much, because LeChuck wouldn't be a pirate, and Monkey Island wouldn't be an island. This similarity must also be chalked up as mere coincidence.

The only other aspect of the movie I can think to analyse in comparison to the games is the music. This is about the only aspect of each that seems to be totally original. The original ride has the Yo-ho yo-ho a pirates life for me song as its theme. This is a typical sea shanty, a fast moving jig. You could listen to it with no point of reference and it wouldn't take you long to associate it with the sea.

Monkey Island has an amazing variety of music from throughout the series, and while later tracks such as the Barbery Coast present more of the standard sea music fare more akin to the style of music potc opted for, the main theme itself is totally different to the theme of the ride. With its familiar slow start, and then the explosion as the real theme kicks in, the reggae roots Michael Land has planted the series in (it is set in the Caribbean) keeps the tune sounding different to the potc one, whilst still maintaining a feel of the sea.

There are, of course, those who would say that A Pirate I was Meant to Be is an homage to A Pirates Life For Me, and in my opinion it's 50:50 it could be an homage, or it could be a coincidence. One thing is for certain a lot more work went into that song for it to be a simple homage the creative element was out in force.

Pirates of the Caribbean: The Curse of the Black Pearl has had the most money spent on it out of the three projects, and this is evident from the music alone. Obviously, the quality of the recordings is far higher than for the games and the ride (which was made in the 60's) but the style is also totally different. While we have lost Alan Silvestri's score thanks to Mr. Bruckheimer, Klaus Badelt has crafted a rich and exciting score that has turned its nose up at the style of sea shanties and opted for all out swashbuckling.

All three soundtracks can be heard in the preview mp3 playing in the order: potc, mi, tcotbp.

So, now we come to it: is Pirates of the Caribbean: The Curse of the Black Pearl influenced by the Monkey Island games? The answer I must come to is simply no'. The similarities that do exist seem to be there purely because of an influence from Pirates of the Caribbean (the ride) or through shared plot devices that have been used in hundreds of stories since storytelling began. The slight similarities that do seem to be something more than this I put down partly to the fact that both stories are set in essentially the same light-hearted pirate world, and partly to wishful thinking the simple fact is, we want a Monkey Island movie, and as it's not looking like we're going to get one, so we're claiming Pirates of the Caribbean as our own. I don't think its fair on the filmmakers to try and say that they have ripped-off the Monkey Island games; they have produced a story good enough to be judged on its own merits and it has exceeded all expectations.

I admit, before I saw this film I had hoped for Monkey Island: The Movie and to a certain degree I expected it. What I got was a story that surpassed the games in many ways, and stood tall on its own achievements.

One final note Disney are already working on a sequel to this movie, and it's a known fact that George Lucas was very interested in this project when Bruckheimer came to ILM for post-production effects is it too hard to imagine Pirates of the Caribbean: The Secret of Monkey Island?

Nah, just kidding!


Thanks to Gabez for motivation and images. If anyone did manage to read through it all, you deserve a pat on the back.

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Comment from Kroms

This comment was deleted by the user.

Comment from Zephros

"This is about the only aspect of each that seems to be totally original."
I'm sorry that you think so. Badelt's "score" is nothing but a rehash of "The Rock" and "Gladiator" and it's not really surprising considering Badelt didn't compose the entire score, a lot of it was done by Hans Zimmer's Media Ventures company. I hate to come on and say that but I feel the scores for the Monkey Island games are truly classic and wonderful. I have no doubt that Alan Silvestri would have carried on this tradition of Pirate music (whether intentionally like MI or not) but it seems Bruckheimer decided to kick him off because he didn't want flutes in the music. Correct me if I'm wrong, but doesn't that seem a little petty? Besides, look at the great Pirate scores: Monkey Island, Cutthroat Island, Hook, Peter Pan... All of them had grand orchestral scores (with the exception of Monkey Island, but the flutes are still present) and all of them worked well (which is, I suppose a matter of opinion).

I feel like a huge loser now, for commenting on such a petty thing. Still, a great article for a great movie (apart from said score), a series of exceptional games and a ride I've never been on.

Comment from reprobate

it happens all the time - in fact it's what Disney do best - i bet there're a few kids out there who think Cinderella and Snow White are Disney stories...i love the idea of a MI film...dunno if POTC is it tho....Johnny Depp is a well fit pirate ;^) but Guybrush (1+2) would still kick his arse in ANY situation!

Comment from LucasTones

If there was any legal action, Disney would win. They get pretty nasty in the courts, and Monkey Island was based on their ride.

Comment from Yodus

I enjoyed Pirates of the Caribbean very much, I'm constantly watching the DVD. However indeed some aspects of the film do resemble some aspects in the Monkey Island games. Especially the jail scene from LCR, however I myself have been on the ride and seen the jail scene so it's hardly new. Also Elizabeth Swan as the Governor's daughter, not totally orginal. Big Whoop also has the cursed treasure also grants immortality just as the same as the Tresure of Cortez in the film. However I do agree on the Verdict, but I will always think of Monkey Island when I watch the film in future.

Comment from MurraysWife

I really liked taht Movie..... best scene in my opinion (and soooooo related to MI2!!!) is where Sparrow uses the Bone to get the cell-key from the dog! Also nice is the fact, that the kidnapped girl is the governeur's daughter. When I first saw the movie I immediately thought that the writer must be one of the biggest MI-fans!!! I think that movie really is a tribute to Monkey Island and I love it! I'm just sad that Murray is never really mentioned... :-)

Comment from balert

what did you expect from a pirate move? of coarse it is going to be a little like monkey island. monkey island is famouse!

Comment from Lucifer

Its Great that so much pirate stuff is out there now leave me alone..i have grog to drink

Comment from muhahaha

well personally after i saw the film i sort of thought there were similarites, like the scene writer had played the games or something, but not alot. oh and i thought mr.bloom(or mr. turner)looked a tiny bit like mr. threepwood in the 2nd one but had the clothes of him in the 1st. but maybe it's just me

Comment from Strutter


Comment from Cutthrush

The feel and the nautical atmosphere of the movie, I will say is quite similar to MI and has the same basic humour and wit while reaching the audience fully. I'd say it is like MI is that respect.

Comment from Nickname

This comment was deleted by the user.

Comment from Nickname

Thanks Remi0

Comment from dubsdj

When I first saw the film advertised in the cinema I didn't even assosiate it with one of my favourite games of all time monkey island.
But when I went to see the film I came out of the cinema after the film and said "Monkey island" because it shares a lot of similar features. I think it is a great thing and I'm glad that it relates to monkey island a bit, makes it more interesting to see.

Comment from Nickname

Anyone notice all the chickens in the town after the PIrate attack? Instantly reminded me of Puerto Pollo. Aside, anyone have the soundbite of Guybrush replying to Blondebeard in spanish? Pure Gold!

Comment from Cutthrush

Warm and fuzzy eh??? no comment! It is one great film, it's all the extras i'm looking forward to when it comes out on dvd.
As for Sparrows entrance, I think it's similar to Guybrushes arrival at the begining of MI3, both characters, you question how they got there, there is an element of mystery to their previous location. Like Sparrow, Guybrush is more lucky than skillfull, accidental hero and all that. And the sword fight, the typical 'throw insults at each other' scenario played in here quite nicely, this was based more so on all sword fights in films though. MI applied this to gameplay.

Comment from LucasTones

My favourite parts of the movie are actually parts that are totally unrelated to Monkey Island in any way. Mainly, Sparrows entrance on his sinking ship, Sparrows initial escape after saving Elizabeth, and the final swordfight. Although, I admit, when I watched the movie the first time I thought that the bridge sparrow runs across when being chased by the navy guys looks just like the one next to the prison on Phatt island. Maybe it was just me.

Comment from Anomonous Guy

oh okey dokey then :)
I agree, i actually loved the fact that it was similar to Monkey Island... It just made me feel all warm and fuzzy inside...

Comment from Cutthrush

That I read of course, all I am saying is that it wouldn't matter if they had copied, it's more of a compliment

Comment from Anomonous Guy

erm, did u actually read the article cutthrush?
The article says that lucastones also thinks that the film didnt steal the stuff, just used similar ideas because they r both related to the ride...

Comment from Cutthrush

Very interesting, but perhaps a bit presumptuous. I don

Comment from scabb

You could've mentioned the Total Recall spoilers too :~~

Comment from Imladhrim

And Mr. Bloom even looks somewhat like the Guybrush in Secret of Monkey Island :D

Comment from Anomonous Guy

Well that was a good read :) and i see now there are pictures lol...
I would agree with u, the game and movie are not based on each other, it is just thatr the ideas are similar, and the film reminded me alot of monkey island mainly for the light-hearted pirate theme and comedy...
This film is definately the most memorable i have seen in a long time!
Great article :)

Comment from LucasTones

I made about 400Mb of comparison pictures, then got scared at the way Gabez and Remi were reacting to the article and hid them.

Comment from MrManager

Look at the "Article Images" in the right menu.

Comment from Anomonous Guy

What, no pictures?? :D

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