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Spoiler! Post-credits Scene from POTC:AWE

28 May

Did you leave the theater before the credits were over, at Pirates of the Caribbean: At World’s End? Quick, go here and watch the scene that played at the very end, when a bunch of us were already in the lobby.

In case the video disappears (quite likely, given copyright issues), here’s a summary from Wikipedia:

In a post-credits scene set ten years later, Will reunites with Elizabeth and their son. As the Dutchman appears, it is accompanied by a green flash.

Opening Night of Pirates of the Caribbean: At Worlds’ End

25 May

Do I deserve a rap on the knuckles with a wooden ruler? Or the Parent of the Year Award? I dunno which, but I can tell you it was worth it to keep my ten-year-old son up waaaaay past his bedtime for last night’s 8:00 p.m. showing of Pirates of the Caribbean: At Worlds’ End.

AWE first show in BostonHad we not seen the first show, we might not have seen so many pirates decked out in their finest regalia! Curse my poor camera phone . . . lots of pirates kindly let me take their pictures, but only one picture came out even vaguely viewable. Thank you, anonymous young pirates! We certainly couldn’t have hoped for a better audience to watch the film with.

[MAJOR spoilers from this point on, proceed at your own risk.] I’d been keeping my expectations low, as I was disappointed in Dead Man’s Chest. And I was pleasantly surprised. The movie doesn’t quite rise to the level of Curse of the Black Pearl, but it takes full advantage of the depth of key characters, and take them to the next level. In many ways this is Keira Knightley’s movie, as she not only ascends to Pirate King, but also marries her longtime sweetheart in the funniest, most romantic sequence in the film. And of course Johnny Depp’s Jack Sparrow is always brilliant. But this time Orlando Bloom finally becomes the gritty, ruthless pirate Elizabeth has longed for, and Geoffrey Rush plays a surprisingly key role as the pivot for many of the complicated relationships in the film. Sadly, Chow Yun Fat dies far too soon. But Keith Richards’ brief cameo is spot-on, and exactly the right dose.

There’s a very nice little nod to the POTC ride, just as you’re entering Worlds’ End. I’m sure there were plenty more ride references in there, but not as readily apparent as those in the earlier films. Anybody spot any Hidden Mickeys?

I was surprised and delighted by the open (some might say heavy-handed) political commentary in the film. The chilling opening sequence reads like a membership solicitation from the American Civil Liberties Union. And when the pirates begin to sing their song of unity and protest, I could almost imagine them breaking into The Internationale. Really quite heartwarming for a leftie like myself.

And of course, the movie resolves the major themes of the POTC trilogy, while setting the stage quite effectively for POTC 4 (Jim Hill mentioned on this week’s Magical Definition Podcast that this is slated for release in 2010 or 2011, pending Johnny Depp’s availability, and if you’re a POTC fan you really wanna listen to that podcast for Hill’s indepth comments on POTC).

But I’ll confess, I’m not too eager yet for the next POTC. The franchise has declined a bit in coherence of narrative structure, and I’d like to see the producers have a little breathing room before conceptualizing Jack’s next adventure. And even with the excellent special effects in POTC: AWE, who knows what technical advances might mean for the next time around? Let’s give these characters a rest, and come back to them fresh a good while down the road.

Keith Richards at Pirates of the Caribbean 3 Premiere

21 May

According to DIS News, Keith Richards was at the May 21 Disneyland premiere of Pirates of the Caribbean: At Worlds’ End:

[Johnny Depp’s] Jack Sparrow muse and “World’s End” scene-stealer Keith Richards showed up sporting an emerging, curiously challenged mustache.

Did he see himself in Depp’s notoriously affected performance?

“Yeah, a little bit,” chuckled the Rolling Stones guitarist.

This despite earlier reports that Keith Richards would participate in no further promotions for POTC: AWE, due to his now-infamous comments about inappropriate disposal of his late father’s ashes.

Chow Yun Fat Visits Hong Kong Disneyland for Pirate Takeover

7 May

PRN Newswire just sent out a press release about Chow Yun Fat’s recent trip to Hong Kong Disneyland (all pictures and quoted text here copyright PRN Newswire).


Chow Yun Fat, who plays the pirate Sao Feng in the upcoming movie Pirates of the Caribbean 3: At World’s End, visited Hong Kong Disneyland to experience the totally new Pirate Takeover. Chow and his wife took photos with Pirate Mickey, Goofy and Pluto. From May 4 to June 30, 2007, Adventureland will be transformed into Pirateland and guests will have a totally immersive and interactive fresh new experience at Pirate Takeover!

Oh. My. God. Pirate Takeover! And, um, is it just me or does that sound just a tad more adult than they might have intended?

How badly do I want replicas of the flags they’re flying over the bridge? (Come to think of it, how badly do I want to visit Hong Kong Disneyland? Well, apparently not badly enough to have booked flights or anything, but give a girl a break, there’s only so many frequent flier miles in my account!)


In Adventureland, now Pirateland, flanked by two rowdy pirates, Chow Yun Fat and his wife prepared to hop on board the Jungle River Cruise, Pirate Takeover! to discover the traces left by pirates along the exciting journey. From May 4 to June 30, 2007, Adventureland will be transformed into Pirateland and guests will have a totally immersive and interactive fresh new experience at Pirate Takeover!

Okay, I’m not much of a Jungle Cruise fan to begin with. Racist stereotypes, anyone? Poorly updated animatronics? But a good Skipper can make the ride more than worthwhile. Dress that skipper up in pirate garb and you might just get me to ride again.


Chow Yun Fat smiled delightfully as he discovered the movie props he had used from the blockbuster Pirates of the Caribbean 3: At World’s End, which Captain Jack Sparrow had nicely agreed to showcase at Professor Porter’s Trading Post. From May 4 to June 30, 2007, Adventureland will be transformed into Pirateland and guests will have a totally immersive and interactive fresh new experience at Pirate Takeover!

Captain Jack Sparrow nicely agreeing to anything? Hold your tongue, mister. Nobody talks about Captain Jack that way.


Since filming Pirates of the Caribbean 3 : At World’s End, it was the first time that Chow Yun Fat met up again with Captain Jack Sparrow at Pirateland, Hong Kong Disneyland! From May 4 to June 30, 2007, Adventureland will be transformed into Pirateland and guests will have a totally immersive and interactive fresh new experience at Pirate Takeover!.

Tortuga Restaurant at Walt Disney World?

2 May

MouseExtra points us to a Screamscape post about a possible Tortuga-themed restaurant at Walt Disney World’s Magic Kingdom. And I, for one, would be booking my ADRs ASAP.

If they do it right, it would be great. As MouseExtra suggests, this could be like Cinderella’s Royal Table, but for those of us who prefer swordplay and explosives to glass slippers. It wouldn’t be enough to go half-way. Think of the Blue Bayou at Disneyland (pictured at left), my absolute favorite Disney restaurant worldwide. Rough up the decor a bit around the edges. Maybe a few audio-animatronic pirates on the balconies? Borrow their menu, too — Disney’s corporate stragegy is all about leveraging synergies right? Re-purposing existing properties? Mmm, I’m hungry for that creme brulee already.

Pirates of the Caribbean, Ratatouille on Disney xD

2 May

Disney Insider today includes a link to a “behind the scenes” video plugging Pirates of the Caribbean: At World’s End, as part of the Disney xD beta web site. And as of May 1, there’s a 9-minute clip from Ratatouille available as well, which is follwed by an especially cool short on the modeling under the animation. Gotta love it when the software engineers get their day in the spotlight! Go go code monkeys!

Disney xD beta is reasonably good at delivering good quality, relatively high-resolution video. Given that I’ve been on the couch watching back episodes of Lost on’s online video viewer (curse you, bronchitis!!), I can’t help but compare the two (and of course, the fact that both sites are coming out of the same parent company invites comparison anyway). ABC lets you go full-screen, with whatever loss of image quality results, while Disney xD seems to be constraining the image size to the actual pixels of the video, giving you better quality images but perhaps not as large an image as you’d prefer. And maybe it’s not a coincidence that this means Disney xD still has plenty of room on your screen for ads. today implies that the Ratatouille clip might not be viewable on Disney xD by those outside the US, and provided the link to this YouTube (which sadly does not include the second clip about the awesomeness of software engineers):

I was able to find the POTC behind-the-scenes video there as well:

Pirate Crocs: Threat or Menace?

27 Apr

I noticed today that Pirates Crocs are now available. Surely this means that the Jolly Roger has forever lost its appeal to urban hipsters. And perhaps it’s even a sign of the apocalypse.

I don’t know what it is about Crocs. I find myself craving a pair for no apparent reason. Perhaps it’s because my son loves his so much. (More proof that I’m really a thirteen-year-old boy at heart.) Perhaps it’s because people rave on about Crocs on one of my favorite message boards, posting links whenever they’ve gone on sale anywhere.

But if you don’t like Crocs, there’s a place for you too: I Hate Crocs Dot Com. From their “Better Living Through Abstinence” page:

It’s not too late to change.

Maybe you’re a person who’s worn crocs or continues to wear crocs now. Maybe you know somebody who can’t leave their house without strapping the oft-punctured plastic devils to their feet. Maybe you’ve even been tempted by their shiny, synthetic glare – but you can save yourself.

Simply follow the steps below for a new, tasteful existence:

1) Decide to say no to them. It’s harder than it sounds, I know, but you can stop. You just need the willpower and a push in the right direction. Talk to a friend or counselor and unless they’ve been enslaved as well, they can help.

2) Cut them up If you can’t seem to help yourself, take the garden shears to them. If no garden shears are available (or if you’re not allowed to use them anymore due to state law) please consult a steak knife, chainsaw or power drill.

3) Keep them to yourself. For God’s sake, if you’re going to wear them, at least spare the children. They’re too young to know any better so please, don’t inflict your pain on them. Children wearing crocs is the next step in de-evolution.

4) Put them away, never speak of them and pretend that you weren’t involved. Hey, it’s working for everybody who wore Zubaz. Get a head start on avoiding future humiliation. Denial is the first step to freedom.

My son’s comment? “If it becomes a big flop, just remember, you don’t see your feet in school pictures.”

And y’know, I’ve always been a big fan of de-evolution myself. Are we not men? Jocko homo.

We Are Devo

YouTube Disney Roundup

27 Apr

I’ve been stuck at home sick with bronchitis for the last couple days, and all I can say is thank goodness for the interweb. It’s keeping me quite amused while I wait for the antibiotics to kick in. Not only have I almost caught up on Lost, but there’s an endless stream of mindless (and otherwise) entertainment available on YouTube.

A few of my favorites:

What, Keith Richards Not Family Friendly?

5 Apr

Hard to believe Disney didn’t know what they were getting themselves into when they hired Keith Richards! But yes, they’ve decided that Keith Richards shouldn’t do any PR work for Pirates of the Caribbean: At Worlds’ End. Funny thing, you go talking about snorting cocaine mixed with your dad’s ashes and everybody gets all worked up.

Strange Keith Richards Quote of the Day

3 Apr

Weird quote of the day, from Jack Sparrow’s dad.

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