A lot or a little?
The parents' guide to what's in this movie.
What parents need to know
Parents need to know that Pirates of the Caribbean: At World's End is the third installment of the Pirates franchise. It's packed with more death, action, and violence than most superhero flicks -- from the grim opening sequence in which Caribbean civilians (including a young boy) are led to the gallows to the climactic swashbuckling showdown. Since it's nearly three hours long, younger kids (or those with short attention spans) may not go the distance. And with so many double crosses and betrayals, the plot may even be confusing for adults. That said, thanks to Disney's ubiquitous merchandising and advertising campaigns, even 5-year-olds know who Captain Jack Sparrow is, so chances are your youngest kids will want to see it. But if they do, be prepared for them to wake up with nightmares.
What's the story?
Captain Jack (Johnny Depp) is back IN PIRATES OF THE CARIBBEAN: AT WORLD'S END, living in the hallucinatory limbo of Davy Jones' Locker. While he's busy seeing imaginary clones of himself, Elizabeth Swann (Keira Knightley), Will Turner (Orlando Bloom), and resurrected Captain Barbossa (Geoffrey Rush) travel to the Singapore. Their goal is to enlist pirate lord Sao Feng (Chow Yun-Fat) to help save Jack and join his fellow captains against the British, who are in control of Davy Jones (Bill Nighy) and his Flying Dutchman crew. But that's just the beginning -- basically, everyone's out for revenge. Will must free his father, Bootstrap Bill (Stellan Skarsgard), from Davy's cursed ship; Elizabeth finds herself an avenging pirate captain; and Barbossa and the mysterious Tia Dalma (Naomie Harris) are also up to no good. But never fear, matey: This is a Jerry Bruckheimer action flick, so everything turns up (mostly) roses. Some major characters die, disintegrate, or what have you, and others are revived. No one quite gets a perfectly happy ending, but at least Keith Richards shows up for a few minutes as Jack's hard-scrabble pirate pop. That tiny bit of perfect casting alone is worth the cost of the ticket.
Is it any good?
Even though this series' third and supposedly final adventure is more action-packed than the first two sagas, it's still overlong and bewildering. There's no denying that the billion-dollar Pirates of the Caribbean franchise is wildly entertaining. But Pirates of the Caribbean: At World's End has so many story developments and double-crossing betrayals that the confusing plot merits an encyclopedic fansite. Even hardcore fans of whodunit mysteries will be puzzled by the number of twists and turns.
Talk to your kids about ...
Families can talk about what made kids want to see Pirates of the Caribbean: At World's End -- the story or all the product and toy tie-ins. Do kids want something because Captain Jack is connected to it? And does the movie live up to all the hype?
Why is Jack such an appealing character?
Families can also discuss the Pirates franchise as a whole. Do you think there should be a fourth movie or is this one a good finale? Which movie do you like best, and why?
- In theaters: May 24, 2007
- On DVD or streaming: December 4, 2007
- Cast: Johnny Depp, Keira Knightley, Orlando Bloom
- Director: Gore Verbinski
- Studio: Buena Vista
- Genre: Action/Adventure
- Run time: 168 minutes
- MPAA rating: PG-13
- MPAA explanation: intense sequences of action/adventure violence and some frightening images.
For kids who love pirates
Our editors recommend
Top advice and articles
Common Sense Media's unbiased ratings are created by expert reviewers and aren't influenced by the product's creators or by any of our funders, affiliates, or partners.