Two thoughts:

  1. This film is so much better than its sequels; it’s unbelievable. It’s on par with the great Indiana Jones flicks; a top-tier adventure movie. Geoffrey Rush and Depp make this (Rush does not get enough credit for this film.) It’s impeccably shot and lit, well edited, and just smart film making (particularly its first half).

  2. Because the sequels are as terrible as they are, we know empirically that this film should not have worked. It’s incredible it exists. And because we know Verbinski was given no reigns and complete creative control for the sequels, we can’t blame the sequels’ quality on Disney. The fact is, this movie should have been a total disaster, and it’s the opposite.

It’s a complete miracle this film is as watchable and fantastic as it is. Even the soundtrack is a banger.

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