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Fun with Franchises: Our Favorite Images from Pirates of the Caribbean: At World’s End

One of the recurring features that we do in Fun with Franchises (a feature within a feature) is, after we finish watching a film, we go through and pick out our favorite images from that film. These images could be anything from really famous images from the film or franchise, really beautifully composed shots, shots that are funny to us because of the facial expressions being made in them or because of what we said about them in the article in which they appeared, or simply because they have boobs in them.

What we usually do is, just how we watch the films, Colin and I go in separately and pick out about ten to fifteen shots that we really liked. Then we compare lists, and whichever ones we both picked automatically go on our final list. And everything else we talk through and discuss why we like them, and eventually we’re left with a final list of ten images we liked the best, along with ten honorable mentions, which were also as good, but just missed out on making the list proper.

It’s not very complicated (like most things we do here on B+ Movie Blog), and is just a way for us to point out shots that we really liked in the films, especially since we tend to pick stuff that’s not always on the beaten path. (We also don’t officially rank the list of shots. We just put them in chronological order. Simply picking them is hard enough. We don’t want to make our lives any harder. Plus, we’re lazy.)

That said — here are our favorite images from Pirates of the Caribbean: At World’s End:

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Oh shit… we have to pick shots!

Wait a minute…

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There we go.

All right. Time for what will most likely be our craziest and most plentiful shots list for this franchise.

Kind of like how Return of the King just had a thousand shots on it.

This’ll be the same way.

But lets cut that number down by me dumping a bunch of shots in the intro.

Like this shot. This was one of my favorite shots in the movie. I love a good shot of someone walking along a beach, especially when it’s from this angle (i.e., from the knee down). And on top of it, from this angle, you also get the crisp image of sand, the water, and you get to see everyone running toward Jack, like, “Oh, thank goodness you’re here, we need you back alive!” which is humorous to me. But, I like this shot quite a bit.

I also like this image of them fighting atop the mast. The image itself as well as this actual image. I like the angle of this one in particular. But the idea of two people swordfighting atop a mast is a really great image.

This is a midget hitting a giant dude over the head with a shovel and peacing.

And Beckett’s office. Look at that fucking place. That’s aboard a ship! That globe, that map, that desk, those windows (this composition — seriously, look at this fucking place), and of course, the thing you know we love here at B+ Movie Blog — the table with all the war figures on it. Honestly, if you gave us a chance to do it again, we’d probably have these shots on the list. But it’s already done and we’re lazy.

But goddamn, that place. I want my office to look like that one day.

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That’s attractive.

And, of course, who doesn’t love a good Mexican Standoff?

I think we’ve also established how much I enjoy camera splashes. I think I like this one even more than usual because I like the Asian architecture and also the fire in the back that contrasts nicely with the coolness of the water.

We also know how much I love underwater cinematography. If left to my own devices, this might have made the list just because of how much this stands out to me as an image. I really love this shot quite a bit. But I know enough by now to just put these shots in the intro, since I seem to be the only one who really likes them enough to put them on the list.

Oh, also — this moment. How fucking stupid can you be? But the best part is — after he pulls the sword out, we get a really nice water spatter effect that is possibly my favorite effect in the movie (though, I don’t know, that Up Is Down effect might have to stay at #1). I love that so much. Because we know I love the water splashes on the camera, plus in this case, this is like a samurai movie with the water as blood. It’s almost like that shot in Deathly Hallows Part 1 where Dobby shoots Wormtongue in the head, and there’s that spatter of mud on the wall that perfectly gives you the image of blood without actually having the blood there. I really like when they find PG-13 ways to show R things without sacrificing anything or making it look stupid. So I’m a huge fan of that second shot.

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Mmm… karate chicks with titties.

I also want to take a moment to once again appreciate this shot. This is literally a POV porno shot but with ships. It’s… so hilarious to me. I really wanted to have this on the list, but I felt the image itself wasn’t as strong as some of the other choices, and felt like too easy a choice given that the article this shot is in was subtitled after it. So I think we’ve given it enough. I don’t think we needed to use another spot on it. Though, I guess —

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We can always get it in there that way.

(Phrasing.)

And these last three shots will be fitting.

First — Davy Jones stabbing a motherfucker. That angle is nice as shit. That’s exactly the angle for when you stab a motherfucker in cold blood.

And here’s Orlando Bloom being stabbed. Colin loves shots people getting stabbed. And who could blame him?

And then this image. Which speaks for itself. In a lesser film, this would be a top ten, or at the very least, an honorable mention. Here, it’s an afterthought.

That says a lot about the quality of shots in this film.

That said, let’s get to our list:

All right, folks. It’s time for the list:

1. Keira Knightley

Colin and I both pulled a bunch of shots of Keira, so I figured we’d just combine them all into one entry, that both appreciates and basks in the glow of how beautiful she is and how well they shot her in this movie, as well as illustrate how much of a badass she becomes in this movie.

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Look at this — the first time we see her, she puts a knife to a dude’s throat, and when she’s told a killing would “cast a slight pall over” their meeting with Sao Feng, she does this. “Fine. I won’t kill him.” She looks so disappointed. That’s awesome.

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And this. She comes loaded for bear with a shitload of guns. And then she pulls this grenade out like, “Well, better safe than sorry.”

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And then of course this, which is great, pulling out that giant ass gun and Barbossa looking at her like, “Where’d you have that one hiding?”

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This shot is just really, really nice. You know I like me some quiet moments, and this is a nice quite moment with Keira Knightley that’s composed and lit really well.

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I love how they light her in these movies.

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Wind swept hair.

This is some Les Mis shit.

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Underwater cinematography + Keira Knightley = win.

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Purple sky behind her + blue water. Nice.

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This moment is fucking badass. She tells Norrington her father is dead, he says he didn’t know, and she goes, “What? Which side you chose?” making him feel like an asshole. And then he tries to make amends and she’s like, “Nah, son, I’ll stay with my crew,” and backs up into them like during a rap battle.

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LIGHTING.

This shot is fucking beautiful.

Can we just have a series of movies that light Keira Knightley the way they used to light Marlene Dietrich?

Look at this fucking shot.

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More lighting.

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I will never object to a close up of Keira Knightley. Ever.

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Love this moment. She makes the Will for Jack swap, and Barbossa’s like, “You have no goddamn right to do that,” and she’s like, “I’m the motherfuckin’ pirate king, bitch! I can do whatever the fuck I want!”

And she can.

(There’s also a great reaction by Depp here, as he looks really proud of her until she looks over at him, and he goes back to normal so as not to show her that he’s proud of her. It’s a visual continuation of that “Pirate” moment from the last film.)

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Simplicity wins.

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Seriously.

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Sex hair. Lighting.

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I love suggestive shots.

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Seriously. They light her perfectly in these movies, and they make her a badass. Huge fan of her in this movie, and this felt like a nice way to show it.

Colin:

She’s hot. We all know it. Kristen Stewart ain’t shit.

2. This place

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This place.

Fucking look at this place.

Colin:

This sort of shot is exactly why there should be more movies set in areas like this. I was so excited when BBC came out with Frozen Planet, cause it was just like Planet Earth, but a full series of JUST the Ice Worlds episode. Some shots of jungle can be nice, and a lot of shots of desert can be nice, but almost ALL shots of icescapes are amazing.

4 THIS SHOT

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My favorite shot in the film, and possibly the franchise. Holy shit is this absolutely beautiful.

And we threw in the other angle because we could.

Colin:

Also my favorite shot in the franchise. How could it not be?

4. The Locker

As dumb a setup as this is for all the ridiculousness they do to Sparrow’s character — the shots here look nice.

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Look at this. A ship in the middle of a desert. Brilliant imagery.

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“Shoo.”

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I love this image. So much.

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I like patterns.

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Overheads.

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Overheads plus shadow.

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Lens flare.

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This framing. (Might be my favorite shot of the bunch.)

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You know we love shots like this. We’ve featured one pretty much in every shots list for the last like, seven movies.

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And this I love because it’s visual redemption for him. Here he is, sailing his ship away from DEATH.

And it’s a gorgeous shot at that.

Colin:

Yeah, I was a huge fan of all the imagery in this sequence. Particularly him pulling the rope that just leads offscreen. That’s just a fantastically composed shot. And of course, there’s the point at which he can’t feel his legs.

5. Ships and the Sea

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You know we have lots of these. These shots are gorgeous, and they deserve to be here.

There’s nothing that needs to be said at this point, they look fucking good. Possibly even better than last movie. I like that the water has a much more choppy quality to it, and even in that second shot, it’s almost like what a Van Gogh of water would look like.

That shot of the Pearl and Sao Feng’s ship is glorious.

That shot of the three ships together with the unnaturally blue water is gorgeous.

The one after that at sunset is gorgeous.

And that one next to the cliff is just absolutely jizz everywhere.

Colin:

Lines of things, silhouettes and heat waves. All of those things.

– – – – –

And now it’s time for a Keith Richards break.

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And now back to the list.

– – – – –

6. Up Is Down

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I thought I’d like one of those last two most of all, but I think I might actually like that first shot best. That shot is astoundingly good.

And I put two angles of the ship turning upside down, because I like canted angles, and because the second one — well, look at it. It’s upside down. And it looks like it was done practically with miniatures, which makes it even more enjoyable to me.

Colin:

The first shot is nice because of the lighting. I love that they did this spin in real time, because pulling that off must have been tricky. Rather than just cutting to it. And then the idea of the sky being this inky blue and the sea being colored like the sky — I love this last image.

7. Shipwreck Cove

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This place.

That is all.

Colin:

Places that are stacked on themselves are always great. This is like if the Weasley house was a whole town. It also sort of reminds me of Minas Tirith in that it rises from the bottom so quickly, although you know that in this place there’s no rhyme or reason to how you get to the top. So I guess it’s more like a favela. I’ve always been fascinated by cityscapes, and incredibly dense cities, which is why I love that they used Hashima as the basis for Javier Bardem’s hideout in Skyfall. That location is so dense and so interesting. I need to visit Hashima, and you guys need to wiki that shit if you don’t know what I’m talking about. At its peak, it had a population density over double that of the densest city in the world today.

I will say — one thing I love is how this place is all ships connected by wooden bridges. That’s so great.

8. This shot

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(Do we even need comments here?)

Colin:

Arrrr?

9. This image

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Because it speaks for itself. And because I could reference at least three movies based on these images.

Colin:

This reminded me of several movies, but the color choices reminded me of Skyfall, when they bust through the ice. That looked so good. That whole movie looked so good. So there’s your advice, people. Remind me of Skyfall, and I’ll praise how your movie looks.

Remind me of Roger Deakins, and I’ll praise how your movie looks.

10. This place

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The swords crossed is more about how nice the shot looks than the imagery.

The second shot looked like something we passed on the way to Mordor. But nicer.

And the third and fourth ones speak for themselves.

They really timed that shit perfectly with the waves.

Colin:

That last shot…holy shit. That’s the one. The texturing doesn’t quite say ‘painting,’ but the composition does. 

It’s also the last time (in the film) we see Elizabeth, too.

It’s time for the honorable mentions!

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– – – – – – – – – –

Honorable Mentions:

  • Opening Shot/Sunlight

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Because we both liked the opening shot, and I like when they do these sun flare shots. So I included both of those, and threw on a bunch of other sun shots because I could.

The flag one is really nice, especially since the sun completely blurs it out after a second.

And the other one — well, yeah.

Colin:

Huge fan of noose shots in general, but when you do them with sun, it’s even better. Really, I was into the flag shot, cause it’s always great when the color washes out in the sun. It never really looks that way to the naked eye, but that silvery quality is really nice.

  • Beasts of the Middle Kingdom

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Because it’s a nice image. Child and the fireworks, running across a bridge. What’s even better is right after this we cut to a woman chopping the heads off of fish.

Colin:

I said we needed more silhouettes, and here they are. There’s just all this random hanging stuff in the shot. What’s hanging everyhwere? Where’s this kid running to? Isn’t it past your bedtime, Singaporean kid? Nah, maybe not. But anyway, someone’s running in front of fireworks, and it makes their silhouette look nice.

  • This

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It’s Gibbs running whilst shooting two guns.

The end.

Colin:

So many awesome.

  • Barbossa

Let’s now take a moment to go over how badass Barbossa is and how terrific he is in this movie.

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Dude’s laughing as he’s going down a waterfall.

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This shot. This shot could have been a top ten by itself.

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He also gets the great closeup too.

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This is his sexy talking voice.

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love this shot. Because one, they’re in the middle of a fucking monsoon and are about to get pulled into a maelstrom. They’re all freaking out and we just cut to him, standing here, looking at his nails. And then they go, “Barbossa, we need you at the wheel.” And he’s like, “Yeah, that’s true.” Acknowledging how much of a badass he is.

And on the other hand, this is a nice shot, because, having been forgotten by most of the viewing audience, Barbossa had that little conversation with Tia Dalma where he said how much he hated not having his fate in his own hands and how he wanted some control back over that. And then she did that thing with his hand, and we saw him clutching it afterward, presumably thinking about how easily he could go back to being dead. So here, we cut to him looking at that hand, and it actually has way more subtext than 90% of the shots in this movie. And his decision to get behind the wheel also has added subtext to it.

See — the shit you don’t think about.

You thought I liked this just because it looked badass.

Colin:

I mean, I liked it just because it looked badass. But that’s a good reason too. It got me because he’s waiting for them to ask. He knows they’re going to, and he’s just standing there waiting for them to put him in the game. And that’s the moment everyone loves — when someone knows they’re a boss and will be asked at any moment to save the day, but they just stand there doing whatever.

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And here he is, performing a wedding ceremony while chopping bitches.

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This is my favorite, since he’s literally fighting two guys at the same time without looking. Just going back and forth, timing his hits perfectly, while pronouncing them man and wife. That’s badass as shit.

Colin:

I love this one for the position of his legs. Makes it look like he’s dancing or something.

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And then he fucking shoots a guy and laughs maniacally again. It’s fun to take pleasure in other people’s happiness.

This man is just happy killing people.

Plus, look at this shot.

Colin:

New guns don’t make enough smoke. More gunsmoke.

  • This image

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You know we love lines of things appearing from out of mist.

What makes this better than the rest is that the line takes up THE ENTIRE FRAME. That shit stretches ALL THE WAY across. This is almost equivalent to those shots I love where people’s hair or whatever takes up the entire frame. This is just like that. The entire horizon is taken up by ships appearing from the mist.

That’s incredible.

Colin:

D-Day.

  • Parlay

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Look at this sandbar. Look at this second shot.

This place is fucking great.

And it’s a great place to have a parlay.

Colin:

How’d they figure out to meet here? This would be a great place for a tiki bar. Not to mention

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Colin: 

I hadn’t finished that.

  • Sipping Tea During War

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There is a war about to happen, and here he is, calmly sipping tea. How cool is that?

And then it’s the fact that he’s doing this on the deck of a ship, which is just a wonderfully juxtaposition in and of itself.

Colin:

Oh what a lovely tea party! He’s the calculating bad guy who will take time to sip tea in front of his subordinates and stuff. And when you think about it, he’s probably got two or three guys polishing that tea set so it doesn’t tarnish, cause at this point, what’s he using these individual soldiers for? He’s a boss and he knows it. But he’s like me — he always has a beverage, or is at least about to pour one. It’s one thing I noticed throughout these movies and never mentioned in the articles, but he’s constantly drinking something. And I’m like that. I would have liked to have just one shot of a dude coming to inform him of something, like, “We’re coming up on [whatever ship], Sir!” and then have it cut to him pissing out the back window of The Endeavour. 

  • Maelstrom

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I like rain, ships, water, lightning and beautiful images.

This checks all the boxes.

And the second one is just nice, both ships tangled together over the top of the abyss. This is how you want to end a trilogy.

Colin:

The maelstrom itself didn’t really become an issue, which was my only gripe. It looked nice, and they call Barbossa in to drive, but then he’s fighting bitches and nobody seems to be on the wheel. They’re just going. But it looks pretty cool, right? I guess it’s just Calypso’s thing? She started it and then pissed off to catch up on all the episodes of Martin she missed while trapped as a human.

  • Destruction

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I love shots of destruction. Look how good these look.

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Seriously, though — this is Saving Private Ryan.

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Boom.

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I love shots of debris flying everywhere.

Maybe that’s why I love The Impossible.

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This is a great image, too. Him walking amidst everything being destroyed around him. Visually and thematically. They give Beckett some great final images. Davy Jones doesn’t get that. They know who their villain is.

Colin:

This is done so well. The hand isn’t even touching anything because the railing he was holding just got blown the fuck up. He’s perfectly unscathed the whole time, just watching it all happen.

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Annihilation.

Colin:

Well that boat’s no good.

  • This place

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Because fucking look at it. If you animated this, this would be a place where a Disney movie would happen.

(Which is funny, because this is actually a Disney movie.)

But yeah, this place is awesome. I’d live in a place that looked like this.

Colin:

Old cities need to be preserved. This is why I enjoy Europe, cause there are still places that look like this.

So that’s our list.

Now Colin and I are gonna go off and rope ourselves a couple of sea turtles bitches.

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– – – – – – – – – –

Tomorrow, we do final thoughts, and Monday is On Stranger Tides.

(See the rest of the Fun with Franchises articles here.)

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