Mixed or average reviews - based on 36 Critics

Critic score distribution:
  1. Positive: 12 out of 36
  2. Negative: 5 out of 36
  1. The most visually spectacular, action-packed and surreal of the adventures of Capt. Jack Sparrow (Johnny Depp).
  2. I won't be able to talk anybody into or out of the Pirates of the Caribbean experience now, so I'll simply offer sage advice: Hit the bathroom just before it starts. To miss any five-minute chunk of this densely plotted trilogy-capper will leave you confused.
  3. More than ever, Depp masterfully keeps the enterprise afloat, even when the sheer weight of all those other characters threatens to throw it off-course.
  4. Exciting, distracting and quite possibly permanently concentration impairing, what Pirates of the Caribbean: At World's End offers is a wonderfully scenic medley of impressive action sequences so lengthy, elaborate and numerous that remembering what came before becomes a kind of test of mental focus.
  5. The cannibals, coconuts and landlocked locations have been replaced by the high-seas high jinks that made the first film so enjoyable.
  6. Funner, biggerer, brighterer, bolderer, Pirates of the Caribbean: At World's End is not only okay, it may even be close to good. A lavish spectacle illuminated by Johnny Depp's swishing pirate captain, the movie has its dull moments, but not many.
  7. Depp plays multiple versions of Sparrow, who now suffers from a split personality; his shtick is funny, but the players are all upstaged by the astonishing special effects, superior to those of earlier installments in creating a wondrous and menacing world.
  8. Depp and Rush are still in there plugging away. They’re troupers, but the series is all used up. If there is to be another sequel it will have to be called "Pirates of the Caribbean – At Wit's End."
  9. A sumptuous feast for the eyes and an occasionally exhilarating stimulant to the heart. But beware my hearty: It will tie your rum-soaked brain in knots.
  10. 63
    It's almost three hours long, and that's a lot of time to invest in what is, essentially, a theme-park attraction you can't ride.
  11. Reviewed by: Ty Burr
    You can bet your parrot "Pirates" will be back, even if "At World's End" hasn't the foggiest idea when to quit.
  12. 63
    The last 60 minutes offer adventure as rousing as anything provided in either of the previous installments. Unfortunately, that doesn't account for the other 108 minutes of this gorged, self-indulgent, and uneven production.
  13. 60
    The action IS pretty engaging, Sao Feng and his gang of South Asian cutthroats are a nice addition, and the constant plot explication does require you to pay attention.
  14. Reviewed by: Helen O'Hara
    The plot's a trippy, twisty mess, and it's far too long, but it looks fantastic and makes some bold choices in its execution. And once again Jack's back to save the day.
  15. Reviewed by: Dana Stevens
    Like all abstract art, At World's End is best approached non-narratively, as an experience rather than a story.
  16. Reviewed by: Brian Lowry
    The third voyage in the "Priates" trilogy could be touted as "The biggest, loudest and second-best (or second-worst) 'Pirates' ever!" -- not necessarily a ringing endorsement, but honest.
  17. It's an even more tedious storytelling mess, with a plot so muddled it's impossible to accurately describe, generating zero interest in its characters and grinding on for nearly three endless hours.
  18. 50
    The good news first: Keith Richards totally rocks it playing pirate daddy to Johnny Depp's Capt. Jack Sparrow. The deep rumble of his voice and those hooded eyes that narrowly open like the creaky gates of hell make him what the rest of this three-peat is not: authentically scary...So what's the bad news? Richards is onscreen for barely two minutes.
  19. 50
    The longest and talkiest installment in the blockbuster Pirates trilogy, At World's End doesn't even have the decency to provide a good action sequence until more than two hours in.
  20. 50
    It's not a total shipwreck, but abandon hope all ye seeking a coherent, much less satisfying, narrative. Expect instead a reported $300 million worth of eye candy, delivered with enormous technical skill.
  21. Ultimately the voyage is so choppy and long (2 hours, 48 minutes) that into the third hour I found myself yawning, "Yo-ho-hum and a very sore bum."
  22. Reviewed by: Ethan Alter
    Even Depp's increasingly tired antics can't lighten the dour mood; in fact, Sparrow is completely overshadowed here by Rush's lively turn as Barbossa.
  23. Knightley's Elizabeth becomes a pirate captain this time. You know a franchise has run its course when it has a buccaneer heroine who looks as if she'd hate to get her face smudged.
  24. Reviewed by: David Ansen
    The longest, grimmest and least funny of the trilogy.
  25. 42
    What started out as a fleet one-off swashbuckler with novel supernatural elements has become loaded and graceless, with each new entry barreling across the goal line like William "The Refrigerator" Perry.
  26. 40
    Like the Flying Dutchman, this third Pirates outing is an empty vessel haunted by the ghosts of its sabre-rattling betters.
  27. 40
    This is a glazed, inhuman, cluttered piece of work, a storytelling mishmash that buries the considerable charms of its actors under heavy drifts of silt.
  28. Reviewed by: Nathan Lee
    Long before the third, fourth, or fifth climax in this endless, obligatory summer diversion, I slunk into my seat in a passive, inattentive stupor, fully submitting to the fact that I hadn't the slightest idea what the hell was going on.
  29. Reviewed by: Richard Schickel
    Their film is not so much thought out as strung together -- colorful incident upon colorful incident, but without logic, gathering suspense or any attempt to establish emotional connections between audience and actors.
  30. A ponderous pirate saga, 168 minutes long, with more doldrums than "The Rime of the Ancient Mariner." Those doldrums are relieved from time to time by spectacular effects.
  31. 40
    "Gentlemen, I wash my hands of this weirdness," Captain Jack says. Sir, you speak for us all.
  32. Reviewed by: Claudia Puig
    The pirate ship has hit foul waters, and even the sharp wit and charm of everyone's favorite buccaneer can't save it.
  33. The whole d--- thing can be summed up in three little words: yo ho hum.
  34. 33
    The loudest, dumbest, slowest, least entertaining and most annoying by a very comfortable margin.
  35. 33
    A movie made at wits' end. There are four or five authentic laughs in the whole 170-minute extravaganza.
  36. Has no narrative throughline, no emotional spine. It's a mess.
User Score

Mixed or average reviews- based on 688 Ratings

User score distribution:
  1. Negative: 91 out of 289
  1. Sep 24, 2011
    Man, the story is getting dumber...
  2. Jan 12, 2011
    Stunning, absolutely stunning in all ways... UN-describable awesome story and incredible swash-buckling action and it's just... Brilliant and.... WOW
  3. Dec 30, 2011
    Again the story gets emotionally well written at the heart of the movie, but it isn't very well told so the movie definitely suffers. Although it benefits from amazing performance, breathtaking visuals, clever humor which only makes sense if you have seen the first two installments and a great ending well supposed to be ending for an unforgettable franchise. I give this movie 60%. Full Review »