Nathan Sizemore’s review published on Letterboxd:
The first time I saw this was in the theater and I remember ridiculing it with my wife. It was so convoluted and utterly ridiculous. A sea battle happens on the cusp of a maelstrom. Jack and Elizabeth get married while sword fighting with sea creatures.
But I think the explanation for my flip-flop on the movie in my subsequent three viewings can best be explained by sea turtles.
You see, sea turtles are mentioned at various points during the first three films to explain hard-to-explain plot points. How did Jack get off the island where he was marooned? He rode on sea turtles tied together with rope made from his own hair.
In this film when the dog with the key in its mouth appears at Ship Wreck Cove a few of the pirates look askance at each other. I mean, the last we saw of that dog he was sitting on the throne on the cannibal island in a post-credits scene in Dead Man's Chest. The explanation for his presence? "Sea turtles, mate."
You see, the ridiculousness is the point.
In Curse of the Black Pearl there's a tossed off joke about how the monkey is named Jack, too. This joke is not allowed to live a solitary life. The monkey is referred to as Jack many, many times over the next several hours of movie. It becomes a thing. Just like the sea turtles. And Davy Jones weird relationship with physical objects. And Jack's compass. If you can't dance to that music then these films probably aren't for you.
But they're definitely not slapped together or lazy. They're painstakingly constructed in extreme detail to be ridiculous pirate epics.
The ridiculousness is the point.