I expected to hate it.
*Very* nice. Okay, I laughed my ass off because Orlando Bloom has Kit Marlowe's ratty little moustache. And Johnny Depp is wonderful as the swishiest pirate in the Carribean, with Geoffrey Rush underplaying his villain in lovely counterpoint.
The chick wasn't bad either. *g* (Totally unfair, but I kept getting distracted by dark-haired men in pirate shirts. It's a weakness.)
But what really impressed me was the structural soundness of the movie in general. Everything that plays out is set up; everything that's established is used. Usually in small ways, sometimes in grand ones. Except for the very, very end of the denouement, which I felt hit a false note and contradicted the natural ending of the movie.
I suspect they changed what they intended for test audiences.
This is why you should not always give your readers what they want, but rather what they need.
Which reliance on careful structure meant I knew more or less everything that was going to happen, but, to quote Connie Willis-- "...so I learned how to do it, and thereby rendered myself incapable of every being surprised again."
Also, the comic relief characters didn't annoy me. I have absolutely zero tolerance for comic relief characters. This was clever enough, well-peopled enough with strong characters, plotty enough, and rich enough with smart crosses and double crosses to keep me entertained through the whole damned two hours twenty, or however long it is.
It is not great art. But it was a hell of a lot of fun, and mmmm. Swishy Johnny Depp. Not-so-swishy Orlando Bloom.
Life is good.