I have a vague memory of seeing this at the theater, although what I associate more with it was the frantic drive home from running errands in order to make it in time. There's this one intersection back home that's particularly awful, and in order to grab and Happy Meal and get home I had to cross it two or three times. Then I still had to hoover the MickeyD's and haul ass to the theater. I made it!
The other strong memory about it is that I went in completely head over heels for Orlando Bloom (because of LOTR, obv) and left absolutely enamored with Johnny Depp. I wonder how many others that was true for.
Im sure I dont really need to argue the fun of this film to any of you. Its really all about Captain Jack Sparrow (still LOVE that the role scored Depp an Oscar nod). Throw in the sword fights (in particular the one in the blacksmith's shop) and the dumb pirates and the cast and the Disney magic and you've got one of the most remarkable films of the millennium.
Can't forget about the soundtrack. One of the flew instrumental soundtracks I ever acquired (cant say purchased cause I know I downloaded it...) but that theme is so classic. I also associate that with Star Wars Trilogy: Musical Edition because one of the most brilliant things our writers did was score the light saber duels with the Pirates theme.