Carina is an intelligent, resourceful, and serious young woman who has dedicated her life to studying the stars.
She detested pirates as shown when she insulted Jack and his crew on various occasions and slapped Barbossa for insulting her father (unaware he was her father). After being saved by Barbossa and learning he was her father, she accepted it even though he was a pirate as he saved her and assured he cared for her by calling her Treasure. Following Barbossa's death, she was distraught by his sacrifice as she searched for him for years and he was gone again. However, after Henry gave her back her book she was reminded of her father's care and took on his name to honor his memory.
She initially did not believe in the supernatural and harshly criticized others for believing in them but this changed when seeing Captain Salazar along with his undead crew up close, which left her speechless and ran off screaming that such things existed. Her shock further increased as she witnessed the Black Pearl being released from a bottle and growing to full size. Afterwards, she accepted that not all things can be explained scientifically.
She formed a close bond with Henry Turner, who also had distant relationship with his father and they soon developed an attraction that both acted on. When they became a couple, she was very happy to be with him and now lives with him and his family.
Initially she hated Jack Sparrow as she believed that he was just another vile pirate and she teased him constantly but during their adventure togheter she started to learn that he's actually a good man with a great intelligence and started to respect him, Jack started to learn the same with her and started to respect her too resulting in them becoming close friends, with Sparrow defending her during the battle at Poseidon's Tomb and Carina being afraid when she thought Salazar killed him. Thanks to Jack, she also developed a sense of humor showed at the end of the film when she's talking to Henry.
After the death of her mother, Margaret Smyth, her father, Hector Barbossa, left her at an orphanage as a young girl, with a diary that contained clues to finding the Trident of Poseidon, which had the ability to break all curses in the ocean.
As Carina grew up, she began to take interest in science, astronomy, and math. Her aptitude with these subjects led others to believe she was a witch. Searching for her father became a main goal in her life.
Because of the mistaken belief that she was a witch, Carina was eventually imprisoned at St. Martin's jail and was scheduled to be hanged. She escapes the guards and hides in an astronomy shop while meeting Jack Sparrow who helps her in eluding the guards for the time being, though she is annoyed.
She later disguises herself as a nun where she meets Henry Turner, who was arrested for treason. She learns that he is seeking the Trident and questions him on what he knows, though she disbelieves his story about the supernatural but receives a little information before she is recognized as a fugitive but helps Henry in escaping. Carina flees but is recaptured and scheduled for hanging.
The next day, she is taken for hanging in the town square. Carina is asked for her last words and she uses the moment to silence and insult the crowd for stupidly believing her to be a witch but is interrupted by Jack Sparrow (who was also arrested and sent to be executed). They argue for a while and Carina ends it with telling the people to execute the rambling pirate first and she'll wait on her time. However, their bickering had annoyed and caused the crowd to want them both executed at the same time. Fortunately, Henry and Jack's crew arrived and Henry himself saved Carina from being hung by catching her (though in a comprising manner) and asking her to aid him, which she begrudgingly agreed. After being freed, she fled the area with the crew as more guards appeared.
During the adventure, Carina acted as a navigator for Jack's crew but was annoyed by the stupidity of the crew. Also, she forms an association with Henry and their talks shows some feelings for each other which Jack and the crew poke fun at, to the pair's irritation.
When Jack's crew learn they are being hunted by the undead, they mutiny by putting him, Carina, and Henry in a rowboat. As the enemy crew follow them, Carina swims to land as Jack and Henry are forced to deal with the attacks of Salazar and his undead sharks. Once Jack and Henry reach land, Carina sees Captain Salazar and his undead crew arrive, which left her in complete disbelief that ghosts and other supernatural things actually existed.
As she ran off in the forest still screaming and trying to process the unbelievable sight, she was soon caught in a net where she screamed for help before Jack and Henry arrived. They find her and she begs them to free her, Henry moves to do so but he and Jack are in a caught in a net too. Three pirates show up and knock Jack out and took them to their leader.
When Jack awoke, he found Henry and Carina tied up before he came face to face with a pirate named Pig Kelly who owned the island and was owed a large amount of money by Jack. Kelly intended for Jack to marry his sister to pay off his debt, while making Henry and Carina the best man and maid of honor respectively.
Jack was unwilling to go through with it even ignoring the threat of death, as Carina and Henry tried to help him but to no avail. Fortunately, Hector Barbossa and his crew arrive and he dispatches Kelly and his men, freeing Jack's group from the wedding.
Carina then witnessed Barbossa freeing the Black Pearl from its bottle prison and was amazed by it. After Barbossa established captaincy, he had Carina and Henry held captive as the ship sailed but the two were able to negotiate their freedom after Carina promised to lead the way.
As she steered the ship, Carina listed all the things she's witnessed as Henry told her all the myths were real and that she had to acknowledge she was wrong. However, she told him that she only had doubts and he called her out on the worst apology as she said that he had to apologize for endangering her with the myths. He noted that she now believed in them only apologizing for that and she accepted it as he realized he walked into her hands and leaves while she is pleased he is following her way. With the trident destroyed, the walls of the sea began to close and drown all trapped inside. However, Barbossa has the crew of the Pearl use the anchor to save Jack's group. When Carina nearly falls off, Barbossa saves her and his relation to Carina is revealed to her after she notices his tattoo was similar to the schematics of her dairy. She asks him who she is to him and he tells her she is "treasure" to him. Barbossa noticed Salazar moving to kill his daughter and after securing her safety, he is given a sword by Jack and sacrifices himself to kill Salazar and his remaining men to save Carina and the others. Carina stares in her father's eyes as both he and Salazar are washed away by the rushing sea.
After her father's death, Jack watched Henry looking at Carina's sad expression and gave him Carina's diary so that he could win her over. With the book, Henry approached her asking how she felt as she stated she didn't know as she found what she sought for years (her father) only for it to be gone again. Henry comforted her over her father's death by giving her back her book while calling her "Miss Smyth". Touched by this gesture, Carina soon corrects him by taking her father's surname, "Barbossa" and becomes a friend of Jack.
Henry and Carina were dropped off at Henry's home, where they walked on a path and Henry acknowledged that Jack was right about his feelings for her and tried to kiss her but earns a slap from her as she was just checking if it was him and he wasn't possessed. They share a joking banter before Henry kisses Carina, which surprises her but she soon returns the sentiment and they smile at each other after it.
She happily watched as Henry was reunited with his father Will Turner, who was finally freed of his curse and they catch up before Henry's mother Elizabeth Swann shows up and reconnects with her husband. Henry then approached Carina and held her hand, symbolizing their newfound romance.
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