The cutlass is a defensive weapon not meant for attacking. The golden cutlass is always used by notorious pirates and Baron Raymondo or Colonel Mendoza.The player's cutlass, however, is always a slate-greyish colour. In cutscenes or character animation, however, you have a golden cutlass. It is one of the three weapon types; its compatriots are the rapier and longsword.

Weapon Speed Characteristics
Rapier Quick Quick Attack, Poor Defense
Longsword Balanced Balance of Attack and Defense, All-Rounder
Cutlass Slow Slow Attack, Strong Defense