Pirates of the Caribbean Dead Men Tell No Tales – Jack Sparrow is Back

Given the sorry fate of other work derived from Disney theme-park attractions – The Country Bears (2002), The Haunted Mansion (2003) – it’s amazing that the Pirates of the Caribbean series should have remained financially seaworthy through four passable-to-disinterest movies. With Pirates of the Caribbean 5 (named Pirates of the Caribbean Dead Men Tell No Tales in the US, and Salazar’s Revenge in some other nations) the cracks in the hull become definitely-must-watch.

Orlando Bloom has begged for minor participation, handing his sextant to on-screen son Brenton Thwaites while Skins alumna Kaya Scodelario inherits Keira Knightley’s corsets. The franchise, in other words, has begun its Muppet Babies /Scrappy-Doo phase, with all the pop-cultural weight that hints.

There’s also fresher blood behind the camera, not entirely undesirable after the experimental boredom of Gore Verbinski’s three-hour farewell At World’s End and Rob Marshall’s by-the-numbers On Stranger Tides. Norwegians Joachim Rønning and Espen Sandberg and the Oscar-nominated Kon-Tiki, are keener than their previous wok to spend time at sea – some comfort to anybody wondering how fun this series really is in pirating – and throw much of the ballast that clogged predecessors overboard. Pirates of the Caribbean Dead Men Tell No Tales moves at a faster rate of knots than those previous ones; one issue, nothing has really been added. It’s the same soggy adventure, aim at a marginally rational pace.

In terms of plot, there is literally a ghost of an idea: to have Johnny Depp’s Jack Sparrow – washed up on St Martin, with his dear boat the Black Pearl subtly secreted inside a bottle – tried to back out on to the sea after the revelation of Salazar, a decomposing Spaniard whom Sparrow formerly sent to a watery grave. Javier Bardem brings an air of old-schooled chorizo to this villainous character, but the performance doesn’t develop the hatred much, stirring up noisy disturbance – positively sensing that the fans aren’t here for entangled yarn-spinning, rather the long-awaited return of Captain Jack.

Johnny Depp properly does what he does in Pirates of the Caribbean Dead Men Tell No Tales movies – he swaggers, he rolls those kohl-heavy Keith Richards eyes, he peeks at younger female co-star – but this series has always been about bringing pantomimic nonsense, tons of it. So it’s that Golshifteh Farahani (who starred in last year’s Paterson) is bald with foul teeth as a twisted witch; so it is Paul McCartney briefly pops up as Sparrow’s scouse uncle. After Becks in King Arthur, it’s not the film’s worst famous cameo – rather lovely, Macca steps in, tells a joke, and wanders off, thumbs semi-aloft – but this isn’t A Hard Day’s Night so much as A Very Easy Paycheque.

Audience value-for-money indicates more disputable. The Pirates franchise hasn’t conveyed a memorable scene since Dead Man’s Chest’s gigantic waterwheel, and time and again this chooses distraction over consequence, overfilling the screen with pictures that reach scale – like the ship that rises up on its sides in willingness for attack – but not much meaning. The much-trailed zombie shark scene appears feeling like seeing somebody playing a tie-in video game.

Maybe the series’ success depends on the bountiful downtime it offers encircled consumers: even with the wind in its sails here, long stretches of fruitless exposition invite one to relax, text a friend, make funeral arrangements, whatever it is. The rock’n’roll impudence the Pirates franchise once claimed to have freighted into multiplexes has now long since shifted over the horizon.

Pirates of the Caribbean Dead Men Tell No Tales – Jack Sparrow is Back
Rate this post

Join our newsletter now, you will receive new News everyday. Subscribe us now!
We hate spam. Your email address will not be sold or shared with anyone else.

Leave a Comment