Sunday, May 28, 2017

Pirates of the Caribbean: Dead Men Tell No Tales

Movie Name: Pirates of the Caribbean: Dead Men Tell No Tales
Year of Release: 2017
Director: Joachim Ronning, Espen Sandberg
Stars: Johnny Depp, Javier Bardem, Geoffrey Rush, Kaya Scoledario, Brenton Thwaites, Kevin McNally, David Wenham, Orlando Bloom, Stephen Graham, Keira Knightley, Martin Klebba, Adam Brown, Angus Barnett, Golshifteh Farahani
Genre: Action, Adventure
Score out of ten (whole numbers only): 5
View Trailer Here

Following the dismal critical reception of the latest installment of the Pirates of the Caribbean franchise (directed by Rob Marshall and released in 2011), one that still managed to surpass 1 billion dollars in revenue, Disney pushed forward with another sequel, this time around directed by the duo of Joachim Ronning and Espen Sandberg, the Norwegian directors whose film "Kon-Tiki" was nominated for an Academy Award. The new film again follows the misadventures of captain Jack Sparrow, this time around giving him a new foe, and some old and new allies to combat this supernatural entity. Among the new allies are the son of Will Turner, who's trying to break the curse that holds his father captive. Also on a quest is the young Carina Smyth, an astronomer, who is looking for a map that can lead her to finding answers she needs. Their new foe, is a Spanish captain by the name of Salazar, who battled Jack when he was younger, and who is now a half dead creature, seeking vengeance across the oceans. It's up to Jack and his allies, to discover Poseidon's trident and eradicate all curses from the oceans.
As with every franchise in existence, the audiences come to see them for familiarity, and for extravagant set pieces, that provide entertainment and distraction (just like every single Marvel feature). The "Pirates of the Caribbean" franchise, has never been a particularly engaging one: it has been mostly memorable because of how Johnny Depp has subverted and given a new dimension to a character that on paper was a simply eccentric pirate. As the series has continued, and the plotlines have become more and more convoluted, and the budgets have ballooned, that has meant grander visual effects, bigger stunts, usually to cover up whatever holes the stories may have. This film in particular checks all of those points: it has massive set pieces, truly fantastic visual effects,  and sadly that's mostly of whatever positive elements it has going for it. The actors, including Johnny Depp are swallowed whole by the digital spectacle that surrounds them, as beautiful and as extravagant as they may be. As much as a well oiled machine this is, the film lacks a distinct point of view, and the extremely talented actors Javier Bardem and Geoffrey Rush, have very little to do (and sadly both the young leads are terrible). This is a film that is quickly forgotten, and is mostly salvageable for some humorous moments that Johnny Depp manages to create.