The “final installment” of Pirates of the Caribbean, Dead Men Tell No Tales starts with a rip roaring adventure and ends with a heartfelt reunion of sorts by the original main characters. When it first began the buzz was “how can you make a movie from an attraction in a Disney park” with some critics even going so far as saying “it will never sail”. Well that was 14 years ago and the franchise still continues with this last hurrah and it’s probably the best sequel yet.
As if he didn’t have enough trouble, Captain Jack Sparrow (Johnny Depp) finds himself with his head on the guillotine and no chance to get out of the mess he’s got himself into. Also scheduled to die is the lovely Carina Smyth (Kaya Scodelario) an astronomer accused of being a witch. But, a suitor, British Naval Officer Henry Turner (Brenton Thwaites), has taken an interest in Carina and he’s sadly there to witness her execution.
At the very moment the two are about to die, one on the gallows the other kneeling at the guillotine, Sparrow’s shipmates lead by Gibbs (Kevin McNally) are stealing the Caribbean town’s bank. Not just any strong box but the biggest and most tamper proof safe on any island. But as luck would have it or all’s well that ends well, Jack finds himself “non-beheaded” and on his way to freedom.
In pursuit of Jack is Captain Salazar (Javier Bardem) out for revenge and a way to free himself and his crew from the watery grave they wander. But, not to fast as Captain Barbossa (Geoffrey Rush) has something to settle with the drunken Captain Jack and he’ll stop at nothing to put him in a grave. All this and a search for Poseidon’s trident that has all the answers to this riddle of death and the stars.
All this happens in the first fifteen minutes of the 2 hour movie. Directors Joachim Ronning and Espen Sandberg take a stab at their first time with a major motion picture and a $230 million budget. That said, they must have used every penny of it as the film has amazing cinematography, CGI and sets with some new costumes that must have topped off their spending. But, we fans and action adventure lovers could care less as the two novices pulled off one of the better Pirates of the five films.
Oh and if you check out Espen Sandberg’s filmography at IMDb you’ll see something very strange indeed, a Pirates of the Caribbean 6? What will this one be called “Yo Ho Ho and a Bottle of Rum”?
Johnny Depp slides into his Pirate garb, waddles around as a drunk and shows Sparrow’s providence as he gets out of one scrape after another. He’s a meddler and a thief trying to keep his head out of the water and attempting to be united with what he loves the most, the Black Pearl. Depp has had a lot of practice with 4 winners and you can see that there’s a lot of magic in his performance.
With the advent of two new characters Kaya Scodelario as Carina and Brenton Thwaites as Henry Turner, the drunken Captain Sparrow has new subjects to show how he’s the numbskull of the seas. Filling the void of not having Elizabeth Swann (Keira Knightley) to kick around and add the female fem fatale, Scodelario does of very good job of filling her shoes. As for Thwaites, he’s new meat for the ladies who accompany their beau’s to see the “final chapter” of the drunken sailor.
Pirates of the Caribbean: Dead Men Tell No Tales has been rated PG-13 by the MPAA for sequences of adventure violence, and some suggestive content. If your pre-teens have seen the other 4 in the series, the content is more of the same as to the violence.
FINAL ANALYSIS: A very nice addition to the Pirates franchise and one not to miss if you are a fan or just would like a wild ride on the seas.
Specifications and additional video information:
Cast: Johnny Depp, Geoffrey Rush, Javier Bardem, Brenton Thwaites, Kaya Scodelario, Orlando Bloom, Kevin McNally, Golshifteh Farahani, Stephen Graham, Keira Knightley, Martin Klebba, Paul McCartney.
Director: Joachim Ronning and Espen Sandberg
MPAA Rating: PG-13 for sequences of adventure violence, and some suggestive content
Genre: Action, Adventure, Fantasy
Running Time: 2 hrs. 9 min.
Release Date: May 25, 2017
Distributed by: Walt Disney Pictures
Released in: 2D, 3D and IMAX 3D
The comments within this review are the critic’s expressed opinions.