Sometimes we like a movie so much we watch terrible sequel after terrible sequel hoping for a spark of the original to shine through and reignite that feeling. I personally have many. Pirates of the Caribbean: Curse of the Black Pearl is one of them. Sure its two sequels (Yes, I said “two.” I know it’s technically three but just because studios break up a single story into multiple movies doesn’t mean I recognize them as separate sequels.) were kind of fun to watch but they lacked the magic of the first. Needless to say, I keep coming back. Does Pirates of the Caribbean: Dead Men Tell No Tales contain that elusive spark? Only one way to find out.
Once again, a cursed sailor seeks revenge on Jack Sparrow, Johnny Depp (Cry Baby….that’s right Cry Baby). After hearing Salazar’s, Javier Bardem (No Country for Old Men), story I hardly see how it’s Jack’s fault, but I digress. This time, the magical artifact everyone seems to need is Poseidon’s Trident. What follows is typical boy meets girl romance, Disney’s ability to kill dozens with almost no blood on screen, and of course a healthy dose of Jack’s cartoonishly good luck. Throw in a cameo or two (sorry Paul McCarthy but Keith Richards makes a better pirate) and a couple of heart touching moments and you have all the ingredients of a Pirates move.
It’s fun. That may be over simplified but for this type of movie there might not be a better compliment. Nobody is going to see Pirates of the Caribbean: Dead Men Tell No Tales because they expect to see Moonlight. It doesn’t have to be “great,” it only has to be fun. It also has much more of the feel of the original than the other sequels had. Fast paced and exciting, Dead Men Tell No Tales keeps your attention from start to finish. Full of “chuckle” humor, more than laugh out loud funny, and the fun type of fear where you know your safe and end up laughing after the scare passes, the newest addition to the Pirates Franchise is, once again, like watching a ride at Disney.
Jack’s antics are a bit over done. Sequels always try to up the ante but sometimes enough is enough. Even in a movie with cursed pirates and magic artifacts, an entire building being dragged though the streets of town is a bit far-fetched for my liking. Moments included for nostalgia seem much more like fan service than having any actual importance to the overall story. Finally, I’m getting tired of post-credit scenes teasing future films. Sure I’m already kind of excited for a 6th film but, unless it’s already in production (it isn’t), Disney has me wanting something that might never happen.