As a day one Pirates of The Caribbean fan I was a bit dismissive when Disney announced a 5th and final entry to the series. The 4th movie “On Stranger Tides” felt like a stain on the series’ legacy after 3 incredible movies. Blackbeard failed to capture my attention the way Davy Jones did. Seeing The Flying Dutchman emerge from the depths with its cursed crew gave me goosebumps every time and its captain was a force of terror. To me, the soul of Pirates of The Caribbean was lost with On Stranger Tides, so when I sat down to watch Dead Men Tell No Tales, I braced myself for a mediocre send off to one of my most beloved characters in recent cinema history.
The movie opens up with all the action and comedy you can expect out of the Pirates franchise. The first set piece features a very exaggerated chase that involves many physics defying feats that made me look at the screen side eyed with disbelief and mild disappointment. I get that this is a fantasy movie but really?
The antagonist in Dead Men Tell No Tales is Captain Armando Salazar who shares some very interesting and surprising ties with Jack Sparrow. The movie’s highlight is how it tells the origin story of Jack Sparrow. I felt a level of compassion for Jack that I hadn’t before. We witness not just Jack as a youth, but the circumstances that create the pirate “Jack Sparrow”. These moments coupled with the knowledge that this film will be his final voyage created a sense of melancholy and anxiety as each scene unfolded.
If I were to rank the films from best to worst I would say;
- The Curse Of The Black Pearl
- At World’s End
- Dead Men Tell No Tales
- Dead Man’s Chest
- On Stranger Tides
Captain Salazar just isn’t as cool to see on screen as Davy Jones, but it he definitely represents a menacing force whenever he appears and is a worthy adversary to Jack. The movie definitely brings the story of Jack Sparrow to a close and ties up several loose ends left open from the previously films. I left the theater very satisfied and anxious for the blu ray release to complete my collection.
Pirates of The Caribbean: Dead Men Tell No Tales is definitely a movie you should see in the theater as soon as you have the chance. Fans of the series will not regret it one bit, even if it doesn’t surpass its predecessors.