Studio: Disney (2 hr. 9 min)
Plot: Ghost sailors escape from the Devil's Triangle and are bent on killing Capt. Jack Sparrow.
Cast: Johnny Depp, Javier Bardem, Kaya Scodelario, Geoffrey Rush, Brenton Thwaites, Orlando Bloom
Bottom Line: *1/2
By Laurence Washington
This is the last one right?
“Pirates 5” is enjoyable in spots, but it really offers nothing new.
So is this the last one… Right?
Here’s why the series can probably be safely retired. The storyline is a retread of the past “Pirates” films with Capt. Jack Sparrow (Johnny Depp) slurring his way through the film with a bottle of rum. A convincing portrayal of a seafaring scoundrel offered by Depp during the first “Pirates” film that earned him an Oscar nomination. But on the fifth outing Capt. Jack’s shtick has become a little tiresome, cringe worthy and boring.
“Pirates 5” has a ton of energy, and as with most contemporary blockbusters, is loaded with CGI. However, it lacks the uniqueness and surprise of the first film. “Pirates of the Caribbean (’03)” was 25 minutes too long. But what 25 minutes would you remove? It was a terrific film with no false moves. I can easily tell you where to delete 25 minutes in “Pirates 5,” so the audience can get out early.
Be that as it may, Capt. Jack and his archenemy Capt. Barbossa (Geoffrey Rush) are in search of the Trident of Poseidon, a three-pronged spear that reverses sea curses. Capt. Jack is being pursued by Capt. Armando Salazar (Javier Bardem), a revengeful pirate and his undead crew. So as you might have guessed a curse remover would come in mighty handy. In addition, newcomer to the series, Brenton Thwaites plays Henry Turner, the son of Will Turner (Orlando Bloom) who needs the curse lifted so his father will be freed from the curse of Flying Dutchmen.
In all fairness, the Pirates franchise has a presold audience, and fans of the first film who want to see the original characters Johnny Depp, Geoffrey Rush and Orlando Bloom assembled yet again will enjoy it for that fact. As for the rest of us, we’re ready to abandon ship and move on.
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Printed in the June 25, 2017 - July 8, 2017 edition.