Pirates of the Caribbean: Dead Men Tell No Tales (2017)
Directed by Joachim Rønning & Espen Sandberg
Mutiny! For the second time in as many years, my girlfriend Angela has hijacked my blog to provide her brilliant thoughts, this time on the newest installment in the blockbuster “Pirates of the Caribbean” franchise. Enjoy!
Hey everyone—I’m back with a guest review of “Pirates of the Caribbean: Dead Men Tell No Tales.” Strap in, because I have a lot of opinions and a lot of bad pirate puns…it’s anchors away from here!
A lot has happened to our favorite crew members since the last movie was released in 2011. The fifth installment of the Pirates of the Caribbean series sets sail with an introduction of Will Turner’s (Orlando Bloom) young son, Henry (Lewis McGowan) as he searches for his father. What he finds is a curse, one that adult Henry (Brenton Thwaites) is on a journey to break. To do this, Henry enlists the help of Carina Smyth (Kaya Scodelario), a young astronomer accused of witchcraft, to help him find Poseidon’s trident, which can break all curses of the sea. Henry needs all hands on deck, so he tracks down Jack Sparrow (Johnny Depp), who he believes can help him find the trident. Along the way, the crew encounters Armando Salazar (Javier Bardem), one of Jack Sparrow’s old enemies who leads a spooky ship of ghostly Spanish Royal Navy soldiers on a mission to kill every pirate in the ocean, including Jack Sparrow.
In typical “Pirates of the Caribbean” fashion, “Dead Men Tell No Tales” is packed with sword fighting, Jack Sparrow drinking, and a love story cute enough to make us all seasick. The soundtrack will also put some serious wind in your sails (I’m listening to it as I type). With a run-time of just over two hours, there was never a moment when I was bored during this movie. The first Pirates movie will remain the best in my opinion, but this is a close second with respect to plot and entertainment value.
That being said, I do have some issues with this movie, and the series overall, so if you don’t like feminist rants, you can abandon ship here.
The fact that Disney has yet to let two women share the spotlight and work together in one of these movies frustrates me. It’s still a man’s ship, and Elizabeth Swan (Keira Knightley) only makes a small appearance as the domesticated wife of Will Turner. Did all her badassery dry up when she had kids? No. I’d like to ask Disney why they only permit one woman to be courageous at a time. Carina Smyth’s compelling character demonstrates strength, intelligence and poise throughout the movie, but when the moment comes to save the day, she isn’t physically strong enough to do so. I’m sorry Disney, what?? Even after having outsmarted all the men in the film, Carina still isn’t the one credited with saving the day in the end. It’s enough to make any feminist want to walk the plank.
Yet, despite some problematic depictions of women, if you’re a true “Pirates” fan, “Dead Men Tell No Tales” is not to be missed.