Bil’s rating (out of 5): B.5. USA, 2017. Walt Disney Pictures, Jerry Bruckheimer Films, Infinitum Nihil. Story by Jeff Nathanson,Terry Rossio, Screenplay by Jeff Nathanson, based on characters created by Ted Elliott, Terry Rossio, Stuart Beattie, Jay Wolper. Cinematography by Paul Cameron. Produced by Jerry Bruckheimer. Music by Geoff Zanelli. Production Design by Nigel Phelps. Costume Design by Penny Rose. Film Editing by Roger Barton, Leigh Folsom Boyd.
At this point it feels like Johnny Depp whips this franchise out whenever he needs to renovate his house, which at least explains the soulless nature of this fifth entry in the Pirates canon. Brenton Thwaites provides sufficient though not overwhelming charm as the son of Orlando Bloom‘s Will Turner, devastated by his father’s being cursed to roam the seas forever on the enchanted Flying Dutchman and desperate to break the curse. Knowing that the acquisition of Poseidon’s Trident will break the spells of all who are cursed at sea, Thwaites goes in search of the object despite having been warned that it is a myth that does not exist. To accomplish the deed, he ropes in our favourite drunken lout Jack Sparrow (Depp) and is pursued across the Caribbean by the ghostly evil of Salazar (Javier Bardem) and the vengeful Barbosa (Geoffrey Rush). Thankfully he also has the companionship of a spirited lass (Kaya Scodelario, poorly filling Keira Knightley’s shoes) on the voyage, and the crew go from one plot point to the next of this tiresome adventure that is just a pale rehash of all that has gone before. Depp’s performance has degraded into merely a collection of double takes and hip-swings this many sequels in, the inspiration is completely gone, while the visual effects and set design are serviceable. The previous Pirates films were a mess but they were at least well-produced and committed messes that felt like riding the Disney world ride; this one is more like waiting in line and wondering why you didn’t pick Space Mountain instead. Golshifteh Farahani is vastly underused as a sorceress.