‘Dead Men’ tie up loose ends

Photo courtesy of Disney.

“Pirates of the Caribbean: Dead Men Tell No Tales” is the fifth movie in the “Pirates of the Caribbean” series. Most of the characters from the previous movies return, with the addition of a few new characters, Henry Turner, the “spawn” of Will Turner and Elizabeth Swann, Carina Smyth and a new villain — Captain Salazar.

In essence, the movie tied up any loose ends moviegoers didn’t even know existed. While the movie had references to previous movies, along with returning characters, “Dead Men Tell No Tales” can still be watched as a standalone movie. Questions viewers would have never thought to ask arose, such as how Jack Sparrow became a captain or the family life of Hector Barbossa. The ending also revealed a plot twist that was probably meant to be surprising but turned out to be cliché.

In keeping with the aesthetic of all the “Pirates of the Caribbean” movies, this movie also managed to mix both drama and comedy, with a plot full of perfect timing. The movie also reiterated that the common thread with all pirates is that everyone knows and hates Jack Sparrow. Johnny Depp’s performances as the obnoxious, drunk but still fully-functioning captain continued to entertain.

It was nice to see Will Turner and Swann again, although their appearances were brief. The new hero and heroine characters, Henry Turner and Smyth, didn’t surpass the bar Will Turner and Swann set as part of the title characters in the previous movies, although the actors played their roles well. Henry Turner and Smyth also did not play as much of a significant role in this installation as Will Turner and Swann did in the previous ones. The characters were sidekicks for the most part, in contributing to the demise of Captain Salazar. The movie also tried to thrust a romance into the plot, even though it didn’t need one.

While the movie wasn’t the greatest in the series, it wasn’t the worst in terms of storyline. It didn’t leave any major plot holes, but it also didn’t really add anything to the series except backstory. The intense visual effects of ghost ships and dead creatures were mesmerizing and terrifying to watch, and the cast played the roles given to them well. Overall, it was entertaining to watch, despite the thin connection to storylines from earlier movies.

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