Disney’s Pirates of the Caribbean Dead Men Tell No Tales was an insanely unnecessary sequel that no one was asking for. For me this franchise was losing steam after the first one, Curse of the Black Pearl and had pretty much lost it all by the end of the third one, At World’s End. So I was genuinely shocked when they announced On Stranger Tides and just plain confused when Dead Men Tell No Tales was announced… This movie isn’t terrible, it has its moments but there’s just not much to it.
The biggest problem I had with Dead Men Tell No Tales is the structure of this movie. The plot of the movie doesn’t seem to have a structure that can be easily followed. Scenes just sort of happen in succession and there is no usual three act structure of a beginning, middle and end. As I think back I honestly couldn’t really tell when those transitions actually occur and that’s a problem because it doesn’t build up the climax very well and kills the flow of the movie when you’re just seeing random things happen to the characters that don’t contribute to moving the plot or the character arcs forward. Without getting into spoilers there are many events and moments in this movie towards the end that seems to come out of nowhere and don’t feel earned at all. The acting in this movie was in short not very good apart from Javier Bardem who was a great villain as usual. The three main leads were just boring and unconvincing in most of their scenes. Brenton Thwaites and Kaya Scodelario were so flat it kind of killed it for me most of the time and Johnny Depp’s Capt. Jack Sparrow is now a weird unlikable caricature of the original character and more resembles a drunken hobo most of the time. I often found myself asking “why is he even in this movie?” He’s not really driving the plot, things just sort of happen around him instead of him leading the action. I actually asked that same question about a lot of elements in this film. For example the British navy, they were almost completely pointless and were just put in there because “it’s not a Pirates movie without a dickish British military guy.” I did enjoy the action set pieces those were fun to watch and I really liked the resolution to the original trilogy’s story that it gave.
Dead Men Tell No Tales was not a good movie. It can be an entertaining to watch but it’s not very satisfying. Between the awkward acting and no semblance of story structure it makes for just visual eye candy. They really should stop making Pirates of the Caribbean movies and lay it to rest. Maybe pick up another Disneyland ride and make a movie out of it like the Matterhorn or Star Tours that ride looks like it has a lot of potential to be an incredible space opera adventure! Let me know what ride you’d like to see become a movie!