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Wednesday, June 14, 2017

Pirates of the Caribbean: Salazar's Revenge

Director:   Joachim Ronning, Espen Sandberg  Lead Cast: Johnny Depp, Javier Bardem, Kaya Scodelario, Brenton Thwaites  Screenwriter:      Jeff Nathanson, Terry Rossio, Ted Elliot  Producer:  Jerry Bruckheimer  Editor:  Roger Balton, Leigh Folsom Boyd  Musical Director:  Geoff  Zanelli  Genre: Fantasy-Adventure  Cinematographer: Paul Cameron  Distributor: Walt Disney  Location: United States  Running Time:   129 minutes
Technical assessment: 2
Moral assessment: 2.5
CINEMA rating: A14
MTRCB rating: PG
The fifth installment of the popular franchise, Pirates of the Carribean: Salazar’s Revenge take an all-new adventure with the usual not-so-lucky Capt. Jack Sparrow (Johnny Depp) who feels the winds of ill-fortune blowing even more strongly when deadly ghost sailors led by his old nemesis, the evil Capt. Salazar (Javier Bardem), escape from the Devil's Triangle and are now after him.  Jack's only hope of survival lies in seeking out the legendary Trident of Poseidon—but to find it, he must forge an uneasy alliance with a brilliant and beautiful astronomer Carina (Kaya Scodelario) and a headstrong young man Henry Turner (Brenton Thawaites), son of  Jack’s old associates Will (Orlando Bloom) and Elizabeth Turner (Keira Knightley). Henry is out to free his father from the curse of the Flying Dutchman. Jack, Carina and Henry sail together to find the Trident of Poseidon for different reasons. Will they be able get there and survive amidst the rage of Jack’s enemies?  
Pirates of the Caribbean: Salazar’s Revenge suffers from the usual problems of convoluted storytelling without a compelling center. The point-of-view is confusing from the very start as it introduces the new and young characters Henry and Carina. With the presence of these two, it seems that Jack Sparrow’s presence is just coincidental and does not go beyond from being merely functional. The characterization seems uninspired with most of them bordering on the mechanical. There is no depth of emotional development or human dimension besides superhuman beings and ghosts who appear to be more powerful than the living—result is a poorly developed story with a spectacular backdrop of visual effects and production design. Even the action sequences appear to be as tired as the franchise with no more new tricks and antics to offer other than extending it for the sake of introducing younger characters. Lighting seems to be dark at most times, making some scenes hard to understand. But then the film still tries very hard to live-up to its original appeal—romantic, naughty, action-packed, mysterious, dark yet has something good to say. Perhaps it just pales in comparison to its predecessors.
Pirates of the Caribbean: Salazar’s Revenge revolves around the unfailing love of a son for his father which is later on compensated by a father’s sacrificial love for his daughter. Although these are not attributed to the main character, Jack Sparrow, it is the fuel of the story though not necessarily well-developed. There are questionable scenes of adultery and violence that may not be suitable for the very young followers of the franchise. Such depictions of immorality are easily dismissed as not central to the conflict. However, given that the franchise is made popular by its lead—a drunkard, womanizer, criminal,  a pirate with no apparent redeeming value aside from being supportive and instrumental for others to achieve their pure intentions—the film remains on the borderline of being morally disturbing. Not to mention the graphic violence with a certain degree of blood and gore in most fight scenes which might desensitize young, impressionable minds. CINEMA deems the film as fit only for audiences 14 years old and above.  Parents are cautioned to guide their children while watching this film as its genre will always be misleading as wholesome entertainment.




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