Before Disney launched the Marvel Cinematic Universe, their premier movie franchise was Pirates Of The Caribbean - a series of old-school pirate movies enlivened by modern effects, films that originally started as homages to the dead genre before exploding into a series of formidable blockbusters.
Everything seemed to be over after the lackluster fourth installment, Pirates Of The Caribbean: On Stranger Tides, failed to meet expectations. Yet Disney could not bear to bid farewell to Johnn Depp's Jack Sparrow and the mystical perils of the seven seas. Now, the first teaser for the fifth and long delayed Pirates Of The Caribbean: Dead Men Tell No Tales has been released and it promises a return to form for the franchise.
Check out the first teaser:
Return Of The Dead Pirates
This first Pirates Of The Caribbean: Dead Men Tell No Tales teaser feels more like a scene ripped straight out of the movie than a bunch vignettes edited into a short trailer, but it's more than enough to suggest that Disney learned from past mistakes.
Audiences are given a good introduction to Jack Sparrow's latest enemy (and apparently old foe), Javier Bardem's character Captain Salazar. According to the movie's synopsis, Salazar escapes the Devil's Triangle (aka the Pirates version of the Bermuda Triangle) after what may have felt like a lifetime. Now undead and angrier than he ever was, Captain Salazar and his crew vow to kill every single pirate who dares sail the seas, including Jack Sparrow. Sparrow's only hope is the Trident of Poseidon, a legendary artifact that grants its wielder control of the seas.
In addition to Johnny Depp, Orlando Bloom, Geoffery Rush, Kevin McNally and Keith Richards will return to reprise their roles as Will Turner, Captain Barbossa, Gibbs and Captain Teague respectively. Dead Men Tell No Tales is directed by Joachim Rønning and Espen Sandberg, the team behind the European adventure and period piece Kon-Tiki.
Perhaps the biggest loss for the franchise is composer Hans Zimmer, who stepped away to attend to other commitments. Zimmer was responsible for Pirates' iconic score, and his absence was sorely felt in On Stranger Tides. The Pacific composer Geoff Zanelli will replace Zimmer for Dead Men Tell No Tales.
Back To Basics
For sharp-eyed fans, Dead Men Tell No Tales' teaser seems to be hinting at a plot similar to that of The Curse Of The Black Pearl thanks to its main adversary: an eccentric ghost pirate with an undead army and a murderous grudge against Sparrow. In most cases, a late sequel imitating its successful predecessors is a bad move. For Pirates Of The Caribbean, this is actually the best thing that could happen to the franchise.
Pirates Of The Caribbean's sequels were criticized for straying too far from the first movie's vision. The Curse Of The Black Pearl caught audiences' imagination and adoration thanks to its clever mix of an epic pirate adventure and a horror movie. Its sequels nobly tried to deepen the plot with a myth arc revolving around Davy Jones (Bill Nighy) and later on the Fountain Of Youth, but they never recaptured the simplicity and effectiveness of the first film by accidentally making things more complicated than necessary.
It's possible that Dead Men Tell No Tales will do what Star Wars: The Force Awakens did for the Star Wars franchise, recreating the magic of the aged franchise by leaning heavily on the first installment while adding the best sequel elements. The Force Awakens reminded fans and newcomers about what made Star Wars iconic before further sequels do new things. Hopefully, Dead Men Tell No Tales does the same for the wayward Pirates Of The Caribbean series.