Wednesday, May 24, 2017

Pirates of the Caribbean: Salazar's Revenge - Movie Review

By: Hamza Shafique

Finally, a cinematic experience worth writing about, Joachim Ronning/Espen Sandberg’s “Pirates of the Caribbean: Salazar's Revenge” is like a roller-coaster ride. It starts with a high note with the main antagonist Salazar’s introduction and stays at the same note throughout with few ups and down along the way and finishes at even higher note. As we know, throughout the roller-coaster ride people are high on emotions and  similar was the case with me for 129 minutes throughout this fantasy world of pirates. Story, screenplay, treatment, direction and visuals all work superbly well together for this one. And thanks to the IMAX technology, it became one of the best swashbuckler film experience for me.

The main treasure element that brings everyone together in this installment is Poseidon’s magical trident that holds key to all the curses of the oceans. Henry Turner (played by Brenton Thwaites), son of Will Turner & Elizabeth Swann, is after trident to release his father from the curse of Flying Dutchman as we saw in last installment, Carina Smyth(played by Kaya Scodelario), is after the trident as she believes the map to trident is written by his Father as a clue to help her find him, Captain Jack Sparrow(played by Johnny Depp) is after Trident as this is the only thing that can protect him against maniacal undead pirate hunter Armando Salazar (played by Javier Bardem), so they all set on journey to fight trident while being chased by Salazar and his army of undead. In between we do have Geoffrey Rush reprising his role of Hector Barbossa as well. Rest you can find on the big screen this weekend.
“Pirates of the Caribbean: Salazar's Revenge” is an exhausting experience and I mean that in a good way. Every element is super charged and will keep viewers fully engrossed, on the edge of their seat. Screenplay is very well written and flows seamlessly. Humor is so good that most of the time every one was laughing out loud in the cinema. There are so many comic moments of epic proportions especially the initial bank robbery scene takes the situational comedy experience to next level. I haven’t laughed this loud and for this long in a long time.
Action sequences are equally engaging and new. Magical elements are used very well and I especially loved the ghost shark’s scene, it literally made me jump out of my seat and I noticed I wasn’t the only with this reaction.
Finally, a film with the visuals where human eye can observe things properly, I am tired of dark grey visual treatment of movies, this one is so well done that even the night scenes are crisp and one can enjoy all the details/expressions properly. Graphics also equally support the visual experience and display superior craftsmanship.

Swashbuckler movies are usually not big on performance but this one has that covered as well with believable performances from the principal cast. Johnny Depp as Jack Sparrow has his usual carefree and non-serious attitude dripping from screen. Brenton Thwaites as Henry Turner portrays an ambitious boy accurately. Kaya Scodelario’s performance as Carina Smyth will remind u of the Keira Knightley’s sincerity. Javier Bardem as Salazar is just perfect; he depicts terror in its true form and you can feel it whenever he is on screen. Geoffrey Rush as Captain Hector Barbossa improves as the film goes on and by the climax reach his prime as well.
I wanted to give 4 stars but deducted half star only because of the final showdown sequence between Jack and Salazar, this is a very over the top, high on content, intense scene and will make you miss the simplicity of Jack and Barbossa’s comical moonlight sword fight sequence from first installment. Sometimes less is more and when you have your audience throughout the film on a high note, than a simple impactful scene is all you need to end the experience.
I believe watching it in IMAX also enhanced the experience and I will suggest you all to head to IMAX for equally engaging experience. I go with 3.5 stars.
In the end, I want to thank Novo Cinemas UAE for inviting me to the premier and giving me the opportunity to witness this in IMAX prior to the worldwide release

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