This weekend brings two big movies: a pricy Disney franchise that has been on hiatus for six years, and an R-rated adaptation of a once-popular television series. Knowing that Disney’s blockbuster is going to dominate the box office, the latter opened on Thursday in order to get one full day without the competition. Considering that the TV adaptation cost more than one might expect, it’s going to need that extra day.
The wider of the two releases is ‘Pirates of the Caribbean: Dead Men Tell No Tales‘, the fifth entry in the Disneyland ride-based series, on 4,276 screens. Comic relief characters are never supposed to play leads, but you can’t tell that to Johnny Depp. This round, his Jack Sparrow is once again out for himself. While looking for the legendary all-powerful trident that was once owned by Poseidon, Sparrow crosses paths with yet another enemy from his past (Javier Bardem). With ten years having passed since the events of ‘At World’s End‘ left Orlando Bloom bound to the sea, his character is allowed above water now and somehow fits into this new story.
The ‘Pirates’ franchise lost my attention with each of its awful sequels, but since this one claims to be the final installment, I feel like I need to see it through to the end. Early reviews are mostly negative, so ‘Dead Men Tell No Tales’ seems rather hopeless. At least we can give this series (for now) a proper burial at sea.
Thursday saw Seth Gordon’s ‘Baywatch‘ do a slow-motion jog onto 3,400 screens. Taking on the crude R-rated comedic flavor of the tongue-in-cheek ‘Jump Street‘ movies, this big-screen adaptation stars Dwayne “The Rock” Johnson (who’s on fire right now) and Zac Efron (who has proven that he’s only valuable in R-rated comedies). Johnson’s character is a seasoned professional lifeguard who has an oil/water relationship with a new hot-headed lifeguard played by Efron. Surrounded by beautiful busty co-workers (Alexandria Daddario, Priyanka Chopra, Kelly Rohrbach, Ilfenesh Hadera), the group must foil a criminal’s master plan that puts every beachgoer at risk. Like the ‘Jump Street’ movies, ‘Baywatch’ is said to be hilarious, despite the fluffy story.
In limited release is a four-hour Grateful Dead documentary called ‘Long Strange Trip‘. Produced by Martin Scorsese, the film tells the most complete story of The Dead via new interviews and never-before-seen footage. Word has it that even if you’re not a fan of The Grateful Dead, you’ll appreciate this great doc.