In theaters this weekend: ‘Pirates of the Caribbean 5,’ which no one needs more than Johnny Depp

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  • June 15, 2017
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New this week:

Pirates of the Caribbean: DEAD MEN TELL NO TALES

Johnny Depp‘s stormy career seeks safe harbor this weekend in Pirates of the Caribbean: Dead Men Tell No Tales (PG-13), a sequel no one demanded more than its star.

Who can blame Depp for playing Capt. Jack Sparrow a fifth time when three would be plenty? The fourth, forgettable chapter On Stranger Tides was the actor’s last bona fide hit . . . back in 2011. Since then, Depp appeared in 13 consecutive box office and/or critical flops.

Depp’s highest grosser after On Stranger Tides — selling half as many tickets — is 2014’s Into the Woods, when he showed up as the Wolf for one meh scene. Depp at the center of Transcendence, Black Mass, Dark Shadows, The Lone Ranger and especially Mortdecai caused moviegoers to stay away in droves. Forbes named Depp as Hollywood’s most overpaid actor for two consecutive years.

That messy divorce from Amber Heard didn’t help Depp’s image.

So, to the rescue comes Capt. Jack Sparrow, a character who coincidentally was introduced in 2003 as he stepped off a sinking ship.

Dead Men Tell No Tales sends the woozy pirate in search of Poseidon’s trident. It’s the only weapon capable of defeating Jack’s rival, the dread and undead pirate Salazar (Javier Bardem). Jack sees his zombie spirit and raises Captain Barbossa (Geoffrey Rush), whose afterlife continues.

The franchise recruits a couple of new young lovers at sea, Brenton Thwaites and Kaya Scodelario, not exactly household names. They replace Keira Knightley and Orlando Bloom, who briefly appear to pass the youth-swoon torch.

Review: The new ‘Baywatch’ movie is basically about hot people in swimsuits

In theaters: our Top 5

Current movies recommended by the Tampa Bay Times:

1 Alien: Covenant: Can a movie contain too much Michael Fassbender? Not a chance. (Full review)

2 Chuck: Liev Schreiber, above, plays Chuck Wepner, real-life inspiration for Rocky Balboa. (Full review)

3 The Lovers: Married couple (Debra Winger, Tracy Letts) fall back in love. Maybe. (Full story)

4 Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2: Marvel’s anti-superhero franchise gets bigger. (Full review)

5 The Fate of the Furious: It’s raining cars, hallelujah, in another lap around the blockbuster track. (Full review)

 

ONE NIGHT INDIE: ART IN THE CITY

Homelessness has inspired filmmaker Jabaar Edmond since 2007, when St. Petersburg’s tent cities were torn down by police, leading to his debut documentary Will Work for Food.

Edmond’s first feature Art in the City takes a fictional approach to the same real life issue. A down-and-out war veteran with PTSD (Cranstan Cumberbatch) finds redemption through artistic expression and a mysterious stranger (Stephanie Porto).

Art in the City gets a red carpet premiere Tuesday at Studio@620 in St. Petersburg. Edmond will lead a Q&A session after the 7 p.m. screening. Tickets are $10 at thestudioat620.org.

Edmond said recently that Art in the City sprang from conversations through the years with St. Petersburg’s homeless residents.

“Homelessness isn’t what I imagined it was,” he said, ” . . . someone not working, drunk or a druggie. These people have extraordinary stories. They’re not all old; some are young. A lot of them are veterans, fresh off the battlefield. That’s how Cranstan’s role comes in. We wanted to challenge what people think when they think of homelessness.”

Filmed in St. Petersburg’s homeless hubs with backdrop bursts of artistic creativity, Art in the City is intended to convey a positive message.

“We like to say St. Pete is a co-star, the art and the murals,” Edmond said. “I don’t want people to think it’s a negative jab at the city because (homelessness is) a controversial subject here. But it’s something we must talk about.”

 

UPCOMING RELEASES

(Dates subject to change)

June 2: Wonder Woman; Transformers: The Last Knight

June 9: Megan Leavey

June 16: Rough Night; All Eyez on Me

June 30: The Beguiled; The House

In theaters this weekend: ‘Pirates of the Caribbean 5,’ which no one needs more than Johnny Depp 05/24/17

[Last modified: Sunday, May 28, 2017 3:28pm]

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