We’re about two and a half weeks away from the launch of Pirates of the Caribbean: On Stranger Tides, which promises to return the swashbuckling blockbuster franchise to its roots – namely the wacky antics and adventures of Captain Jack Sparrow (Johnny Depp) – instead of getting lost in convoluted subplots.

The first clip released from On Stranger Tides does just that, focusing on Depp’s Sparrow as he behaves like the human equivalent of Bugs Bunny, wreaking havoc (and dropping sly quips) on any figure or body of authority around him.

Disney’s fourth Pirates of the Caribbean movie picks up where the third film, At World’s End, left off – with Sparrow, having been confronted with his own mortality and the changing world around him, setting off to locate the legendary Fountain of Youth. Before he can, however, he’s captured by the forces of King George II (Richard Griffiths), who wants Captain Jack to find the Fountain for… well, himself, basically.

As you can imagine, Sparrow is “disinclined to acquiesce his request,” and sets off to escape in what early descriptions peg as a Charlie Chaplin-inspired chase throughout the streets of London. This first clip – which also features an all-too familiar face, now working for the King – offers a glimpse at the sequence.

Check out that scene (via Yahoo! Movies) below:

Much like a good chunk of the footage unveiled in the second Transformers 3 trailer, this clip from On Stranger Tides hints at the steady hand Rob Marshall employed while shooting the film with 3D cameras. This brief action clip is quite well-constructed overall, and I suspect it will actually look all the better when viewed up on the big screen, in either 2D or 3D.

For more Pirates goodness, check out the new featurette and TV spot below:

As was mentioned in our 2011 Summer Movie Preview, the fourth Pirates flick should make for a rousing time at the theater if Marshall and Co. follow through on their promise to keep the narrative tighter, while still managing that nice balancing act of adventure and humor that the first installment in the series pulled off.

That’s not to say the last two Pirates movies were terrible or didn’t have their charms; if you’re anything like the Screen Rant crew, however, then you found the task of sitting through the second and third installments more than a bit of a chore at times. So a more energetically-paced, less bloated followup will be much appreciated.

Pirates of the Caribbean: On Stranger Tides sets sail in 2D, 3D, and IMAX 3D theaters this month on May 20th.

Source: Yahoo! Movies