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The Pirates! In an Adventure with Scientists!

Family . Comedy . Animation . Adventure

In The Pirates! Band of Misfits, Hugh Grant stars in his first animated role as the luxuriantly bearded Pirate Captain – a boundlessly enthusiastic, if somewhat less-than-successful, terror of the High Seas. With a rag-tag crew at his side (Martin Freeman, Brendan Gleeson, Russell Tovey, and Ashley Jensen), and seemingly blind to the impossible odds stacked against him, the Captain has one dream: to beat his bitter rivals Black Bellamy (Jeremy Piven) and Cutlass Liz (Salma Hayek) to the much coveted Pirate Of The Year Award. It’s a quest that takes our heroes from the shores of exotic Blood Island to the foggy streets of Victorian London. Along the way they battle a diabolical queen (Imelda Staunton) and team up with a haplessly smitten young scientist (David Tennant), but never lose sight of what a pirate loves best: adventure!

Actors: Martin Freeman , Lenny Henry , David Tennant , Ashley Jensen , Imelda Staunton , Salma Hayek , Brian Blessed , Jeremy Piven , Brendan Gleeson , Hugh Grant
Directors: Peter Lord
Country: UK
Add a Review

Manohla Dargis
The New York Times

The movie is a curiosity cabinet of visual pleasures but so breezy and lightly funny that you may not realize at first how good it is.

Claudia Puig
USA Today

May be far more ragtag than swashbuckling, but the film is sure-footed, witty and zany fun.

Adam Markovitz
Entertainment Weekly

You can almost smell the brine in the boat helmed by Pirate Captain (Hugh Grant) on his quest to win Pirate of the Year.

Pete Hammond
Boxoffice Magazine

The Pirates! Band of Misfits is one of the funniest animated films in years, or to put it in terms you scallywags can understand: it's a treasure trove of laughs.

Kenneth Turan
Los Angeles Times

A clever piece of business that is a complete pleasure to experience.

Bill Goodykoontz
Arizona Republic

The lunacy begins early in The Pirates! Band of Misfits and never lets up.

David Fear
Time Out New York

No one else has come close to translating England's homegrown blend of deadpan and madcap for a younger audience, much less with such impressive Claymated technique. You couldn't ask for better lesson in "Anglo-Absurdism for Beginners."

Peter Bradshaw
The Guardian

It is effortlessly and unassumingly funny – and terrifically smart.

Olly Richards

Another Aardman triumph. The animation house's most technically ambitious project so far and, if not quite at the genius level of Wallace & Gromit, still a comedy treasure and far too good just for kids.

John DeFore
The Hollywood Reporter

A delightful romp whose varied pleasures should please kids all along the age spectrum.

Leslie Felperin

Although this family-friendly tale of feckless adventurers pursuing a prize is consistently funnier than "Arthur," in language, humor and attitude it's as endearingly British as Yorkshire pudding, soccer hooliganism and wonky teeth.

Ian Buckwalter

Barely a moment goes by without a well-orchestrated joke (or three), and it's paced as briskly as a clipper in front of a stiff tailwind.

Sara Stewart
New York Post

The biggest thrill for this mild-mannered crew isn't plundering or plank-walking, but Ham Night.

Jennie Punter
The Globe and Mail (Toronto)

Designed to please all generations of irreverent humour-lovers, The Pirates! Band of Misfits may not be heart-warming (it is about nasty, scurvy pirates!) but it's breezy rollicking fun.

Amy Biancolli
San Francisco Chronicle

That the film happens to be in 3-D, with digitized settings and backgrounds, doesn't detract from the timeworn charm of watching blob-like characters lurch erratically through harebrained comic pratfalls.

Tom Russo
Boston Globe

The movie could also teach something to the makers of "Pirates of the Caribbean" about delivering a story quirky enough to actually stick with you.

M. E. Russell
Portland Oregonian

It's better at being droll than laugh-out-loud funny.

Michael Phillips
Chicago Tribune

Uneven but rollicking, The Pirates! has a personality to call its own.

Tasha Robinson
The A.V. Club

Pirates! comes with all the usual Aardman strengths intact, particularly the sense that its characters and creators alike are too good-hearted and sweet to nitpick.

Steve Persall
Tampa Bay Times

The movie's memorable moments involve a silently expressive dodo bird and "man-panzee," stealing the show from human caricatures acting silly.

James Berardinelli

Suffused with satire, wit, and the dry, tongue-in-cheek flavor of comedy one rarely finds in American productions, this stop-motion animated excursion pokes fun at pirate conventions while representing icons Queen Victoria and Charles Darwin as a bitch and a twit, respectively.

Michelle Orange

It's all rather casual - not unengaging, exactly, but lacking a narrative energy all its own.

Richard Corliss

A cheerful entertainment, suitable for kids and parents of the brighter stripe. It's just not Nick Park great.

Nick Pinkerton
Village Voice

A script that consistently finds fresh outlets for its running gags makes for a sufficiently rollicking pleasure cruise.

Marjorie Baumgarten
Austin Chronicle

Better use should have been made of the voice talent provided by Jeremy Piven, Salma Hayek, and Lenny Henry than the meager cameos their characters have. But no one here needs to walk the plank.

Jody Mitori
St. Louis Post-Dispatch

The movie is missing the zippy chases and lovable characters of Aardman studio's previous films ("Arthur Christmas," "Chicken Run").

Michael O'Sullivan
Washington Post

Like many Aardman films, The Pirates! is awash with silliness. There are far more fleeting visual jokes than one can possibly digest in a single viewing. It makes for an experience that, while geared toward younger, more fidgety audiences, has enough humor to keep Mom and Dad from falling asleep.

Elizabeth Weitzman
New York Daily News

The claymation visuals are charming, and an enthusiastic, if somewhat underused, cast works hard to sell the better jokes (though the funniest gag is a silent monkey butler).

Neil Smith
Total Film

Though we'd love to see how Aardman handle Defoe's followup, An Adventure With Communists, this amiable but overstretched diversion is unlikely to spawn a Caribbean franchise.

Chuck Bowen
Slant Magazine

The film is content as it is to run clever one-liners and 19th-century pop-cultural references into the same comedic whirlpool.

Mike Scott
New Orleans Times-Picayune

What you won't find amid the clashing cutlasses and flashing foils, however, is anything resembling a rapier wit.

Add Soundtrack

1. Rule Britannia ( Writer: Gideon Defoe )

2. Fiesta ( Performer: The Pogues )

3. Swords of a Thousand Men ( Performer: Tenpole Tudor )

4. Train to Skaville ( Performer: The Ethiopians )

5. Sailing Out on the Ocean ( Performer: Haskell Wolfenbarger )

6. London Calling ( Performer: The Clash )

7. Blow the Man Down ( Writer: Gideon Defoe )

8. Also Sprach Zarathustra, Op. 3 ( Writer: Gideon Defoe )

9. The Girl from Ipanema ( Writer: Gideon Defoe )

10. Waiting for The Robert E. Lee ( Writer: Gideon Defoe )

11. I'm Not Crying ( Performer: Flight of the Conchords )

12. Ranking Full Stop ( Performer: The Beat )

13. Morgenblatter, Op. 279 ( Performer: Polish State Philharmonic Orchestra )

14. You Can Get It If You Really Want ( Performer: Desmond Dekker )

15. Alright ( Performer: Supergrass )

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