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The Pirates! Band of Misfits Movie Review

Have you ever seen a movie where the main characters don't even have names? It doesn't happen very often, but somehow the characters find their own ways to be memorable.

 

Remembering the unique bit of each pirate to recall his name is not as easy in a review as it flows on the screen.

We met the pirate with gout, the pirate with a scarf, the strangely curvaceous pirate, the albino pirate and more. Their captain is called "Captain", which is the closest to a name that any of them have. The captain provides his crew with ham dinners on a regular basis.

The captain is only regarded as apt by his crew, though. The other pirates all think that he is ineffective and weak. He is forever attacking ships that are not carrying any treasure, which is really a bummer when you're a pirate. He is always shunned at the awards for Pirate of the Year, and his contenders laugh at him. They include Black Bellamy, Peg Leg Hastings and Cutlass Liz.

The misfit pirates get a bit of good luck when they have a chance to meet Charles Darwin, not yet famous as a scientist, who realizes that Captain's fat parrot isn't a parrot - he is a Dodo bird, and they are believed to be extinct. Darwin wants to show off the Dodo to the Royal Scientific Society for a big prize, and the captain agrees to the plan, since it could be a way for him to win the best pirate award. But Queen Victoria, who hates pirates, is also interested in the Dodo.

Fans of Wallace and Gromit and Chicken Run will recognize the same type of claymation in Pirates - Band of Misfits. Their bug-eyed faces with their Chiclet teeth are even more detailed than the previous Claymation films. The CGI water effects were enjoyed by many.

This movie does a wonderful job in blending silliness and dry wit, and that carries the film. Our pirate friends are silly, but they are still pirates, leading to many amusing moments. When the "Scientist Captain" infiltrates the Royal Society, it proves to be just as entertaining as all of the action-packed scenes.

The cast of The Pirates! Band of Misfits is a stroke of movie-making genius. Hugh Grant will not be easily recognized as the captain, and his advisers do a wonderful job of competing for his attention. The children who see this movie will love the monkey with cue cards, trained by Darwin.

The British actually don't make a lot of animated films, but they make us believe that these clay or pixelated characters are real, and we can feel for them. The film is one that can be enjoyed by many differing age groups, on many different levels. You'll likely have as good a time at this movie as your children will, just not at the same parts. When you sign on for the voyage of The Pirates! Band of Misfits, you'll certainly enjoy the ride.


 
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