The Pirates! An Adventure With Scientists
Finally - a good movie with the word Pirates in the title - Stefano Brucone
Having two excitable young nephews to contend with, I wasn't quite sure if the relatively traditional approach to film making that is stop motion would be enough to keep them distracted for 90 minutes. These are kids who, from birth, have had the geniuses at Pixar slaving to entertain them. As much as I have enjoyed Wallace and Gromit in the past, I have always had a suspicion that they are the cinematic equivalent of wooden toys. Adored by adults, disdained by kids. Even the title, with its sneaky reference to scientists brought up the dreadful spectre of educational fun.
I may have to rethink the merits of wooden toys. This is a wonderfully inventive film with absolutely no pretensions about trying to impress the viewer with historical accuracy. Charles Darwin is a conniving loser and Queen Victoria is a sword wielding misanthrope. The plot, as in most good children's films, is straightforward and allows scope for a moral. Hugh Grant is the Pirate Captain, an underachieving villain who dreams of becoming Pirate of the Year. In his attempt to fulfil his dream, he learns the value of friendship and loyalty, all wonderful things for young children to be exposed to.
Of course, the test of such films is not what adults think of them but how children respond. My nephews were enthralled. The film is full of the kinds of chases, silliness and eye catching imagery that children love whilst also throwing in some sly little references to keep the adults happy (although there are one or two adult themed jokes that could be seen as inappropriate if they weren't fired well above the heads of most children under the age of twelve).
All in all, a thoroughly entertaining movie for both adult and child, patronising neither.
Review published on the 22 April 2012 15:17
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