DVD Review: The Pirates! Band of Misfits (2012)

Directed by: Peter Lord, Jeff Newitt
Writer: Gideon Defoe
Rated: PG
Running Time: 98 min

Hugh Grant as The Pirate Captain
Martin Freeman as The Pirate with a Scarf
Imelda Staunton as Queen Victoria
David Tennant as Charles Darwin
Jeremy Piven as Black Bellamy
Salma Hayek as Cutlass Liz
Every Friday, my family has "family movie night". My 6 year old looks forward to it all week and this past week, we rented the animated feature The Pirates! Band of Misfits. The main character is The Pirate Captain, a bumbling captain who's not too bright. He is surrounded by a faithful crew, and his second-hand man is The Pirate with a Scarf (the brains in the organization). This band of misfits get into all of the usual pirate mayhem with hilarious results. The captain even has the stereotypical parrot, Polly.

Each year, all of the pirate captains meet on an island and enter the Pirate of the Year contest. The other contestants include Black Bellamy and Cutlass Liz. Needless to say, they are much more successful at pirating than our Captain and he never wins. Becoming determined not to lose again, The Pirate Captain sets sail in search of a prize-winning booty. After a few unsuccessful raids, the band of misfits finds themselves on the ship of Charles Darwin (yes, that Charles Darwin). Darwin recognizes that Polly isn't really a parrot but the last remaining Dodo. He convinces The Captain that they should sail to England to enter The Royal Society Science Contest.

To add to the Captain's troubles, the reigning Queen of England, Victoria, despises pirates. She is committed to making sure that no pirates are allowed in  England. When that band arrives, they disguise themselves as girl scouts to elude the authorities. When the queen becomes infatuated with The Captain, he eschews his mates and his bird for fame and fortune. Will he find his way back to them before it's too late? You'll have to watch and see.

The Pirates! is a fun romp, with subtle jokes and modern music from the likes of The Clash and Flight of the Conchords. I can usually judge a kid's movie by whether or not it holds my son's attention, and this one was a winner. I think it would be suitable for kids of all ages.

You can rent it now from Redbox. Thanks for stopping by and getting buzzed!