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Rock and roll will live forever – but can it float?

Pirate Radio is the newest ensemble comedy from filmmaker Richard Curtis (screenwriter of Four Weddings and a Funeral and Notting Hill, and writer/director of Love Actually), spinning the irreverent yet fact-based tale of a seafaring band of rogue rock and roll deejays whose “pirate radio” captivated and inspired 1960s Britain. Playing the music that rocked a nation and a decade, the group boldly and hilariously defies the government that tries to shut them down.

Broadcasting live 24/7 from an old tanker anchored in the middle of the North Sea (just beyond British jurisdiction), Radio Rock sends out a vibrant and unifying signal to millions across the nation, ranging in age from wide-eyed pre-teens secretly tuning in long past their bedtimes to everyday people in need of a musical pick-me-up. The Radio Rock roster, overseen by unflappable station owner (and ship’s captain) Quentin (Bill Nighy), includes a risk-prone American known only as The Count (Philip Seymour Hoffman); mystic deejay royalty Gavin (Rhys Ifans); slyly amorous Dave (Nick Frost); idiosyncratic New Zealander Angus (Rhys Darby); the rarely seen Bob (Ralph Brown); the aptly named Thick Kevin (Tom Brooke); lovelorn Simon (Chris O’Dowd); ladies’ magnet Mark (Tom Wisdom); shy Harold (Ike Hamilton); reporter News John (Will Adamsdale); and lesbian ship’s cook Felicity (Katherine Parkinson). One night in 1966, Quentin’s teenaged godson Carl (Tom Sturridge) comes aboard. While Carl harbors romantic aspirations that he hopes will be fulfilled during one of the biweekly visits by Radio Rock’s prettiest fans, he also hopes to find out more about his long-absent father…

As the ship sails on and rocks out, what Carl and the freewheeling, free-loving Radio Rock gang don’t know is that back in London, landlocked government minister Dormandy (Kenneth Branagh) has embarked on a vehement crusade to silence their signal – permanently. To stay afloat and keep their devoted audience plugged in, the crew will have to band together and trust in the power of music like never before.

A Focus Features presentation in association with StudioCanal of a Working Title production. Philip Seymour Hoffman, Bill Nighy, Rhys Ifans, Nick Frost, and Kenneth Branagh. Pirate Radio. Music Supervisor, Nick Angel. Chief Make-up and Hair Designer, Christine Blundell. Casting by Fiona Weir. Costume Designer, Joanna Johnston. Editor, Emma E. Hickox, A.C.E. Production Designer, Mark Tildesley. Director of Photography, Danny Cohen, BSC. Associate Producer, Emma Freud. Co-Producer, Ronaldo Vasoncellos. Executive Producers, Richard Curtis, Debra Hayward, Liza Chasin. Produced by Tim Bevan, Eric Fellner, Hilary Bevan Jones. Written and Directed by Richard Curtis. A Focus Features Release.

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Tags

Movies, Comedy Movies, Directors, 1960s, Comedy, Screenwriters, Richard Curtis, Universal Pictures, Focus Features

Details

CastKenneth Branagh, Philip Seymour Hoffman, Rhys Ifans, Bill Nighy, Nick Frost
DirectorRichard Curtis
Genre:  Comedy
Release Date:  November 13, 2009
MPAA Rating:  R
Screen WriterRichard Curtis
Runtime:  116 minutes
Studio:  Universal Pictures, Focus Features
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More Pirate Radio (2009 movie) reviews
review by . May 31, 2011
posted in Movie Hype
*** out of ****     "Pirate Radio", also known as "The Boat that Rocked", is pure fun. And it takes a lot of craft to create what I'd call "fun". A film that probably should have been mediocre and unfunny is turned pretty solid, and indeed funny, through a typically British sense of humor, a rocking-awesome soundtrack, and a big cast with a big heart. I won't call it great cinema, but I admire "Pirate Radio" for the good things about it, rather than scoff at it for its flaws. …
review by . November 13, 2009
posted in Music Matters
Pirate Radio 2
The year was 1966.  Although the sounds of rock & roll, R&B , folk and soul were exploding all over the countryside the staid BBC continued to program only the news, interview programs and the same old dreary music.  The writer/director of "Pirate Radio" Richard Curtis recalled in a recent interview with Rob Lowman of the Los Angeles Daily News that "In my dad's generation they literally had eight records.  They …
review by . February 17, 2011
posted in Movie Hype
My mom bugged me about going to see Pirate Radio (original title: The Boat that Rocked) when it hit the theaters in 2009. I didn’t want to make the effort, blah blah busy life blah so she went and saw it herself like a boss. I only do that for movies like The Dark Knight, which nobody wanted to accompany with me after my fifth viewing. So, my mom came home raving about this film, how funny it was, how clever, how much she wants to make Bill Nighy my step-daddy (just kidding.) etc. etc. so …
review by . March 25, 2011
Over the last few years Hollywood has produced a number of films that I like to call "soundtracks to life". The teen generation recently had Nick and Nora's Infinite Playlist. Some people may not agree with me on this, but I feel that Adventureland was homage to classics of the 70s, and this weekend we get the wild adveture that Pirate Radio takes the audience on. It's a picture that brings laughs from start to finish.      Pirate Radio tells the story of a …
Quick Tip by . September 26, 2010
Great ensemble piece! This mosaic of great acting and interesting personalities kept me glued and wanting more. Bill Nighy and Nick Frost as well as Rhys Ifans stood out in this outstanding cast. Kevin Branagh was so immersed in his character that he was unrecognizable as the posh, yet devious villain.
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