Movie Mom

Movie Mom


Happy Talk Like a Pirate Day!

posted by Nell Minow

Arrrrrrrrrrr! Avast me hearties, it be Talk Like a Pirate Day! If you have not read the classic Dave Barry tribute to this most wonderfully silly of holidays, you are in for a treat.Captain Hookjpg
And what better way to celebrate than with some great pirate movies!
1. The Pirates of Penzance The classic Gilbert and Sullivan musical is about an apprentice pirate who cannot leave until his 21st birthday — but was born on Feb 29, so that means he has a long, long time to wait. Completely charming and hilarious with wonderful songs that include “Poor Wandering One” and “A Policeman’s Lot is Not a Happy One.” (All ages)
jack_sparrow.jpg2. Pirates of the Caribbean Johnny Depp and Orlando Bloom broke the curse of the pirate movie with this smash success — improbably based on a theme park ride — that led to two sequels. (10 and up)
3. Shipwrecked Think “Home Alone” with pirates as a couple of kids have to defend an island from pirate leader Gabriel Byrne. (8 and up)
4. Peter Pan Pirate Captain Hook and his faithful sidekick Smee are no match for Peter, Wendy, and the Lost Boys in this Disney classic. (All ages. Note: Some racist and sexist material as typical for its era)
5. Captain Blood No one swashbuckles like Errol Flynn! In one of his most famous roles he plays a wrongfully convicted doctor who escapes and becomes a pirate. (8 and up)



  • jestrfyl

    Argh! Thar be no finer piratical battle that that waged in “Swiss Family Robinson”. Me whiskers is still singed from them bloody coconut grenades!
    And one O the oddest films for swashin’ a buckle is “Swashbuckler”, with that scurvy captain who cheated Jaws, Roert Shaw; a man with the voice of Davy Jones wee lad – James Earl Jones; and Franhkensteen’s own monster his own self, Peter Boyle.
    But for the strangest star by which to lay a course and steer a career, look no further than Cutthroat Island, made and performed by the fine archer and lusty wench (and former president?!) Geena Davis.
    So when is that scalawag and sly seadawg Mel Brooks going to harpoon this fine genre with one O his hearty lampoons? Soon?

  • Nell Minow

    You may be the only person on earth to have a kind word for “Cutthroat Island,” one of the biggest money-losers of all time! But “Swiss Family Robinson” is one of my all-time favorites. I love the animal race just before the pirates arrive. And “Swashbuckler” never got the attention it deserved. Maybe I’ll put it on next year’s TLaPD list!

  • Jill Rasmussen

    I also liked (in my wee youth as a lass) a Disney movie called Black Beard’s Ghost. I used to have a crush on Dean Jones.
    I loved Treasure Island – almost all of the versions except maybe the Muppet version.
    I definately like the Pirates of the Caribbean. Gotta love Johnny and Orlando. They had such a chemistry that made the movie worth watching – over and over and over again.
    There is a spoof – and a rock and roll version of the Pirates of Penzance with Kristy Nichol and Christopher Atkin that was pretty cute and corny.
    I can’t think of any other pirate movie, at least that hasn’t been mentioned.

  • Nell Minow

    A great list, Jill! The Kristy McNichol pirate film was a notorious flop and with “Cutthroat Island” pretty much killed off the genre until Disney’s unexpected smash, thanks to some great action and Johnny and Orlando (not to mention Kiera at age 17 shouting, “You want pain? Try wearing a corset!” Peter Ustinov was a great pirate in “Blackbeard’s Ghost” but for many people the ultimate pirate is Robert Newton, who played Long John Silver in three movies and had the best “Arrrrr” in the business.

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