Peter Lord does it again with his latest full-length clay animation film, The Pirates! Band of Misfits. It provides the same level of laughs as Lord’s previous film such as Flushed Away, Wallace & Gromit collection, and Chicken Run. It nice to see the clay animation still having a presence in film with all the advances in technology today that make films such as Shrek, Tangled, and The Lorax have that glazed computer look.
The film follows a goofy batch of pirates lead by The Pirate Captain (voiced by Hugh Grant) that are viewed as a laughing stock by all of their pirating peers. To prove themselves worthy, they venture out by boarding various vessels with no luck until they come across Charles Darwin’s boat who informs the crew that Pirate Captain’s parrot, Polly, is not a parrot at all but the last surviving Dodo. Darwin and the Pirate crew then travel the London to showcase the rare pet and this is where Darwin’s devilish intentions are revealed. Here is the trailer:
I had a sister that went to college for computer graphic design and one of the classes she had to take was clay animation. Her final product was very brief and primitive by comparison to The Pirates! Band of Misfits. And this was after a whole semester of working on it so I could not even begin to imagine the level of focus and concentration necessary to create this film. The details are incredible! The sets were crafted to perfection and characters’ features were very defined. The scenes were they’re walking along the pier, in the bar, on the boats were so detailed they might have spent days per inch and they looked so authentic. One of the things the film glorified was the Pirate Captain’s beard and they should have! Enough can’t be said about it.
The story was a fun and filled with silly laughs. This is a family movie so the jokes are all very kid friendly but that does not make them any less humorous. The banter between characters and play on words to the awkward situations they would find themselves in were great. It is has a great flow that moves the story along nicely. The voice acting was good, nothing sounded over acted which is good. Interesting fact, the voice actor for one of the characters was changed to an American actor. Not sure why, just was.
Overall, Peter Lord’s The Pirates! Band of Misfits was a fun family adventure animation film. I give it an 8/10. It was a tad too silly at times for my liking.