Pirate RadioDirector: Richard Curtis
In mid- to late-'60s Britain, an unusual yet colorful subculture sprang up and thrived as a product of the upswing in British pop music, only to meet its doom within a few short years. Though the BBC functioned as the country's main source of news and music, its programmers offered very little airtime to rock & roll -- which left an overwhelming need unfulfilled. In response, small bands of "pirate" radio enthusiasts set up broadcasting towers on boats just outside of English boundary waters, and transmitted signals to an estimated 25 million listeners, 24 hours a day and seven days per week. Unsurprisingly, the DJs who took charge of these broadcasts could rival just about anyone in terms of flamboyance and outsized personalities. With Pirate Radio (released as The Boat That Rocked in the U.K.), writer-director Richard Curtis (Love Actually) travels back to the Swinging Sixties and takes a headfirst plunge into this colorful realm. The story opens in 1966, aboard a rusty fishing trawler christened Radio Rock and equipped with pirate broadcasting equipment. Here, the slightly daft elitist Quentin (Bill Nighy) presides over a motley crew of joint-toking, sex-hungry disc jockeys including Dave (Nick Frost), a heavyset boob who nevertheless considers himself a hot property with women and loves to chase skirts; "The Count" (Philip Seymour Hoffman), an American DJ who aspires to be the first person to drop an F-bomb over the British airwaves; the gloom-laden Irishman Simon (Chris O'Dowd); bonked-out hipster Thick Kevin (Tom Brooke); womanizer Mark (Tom Wisdom); Angus (Rhys Darby), a New Zealander whom nobody likes; and the only female member of the group, lesbian cook Felicity (Katherine Parkinson). These misfits pull off quite a show -- enough of one that they attain the status of national idols for the youth culture -- but the super-conservative government minister Dormandy (Kenneth Branagh) detests the whole business and will do almost anything in his power to shut them down.
- Release Date:
- Original Release:
- Focus Features
- [Wide Screen]
- [DTS 5.1-Channel Surround Sound, Dolby AC-3 Surround Sound]
Cast & Crew
|Richard Curtis||Director,Executive Producer,Screenwriter|
|Nick Angel||Musical Direction/Supervision|
|Thomas Brown||Art Director|
|Liza Chasin||Executive Producer|
|Emma Freud||Associate Producer|
|Debra Hayward||Executive Producer|
|Emma E. Hickox||Editor|
|Ben Howarth||Asst. Director|
|Joanna Johnston||Costumes/Costume Designer|
|Hilary Bevan Jones||Producer|
|Mark Tildesley||Production Designer|
|Ian Voigt||Sound Mixer|
|Hans Zimmer||Score Composer|
Most Helpful Customer Reviews
See all customer reviews
The soundtrack is fantastic. I bought it on ITunes right after I saw the movie. The performances are wonderful...Philip Seymore Hoffman and the rest of the cast don't disappoint. The movie storyline is based on fact. Apparently, rock and roll was banned by British radio in the 60's. So a ship parked itself right outside British waters and broadcast rock and roll 24 hours a day as an "underground" radio station. The script is offbeat and hysterically funny. I loved the movie so much that I bought it for a friend and she loved it just as much as I did. This movie is a MUST SEE!!
I saw this in the theater and could not wait to get in on blue ray dvd. This movie is just so much fun to watch. It has a great sound track, the music is really awesome. You want to just get up and dance - at least at home you can do that. It's also hysterical! I love Phillip Seymore Hoffmam, Bill Nighy and Rhys Ifans. They all do a terrific job in this movie. This movie was made by the same people who made Love Actually, another favorite of mine. The British make some of the best comedies. This may not win any awards, but if you want to listen to some good music and enjoy yourself for 2 hours, this is the right movie for you.
This movie relates a little known time in British history. I think the notion that the government might try to control the type of music to which people have access is one that most U.S. audiences will find strange. There certainly were "culture wars" over rock and roll music in the U.S. in the 1950's and 1960's, but the radio stations that played rock were not often censored by the government. Thus, the basic "conflict" in the story is difficult for U.S. audiences to relate to. Nevertheless, the soundtrack is amazing and the performances (especially Phillip Seymour Hoffmans's) are first rate.