Reading the Screen: The Pirates! In an Adventure with Scientists
Posted by: David Pitt
In case you haven’t heard, Aardman Animation, those wonderful folks who brought us Wallace and Gromit and Chicken Run, are doing a stop-motion version of Gideon Defoe’s splendidly wacky 2004 comic adventure, The Pirates! In an Adventure with Scientists. The movie is scheduled for release in March, and I think, if you’re a fan of high-seas humor, you’ll want to check it out.
The book is wildly hilarious, a spoof of pirate stories featuring a vain, dumb-as-dirt Pirate Captain — Hugh Grant does the voice in the movie, and that’s perfect casting — and his merry band of goofy shipmates. In this first Pirates! adventure, set in 1837, they hook up with Charles Darwin, who enlists their aid in rescuing his brother, Erasmus, from the clutches of the evil Bishop of Oxford. What follows is a rollicking adventure through the streets of London involving a trip to the zoo, a game or two of miniature golf, some piratical cross-dressing, and some moderately successful derring-do. I’ve read the book, and its sequels, about half a dozen times, and I’ve laughed just as hard every time.
Here’s the movie’s trailer (under itsless-funny international title of The Pirates! Band of Misfits):