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Captain Red runs a hardy pirate ship with the able assistance of Frog, a dashing young French sailor. One day Capt. Red is captured and taken aboard a Spanish galleon, but thanks to his inventiveness, he raises the crew to mutiny, takes over the ship, and kidnaps the niece of the governor of Maracaibo. The question is, can he keep this pace up? Written by
When the film was in development in the 1970s, Roman Polanski envisioned Jack Nicholson as Captain Thomas Bartholemew Red, Isabelle Adjani as Maria-Dolores, and himself as Jean-Baptiste/The Frog. However, Nicholson, who had previously worked with Polanski on Chinatown (1974), drove the director crazy with outrageous salary demands. At one point, when Polanski asked him, out of desperation, "What exactly do you want?", Nicholson replied, "I want more!" In the end, Walter Matthau replaced Nicholson when the film was finally made in the 1980's. See more »
Why was I born a Spaniard and not an Aztec? Why, Padre, are there never answers to the questions that truly matter? Why?
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Walter Matthau's Captain Red leaves a lasting impression
Roman Polanski's Pirates, starring Walter Matthau as the avaricious Captain Red, is an absolutely hilarious comedy/adventure. The cast of characters is varied and interesting and the sets appear very authentic. The movie contains excellent dialogue, good swashbuckling choreography and plenty of physical humour which borders on the bawdy at times. The story is simple and dynamic and is completely driven by the characters.
I like this movie for its characters. Each one's desires become the focus of fanatical efforts. Throw in some fascinating (though often exaggerated) character quirks, and the cast makes this movie. The rough, oafish Captain Red desires gold. The handsome, quiet Frog desires Dolores. The stiff, foppish Don Alfonso desires power. In the end, who will get what he desires? Most assuredly not EVERYONE.
I only have ONE favorite movie and this is it. I know it is not for everyone (my wife hates it). However, for Matthau fans, or fans of the historical genre, this movie is a fun night out with plenty of laughs. I recommend it strongly.
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