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The Boat That Rocked
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Reviews & Ratings for
Pirate Radio More at IMDbPro »The Boat That Rocked (original title)

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Index 197 reviews in total 

148 out of 201 people found the following review useful:

the film that rocked

9/10
Author: big_bea from Munich, Germany
16 April 2009

I have been wanting to see this movie since I saw the trailer for the very first time. Today I finally got the opportunity. The plot sounded interesting and I was hoping to see a comedy that wasn't as predictable and forced romantic as a lot of comedies are. I wasn't disappointed. Sure, this isn't the most profound story ever told, but I wanted to have fun, and this movie definitely gave it to me. Another bonus is the great soundtrack, which carries the whole movie. After leaving the cinema you will want to listen to the songs featured in this film, just so you can enjoy the feeling of it a little longer. This film is funny from the beginning to the end, and there were moments when I couldn't stop laughing. If you want to see a feel-good movie with a plot that was, at least as far as I know, not used before, than this is the right film for you.

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116 out of 148 people found the following review useful:

In a 60s party mood - no more.. but no less, either

8/10
Author: steinerelt from Zlin, Czech Republic
8 August 2009

Although the film received its fair share of criticism for its historical inaccuracies and feeble plot, in my view, the film does exactly what its authors set out to achieve and - not only in terms of the soundtrack - rock it really does.

If you're looking for an evening of pure escapist fun, feeling generally nostalgic and cool about the legacy of the 60s fashion and music, and would like to forget history for a while and go with the party mood, go see this film - you won't be let down and you'll get what you're looking for: an amazing soundtrack (although, as many didn't hesitate to point out, not entirely historically accurate), with the likes of The Rolling Stones, The Kinks, Dusty Springfield, The Hollies, Jimmy Hendrix, Buddy Holly, and many many more, with the charismatic Bill Nighy and a bunch of other not-quite-so-ordinary eccentric characters, more or less familiar to you, depending on how you enjoy British (and American) comedy (e.g. IT Crowd). Even if you don't know the actors, even if you're not into the music of the 60s, you've got pure feel-good fun thrown in to top it off for a great evening of the 60s Rock'n'Roll partying. And it's partying in the true 60s sense of the word.

On the other hand, if you're looking for profound plot development, historical accuracy and consistency, or a true story of a real pirate radio station Caroline that inspired the story, or, in fact, would like to see a true depiction of the life in the UK in 1966, do NOT go see this film, because you might leave disappointed.

It's as simple as that.

So, a definite recommendation for cinema viewing because of the necessary volume that the speakers allow you there to enjoy the music to the fullest (and, let me say one more time what music it is!), but stay out if you're not in a party mood.

I give it 8/10 for the feel-good, cool entertainment it brings and.... well, for the Rock'n'Roll.

Have fun!

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69 out of 89 people found the following review useful:

Right Fun Time

8/10
Author: mzmorpheus09 from United States
24 August 2009

What a cute flick! As a (former) film reviewer I have absolutely no desire to dissect or critique this movie. I'm just taking it at face value. It's fun, uplifting and witty. It's obvious the cast had a hell of a good time making it (even the 'bad' guys). Hoffman and Nighey are in top form. The gags are good, even when they tank. And the ending gave a surprising increase in the tension/suspense.

Really can't find anything terribly wrong with this aside from the mild sexism but it's so subtle, I hardly noticed.

I've been going through a really rough time personally and watching this cheered me. What more could you hope for?

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63 out of 97 people found the following review useful:

Delightful

10/10
Author: mamamimi from United States
12 August 2009

I saw it twice on my overseas trip to Egypt and twice on my way back and loved every minute of it. I mimed the songs (passengers on the plane would not have appreciated me belting out Rolling Stones and Donovan:)) and danced on my seat all the way. Philip Seymor Hoffman was a delight and quite a fantastic actor and he really had tough competition since the whole cast was exceptional. Rhys Ifans is a far cry from the skinny weirdo on Notting Hill. Bill Nighy was a bit similar to his Love Actually role, still a favorite of mine. Emma Thompson was on for a few minutes, but you cannot imagine anyone else in that role. And, you can hardly recognize Kenneth Branagh! A must see movie for young and old, especially old because it will make them feel young again. I am 57 today!!

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55 out of 82 people found the following review useful:

A good-humoured and moving British comedy as a tribute to pop-rock

7/10
Author: simona gianotti from Italy
18 June 2009

If you think of "Four weddings and a Funeral" or "Notting Hill", you will be a little disappointed, being here the overall tone not so brilliant, dialogues not so sparkling, however, the both humorous and moving atmosphere of Richard Curtis's comedies is still recognizable.

I think the real protagonist in "The boat that rocked" is music, that sound pop-rock that in the 60's began to move the world, and to be opposed by the establishment as a dangerous weapon in the hands of the multitudes, as a threat to a well consolidated but no longer valid system. Among unreal situations, a totally-lacking plot, among odd and eccentric characters, what only matters is that power of music to revive one's spirits, to give voice to the most uncontrolled, animal, ancestral instincts of man. And thus becomes, in my opinion, the most vivid scene that of those hundreds of records floating on the water, the symbol of a generation, of an era that was then ready to explode, and that no strict establishment could have wiped away, even once illegal radio stations were shut down.

No revolutionary message is conveyed: it's a good-humoured and at intervals melancholic tribute to a generation who, maybe ingenuously, but deeply, and truly believed in out of time-values, friendship, respect, love, and believed that music was a strong, and powerfully effective means to convey them. Even if you don't belong to that generation, each of us has experienced, one or more times in one's life, the communion of a piece of music with the most sensitive chords of our soul: it's about something emotional, but also physical and that's what the director just wants to celebrate.

If you are fond of music, or simply you have once in your life been moved by a song, you will like this movie, or at least enjoy it for what it is, without the necessity of too much criticism.

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53 out of 84 people found the following review useful:

Good, honest fun.

8/10
Author: Baldrick44 from Brisbane, Australia
14 April 2009

Richard Curtis' first 'non romantic comedy film' is really another romantic comedy film- it's just that the romantic bit gets swamped within 20 other sub-plots so you try and not notice.

The Boat That Rocked sees Carl ( Tom Surridge ) go aboard Radio Rock- a pirate radio station owned by Quentin ( Bill Nighy ) whose DJ's (Phillip Semour Hoffman, Rhys Ifans, Nick Frost, Chris O' Dowd, Rhys Darby, etc. ) broadcast 24-hour rock and roll music to the UK. They are adored by the populace but hated by the government, including the Minister of Communications ( Kenneth Branagh ) and his chief subordinate ( Jack Davenport ) who aim to shut them down.

If that was the extent of the plot then it would probably be a 100 mins film. However the Boat That Rocked has so many little sub-plots- many seeming like excuses to put in another montage or cameo cast appearance that the time has ballooned out to 154mins and it does tell at times. Furthermore, while Richard Curtis is entitled to look back on these days with an air of nostalgia, he sometimes seems to get a little too weepy eyed with the story.

But these faults are more than made up for in the performances; all of which are good- and some are outstanding. Phillip Seymour Hoffman's Count is a lovable character who approaches everything with great gusto, while Chris O' Dowd's Simple Simon has a wonderful part in the middle section of the movie which brings a little bit of emotion to what is a pretty emotionally vacant movie. Nick Frost is cheeky as Dr Dave and finally Rhys Darby- fresh from Flight of the Conchords- simply shines in his role as the unpopular and daggy Angus who nonetheless gets arguably the best line in the whole movie.

Overall the Boat That Rocked is silly and entertaining fun. It does get overweight by a looong script, but the soundtrack and the cast are good enough to carry it through.

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53 out of 91 people found the following review useful:

A smart and witty story about love and friendship ON A BOAT!

10/10
Author: cypheristikal from Taiwan
14 August 2009

Dude, I went into this only caring that it was starring Philip Seymour (?) Hoffman, and pretty much had little expectations as long as the movie was entertaining- well it was. The very well-scripted (all-star casted) characters created as organic a cast performance as I can remember seeing since Milk. The story of pirate radio leaves its foamtrail through the leaders of p2p filesharing and their unwavering declaration that art should be enjoyed by all, not only the few who are able to pay more than a meal's worth to be able to purchase a copy of the product, pre-packaged by an Industry that is certainly not furthering music as an artform. Getting back to the movie. This roll of film has put it together in a way that's only really reserved for (good) Academy Award winning pictures, but it doesn't get all Curious Case of Benjamin Button on you. The superb cast of actors all deliver quite genuine performances, even though it takes some growing into (like the movie) but there's enough sarcastic profanity that doesn't push it over the comfort zone. The tale of Radio Rock and its crew is one that transcends personality and nationality. Lots of sex and friendship and love, this movie is the antithesis of the consumeristic slavery of our civilization and is a (loose) guide to what we should all strive for in life. The Hitler-like English committeeman in charge with taking care of the Radio Pirates is an unabashedly serious caricature of government-led regulators holding the link between revenue generating industries and the voices of progress, each always trying to tip the balance in their favor. The plot gracefully glides into its climax and with no extended cuddling it exits leaving us a nice retrospective of the experience. For the patient and passionate viewer, this film is highly recommended.

-cypheristikal

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75 out of 136 people found the following review useful:

The Rocking Of Opportunism

2/10
Author: Jane Mullins (janemullinsuk@yahoo.co.uk) from United Kingdom
13 April 2009

*** This review may contain spoilers ***

Trying to satisfy the most ends up, as is usually the case, not satisfying anyone. The blatant attempt to be cute turns out out to be rather nauseating. Not a single moment of truth, not a single moment of beauty. It is quite simply atrocious. It also felt endless and I'm not giving it a 1 because there are some spot on musical moments within the otherwise opportunistic score. I like(d) Richard Curtis but he is taking his formula of odd ball characters to a place where no human being (the thinking kind) ever ventures. A French farce with typically scatological British touches. And Philip Seymour Hoffman? What's with this guy? Very good actor but his dishevelment is starting to get on my nerves. Even as Truman Capote I felt he needed a shower. Emma Thompson has a grand cameo but, quite frankly, it belonged to a completely different film. None of it ringed true and if I sound angry it may be because I am. I left my house, I drove under the rain, had to park, paid outrageous fees for parking, tickets, a drink and then I had to sit through this mess of a thing. There is a moment on the last third when the characters, hit by a Titanic style emergency, have to transmit their boat's location and you wait with unbearable impatience for the inevitable crowd of boats coming to their rescue. Oh dear, Oh dear. Kenneth Brannagh comes to elevate, slightly, the boring proceedings with a fine tuned cartoonish villain. Lost at sea, that's how I felt and as you may very well imagine, I didn't like it one bit.

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13 out of 18 people found the following review useful:

Great Movie! One of the best in years

10/10
Author: zenrunar from United States
19 August 2009

This is the Film of the year! No specials effects and CG and just a nice vibe to it. I found this film to be profoundly good. MUCH, MUCH better than I ever expected. Hoffman always delivers and with great UK talent. I was truly dumbfounded. Writing is good, plot is solid, Acting is fantastic, story line is great and the best movie score/soundtrack I have heard in recent history. It is fairly long but goes well with a cold one on a weekend. I hope it gets huge distribution in the US! It's a fun,uplifting, feel-good, strange and yet inspiring film. To be based on a true story and deliver this is impressive. I will tell everybody about this one. Watch it.

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38 out of 68 people found the following review useful:

A film that rocks

Author: Gordon-11 from Earth
7 August 2009

This film is about a pirate rock radio station in British North Sea in the 1960's.

I have watched several movies about British music history, and I have enjoyed none of them. So it was a pleasant surprise when I watched "The Boat That Rocked", as I find it very enjoyable.

The plot emphasises on the the character's interpersonal dynamics, their passion for music and their strive to rebel. It is a well written and well told story. Character development is excellent, each of them have different charisma and charm. They engage me throughout to the point that I feel what the characters feel. The film is very good, you have to see it to believe it.

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