East Fresia 1401: the era of the feared sea pirates Klaus Störtebeker and Gödeke Michels is coming to an end. After a long period with no booty at last a bulging ship appears on the horizon... See full summary »
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Not ''historically accurate'', but by god is it enjoyable.
Many who knows a thing or two about the great pirate era will know doubt get annoyed of this television movie on how it isn't historically accurate according to the legend of Blackbeard. To Them I have two things to say:
1: Remember that history is always written by the winners. The Brits for one do not like the rest of the world to know the origin of the privateers and how they became the first pirates in America. All records of that time was written to make them seem as villainous as possible (which many of them were) and make the empire seem as noble in opposite. I'm not defending the action of most pirates of that era, I'm just saying it is impossible to know the true and full story.
2: So what? This wasn't a true documentary in the stile that it was suppose to inform us, but it is meant to intrigue us and make people interested about the era and this fascinated man. It is much in the same genre of some other BBC production that was made at the same time, like ''Hannibal'' and ''Genghis Khan'', which I also highly recommend. It is meant to be a movie with a documentary style narrative, with good actors and some excellent cinematography. And sense why can't know the true history behind Blackbeard, I can't see how ''lost facts'' should stop you from enjoying this piece.
Now, why do I like this movie so much? Well, just like vikings so have pirates always fascinated me. And Blackbeard is the most fascinating pirate of all time (but not the most successful... that honor goes to Bartholomew Roberts). I saw this movie for the first time about 8 years ago, and it's one of those movies I can go back to over and over again.
There aren't much in terms of characters in this movie. The the actors playing the crew are not bad by any means, but they are really just there to help portray the man of the title. But that is not really needed, because James Purefoy as Blackbeard could hold up a movie by himself ten times over. Be (sadly) put Ian McShane on his place, perhaps being the best portray of the character since Robert Newton. That he didn't get to play the character in the cinema is a really big lost for us all.
The scenery and costumes are also great, and the ships looks amazing. And despite the historical ''missteps'', the movie also makes a great work to learn us some other trivial from the era, like how big the ships really were, instead of the monsters from the PoC- movies.
Is it a great movie?... not really, BUT is it a enjoyable one? If you like me love pirates, then HELL YEAH!
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