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Pirate Radio (2009)

The Boat That Rocked (original title)
Trailer
2:20 | Trailer
A band of rogue DJs that captivated Britain, playing the music that defined a generation and standing up to a government that wanted classical music, and nothing else, on the airwaves.

Director:

Richard Curtis

Writer:

Richard Curtis
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Popularity
3,879 ( 327)
2 wins & 9 nominations. See more awards »
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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Michael Hadley Michael Hadley ... Mr. Roberts
Charlie Rowe ... James
Lucy Fleming ... Mrs. Roberts
Philip Seymour Hoffman ... The Count
Tom Sturridge ... Carl
Ian Mercer ... Transfer Boatman
Bill Nighy ... Quentin
Will Adamsdale ... News John
Tom Brooke ... Thick Kevin
Rhys Darby ... Angus Nutsford
Nick Frost ... Dave
Katherine Parkinson ... Felicity
Chris O'Dowd ... Simon
Ike Hamilton ... Harold
Stephen Moore ... Prime Minister
Learn more

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Storyline

This movie is an ensemble comedy in which the romance takes place between the young people of the 1960s and pop music. It's about a band of rogue DJs that captivated Britain, playing the music that defined a generation and standing up to a government that wanted classical music, and nothing else, on the airwaves. The Count (Philip Seymour Hoffman), a big, brash, American god of the airwaves; Quentin (Bill Nighy), the boss of Radio Rock - a pirate radio station in the middle of the North Sea that's populated by an eclectic crew of rock and roll DJs; Gavin (Rhys Ifans), the greatest DJ in Britain who has just returned from his drug tour of America to reclaim his rightful position; Dave (Nick Frost), an ironic, intelligent, and cruelly funny co-broadcaster; and a fearsome British government official out for blood against the drug takers and lawbreakers of a once-great nation. Written by Production office

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

On air. Off shore. Out of control. See more »

Genres:

Comedy | Drama | Music

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated R for language, and some sexual content including brief nudity | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Although purely fictional, this movie referenced many of the actual events surrounding pirate radio. Namely, like the pirate radio ship, the "Ross Revenge", the movie's ship is red with the station's name in white paint on the deck. Radio Caroline's ship, the Mi Amigo sank, complete with fleeing DJs unable to save the ship's vast record collection, and as in this movie's finale, its extremely high mast rose out of the sea where it stayed for many months. Also, a DJ married on a pirate radio ship as Simon does in this movie. Additionally, the DJs are seemingly composites of popular radio personalities of the time, such as Tony Blackburn (also unlucky in love in his early days à la Simon Swafford, when his rocky marriage become apparent in his radio show) and the wacky Kenny Everett has traits similar to Angus Nutsford. Dave Lee Travis, Whispering Bob Harris, American DJ Emperor Rosko, and Johnnie Walker are also seemingly portrayed in this movie. See more »

Goofs

When young Karl goes to the broadcast studio to ask Bob about being his Dad, the clock on the wall reads 3:20 (AM) when he arrives. A conversation ensues during which Bob finishes one song, then introduces and starts another as he talks with Karl. But when the scene ends after several minutes, the clock still reads 3:20. See more »

Quotes

Minister Dormandy: No one likes it, apart from blind people, and I'm sure even they can sense it profound ugliness as it passes by.
See more »

Crazy Credits

There is an additional scene after the credits have ended. See more »

Alternate Versions

US distributor, Universal have chosen to re-title the film as "Pirate Radio" and release it under Focus Features in US territories. This new version will be edited for length by director Richard Curtis after some European reviewers cited its 135 minute running time as a factor in its diminished success. See more »

Connections

Featured in WatchMojo: Top 10 Movie Hipsters (2015) See more »

Soundtracks

Vizio di Uccidere
(1965)
From Per qualche dollaro in più (1965) - For a Few Dollars More
Written by Ennio Morricone
Performed by Ennio Morricone
Courtesy of EMI Music Publishing Italia Srl
See more »

User Reviews

 
Right Fun Time
24 August 2009 | by mzmorpheus09See all my reviews

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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Frequently Asked Questions

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Details

Country:

UK | France | Germany

Language:

English

Release Date:

13 November 2009 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Pirate Radio See more »

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Box Office

Budget:

$50,000,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend USA:

$2,904,380, 15 November 2009

Gross USA:

$8,017,917

Cumulative Worldwide Gross:

$36,348,784
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Dolby Digital | SDDS | DTS (as dts)

Color:

Color

Aspect Ratio:

2.35 : 1
See full technical specs »

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