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The Pirates of Somalia (2017)

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In 2008, rookie journalist Jay Bahadur forms a half-baked plan to embed himself among the pirates of Somalia. He ultimately succeeds in providing the first close-up look into who these men ... See full summary »


Bryan Buckley


Bryan Buckley, Jay Bahadur (based on the book "The Pirates of Somalia: Inside Their Hidden World" by)
4,587 ( 276)





Credited cast:
Evan Peters ... Jay Bahadur
Al Pacino ... Seymour Tolbin
Melanie Griffith ... Maria Bahadur
Barkhad Abdi ... Abdi
Coral Peña ... Katlyn
Philip Ettinger ... Alex
Russell Posner ... Jared Bahadur
Aidan Whytock ... Agent Brice
Kiana Madani ... Tracy Ziconni
Jojo Gonzalez ... Jojo
Darron Meyer ... Mitch Kelp
Mohamed Hakeemshady ... Ancient Warrior (voice) (as Hakeemshady Mohamed)
Sabrina Hassan Sabrina Hassan ... Maryan
Maria Vos ... Avril Benoît
Edward Gelbinovich


In 2008, rookie journalist Jay Bahadur forms a half-baked plan to embed himself among the pirates of Somalia. He ultimately succeeds in providing the first close-up look into who these men are, how they live, and the forces that drive them.

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Plot Keywords:

canada | writer | drugs | gun | See All (4) »


Biography | Drama

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated R for language throughout, drug content, and brief strong violence. | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »



Somalia | Kenya | Sudan | South Africa | USA


English | Somali

Release Date:

8 December 2017 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Dabka See more »

Filming Locations:

New York, USA See more »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs


Sound Mix:

Dolby Digital



Aspect Ratio:

2.35 : 1
See full technical specs »

Did You Know?


Jay Bahadur is saying he always considered himself more of a Bernstein, than a Woodward, as Bernstein was ugly as hell and never went through college, and overcame his shortcomings. Bob Woodward went to Harvard Law School, and Carl Bernstein dropped out of university. Carl Bernstein was played by Dustin Hoffman in All the Presidents Men, a movie, of which Jay Bahadur has a poster of, hanging in his room. See more »


Maryan: This card bears my name. What does it say?
Jay Bahadur: You don't read English?
Maryan: Not so well.
Jay Bahadur: That card says that, um, you're the hottest drug dealer in the world.
Maryan: Is that what it says?
Jay Bahadur: Yes.
Maryan: I like that.
See more »

Crazy Credits

The closing credits identify the many Somali refugees in the cast and crew with the year they became a refugee. See more »


References G.I. Jane (1997) See more »


In Love With You
Written by Ed Hartman
Performed by Ed Hartman
Courtesy of Crucial Music
See more »

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User Reviews

...if you go in, have patience.
18 January 2018 | by steveo122See all my reviews

The title "The Pirates of Somalia" + 'too old for action' Pacino set up in my mind a film completely different from what transpired. And so did the 'tone' of the first 20 or 30 minutes. The unprepossessing lead actor and the 'near-goofy bro' tone almost had me leave early but, if you go in, have patience. This well made true life tale of an idealist who takes a way-over-his-head risky chance in the hope of establishing himself as a journalist keeps adding weight as goes. The director mixes in a little magical-realism while presenting background to the Somali situation that I had never heard or read of before. Plus, it happens to be funny quite often. Enough license taken to make it a tense grand adventure. Our favorite Somali actor, Barkhad Abdi, once again, does a great job.

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