Editor's Note: If it's not one thing, it's another. First connectivity and now, for some reason, I can't get the automated posting thing to work. Bear with me if you would. Thanks.
I caught the movie Pirate Radio the other night and if I were a schoolteacher, the film would get a B or a B- from me. For those unfamiliar, there was no radio station in Britain during the late 1960s that broadcasted rock for any length of time. To right this particular wrong (it was the 1960s after all), ships anchored themselves off of the British coast and piped in unlicensed broadcasts to the masses -- not unlike the Voice of America effort.
There's a lot to like in the film. The DJs on the ship are a fun, rowdy lot and even the government bureaucrats trying to end the very popular pirate radio transmissions are fun to watch. We see a minor Coming of Age story, a bit of angst, a DJ pissing contest, and cartoonish government bumbling. While this is all fun, there's a plot point that hinges on a massive piece of BS drama resolved only by suspending your disbelief, attaching it to a hot air balloon, and never seeing it again.
That said, the film's cast is simply amazing. Bill Nighy continues to be one of the most awesome underrated actors of our time. Philip Seymour Hoffman is good but not nearly as much as he was in Capote. Kenneth Branagh gets a chance to do some comedy and the rest of the cast makes a good effort to make this enjoyable.
Pirate Radio is a fun movie, but not the sort of thing you'll want to watch over and over. It's worth a rental.