Critics Consensus

Critics Consensus: The Pirates! Band of Misfits Is Certified Fresh

Plus, The Five-Year Engagement is overlong but sweet, Safe is predictable but exciting, and The Raven is spooky but dull.

by | April 27, 2012 | Comments

 

This week at the movies, we’ve got silly seafarers (The Pirates! Band of Misfits, with voice work from Hugh Grant and Brendan Gleeson); longtime companions (The Five-Year Engagement, starring Jason Segel and Emily Blunt); mafia targets (Safe, starring Jason Statham and Catherine Chan); and a literary gumshoe (The Raven, starring John Cusack and Alice Eve). What do the critics have to say?

The Pirates! Band of Misfits

86%

Aardman Animations, the folks behind Chicken Run and Wallace & Gromit films, make animated features the old-fashioned way: using stop-motion claymation. And critics say they’ve got another winner with The Pirates! Band of Misfits, a bright, breezy, gleefully eccentric nautical adventure/comedy. A pirate captain named Pirate Captain (Hugh Grant) is on a quest to win the prestigious Pirate of the Year Award; along the way, buckles are swashed, planks are walked, and ships are plundered (ineffectively, but still). The pundits say the Certified Fresh Pirates! Band of Misfits stands as another triumph for Aardman — it’s filled with witty sight gags and inventive visual touches, and it’s likely to amuse both children and their parents.

The Five-Year Engagement

64%

With their patented mix of heart and raunch, Judd Apatow‘s productions — including, but not limited to, Superbad and Bridesmaids — have scored big with audiences and reviewers. Critics say The Five-Year Engagement doesn’t quite measure up to those standards, but despite some slack pacing, it’s still a pretty warm and honest look at modern love. Jason Segel and Emily Blunt star as Tom and Violet, whose matrimonial happiness is perpetually delayed by everything from bad luck to professional complications. The pundits say The Five-Year Engagement is way too long, and not every gag is a winner, but it’s redeemed by some big laughs and the sweet, believable chemistry between its leads. (Check out our countdown of the best-reviewed wedding movies here.)

Safe

59%

Jason Statham is equally adept at roundhouse kicks and existential brooding. And while not every Statham vehicle is created equal, critics say Safe is better than most; though it’s formulaic to the bone, the film is gritty and exciting thanks in large part to its star’s charisma and acrobatics. Statham stars as Luke Wright, an ultimate fighter who botches a fixed fight, drawing the ire of the mafia. However, when he rescues and protects a 12-year-old girl with valuable information in her head, the two are pursued by both mobsters and corrupt government officials. The pundits say Safe is really predictable, but it’s an efficient, tough yarn that should satisfy adrenaline junkies. (Check out this week’s Total Recall, in which we run down memorable movies with matching titles.)

The Raven

22%

The Raven is an odd (if intriguing) bird: it’s a period thriller in which Edgar Allen Poe helps to track a serial killer inspired by the author’s most macabre works. But, to paraphraseth the titular poem, critics say the result has made them weak and weary, as it vainly tries to borrow from fantastic terrors we’ve seen before. After a series of brutal slayings, a young detective calls upon Poe (John Cusack) to help ensure that the writer’s most homicidal fan will kill nevermore. The pundits say The Raven has a spooky gothic look, but it’s mostly a gloomy procedural that offers few thrills — or insights into Poe’s life and works. (Check out Cusack’s Five Favorite Films here.).)

Also opening this week in limited release:

Tag Cloud

Masterpiece New York Comic Con Film book adaptation young adult The Walt Disney Company Indigenous police drama popular GIFs Opinion Tomatazos hispanic heritage month Tarantino Comedy obi wan superman Kids & Family scary MGM documentaries 73rd Emmy Awards saw TV Tubi technology Star Wars Celebration Image Comics new zealand scene in color series Character Guide 2019 Country crime drama Sundance TV Baby Yoda book franchise Women's History Month blaxploitation TCA 2021 Turner Classic Movies game of thrones Red Carpet political drama politics james bond TLC SXSW screen actors guild comedies screenings nature 007 Classic Film toy story reviews IMDb TV YouTube TV movies olympics Box Office AMC PBS TV Land TCA 2017 green book First Look suspense 1990s Hear Us Out dogs Wes Anderson true crime cults DC Universe animated critics Disney Channel Pet Sematary BBC 2016 cinemax razzies thriller Warner Bros. Turner 94th Oscars TruTV target crossover Comedy Central interviews IFC streaming Heroines CBS All Access Trailer legend psychological thriller diversity a nightmare on elm street mockumentary slasher PlayStation stand-up comedy CBS Musical lord of the rings sitcom travel all-time Endgame japanese Nominations slashers sequels scene in color Year in Review worst Sony Pictures E3 Amazon Prime Video psycho theme song 4/20 satire NBA Election Vudu 2018 godzilla dramedy sag awards TIFF Marathons spanish language Premiere Dates MSNBC Pacific Islander Star Trek docudrama The CW archives NYCC halloween GLAAD Avengers VH1 Best Picture elevated horror Apple Black History Month zombies blockbuster Ellie Kemper football Fargo laika Lifetime Christmas movies APB Comics on TV action-comedy dragons kids Valentine's Day sports The Arrangement serial killer justice league First Reviews nfl Crackle Amazon Prime Mary poppins new star wars movies Certified Fresh comic books Chilling Adventures of Sabrina doctor who IFC Films 71st Emmy Awards universal monsters Best and Worst See It Skip It die hard Neflix canceled ESPN Writers Guild of America OWN 20th Century Fox black DGA werewolf Rom-Com stoner Photos Emmys South by Southwest Film Festival classics based on movie Rock Sneak Peek 2017 golden globes Thanksgiving prank Fall TV Adult Swim Geeked Week live action FX on Hulu Podcast Watching Series king arthur A24 twilight Best Actress ABC video on demand Winners Pop TV crime rotten movies we love HFPA mission: impossible comic book movies latino biography name the review strong female leads TCM Cosplay japan Oscars Disney Acorn TV AMC Plus Martial Arts transformers Chernobyl spider-man vs. MTV Brie Larson ViacomCBS art house Biopics SXSW 2022 CMT rotten Comic-Con@Home 2021 Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt joker trailers USA Network Marvel Television Disney streaming service jurassic park critic resources high school news christmas movies SundanceTV aliens Tokyo Olympics Logo Pop DC Comics DC streaming service Academy Awards romantic comedy FX The Purge The Academy sequel cancelled television Song of Ice and Fire Bravo TBS ratings 2015 supernatural TCA Winter 2020 cancelled Black Mirror Legendary hollywood comic book movie biopic Apple TV Plus dreamworks Film Festival nbcuniversal french NBC rt labs halloween tv TCA Awards dc Ovation Universal Pictures romance Nat Geo Best Actor Tumblr south america Paramount Network Television Academy Paramount Pictures marvel cinematic universe BBC America comics live event MCU women chucky richard e. Grant Extras CNN Oscar GoT remakes asian-american telelvision rt archives Amazon revenge Superheroes venice quibi war documentary Anna Paquin Fox News Comic Book USA free movies ID streamig boxing Prime Video spain Best Director streaming movies anime adenture mob Lucasfilm teaser witnail harry potter Travel Channel Elton John indie natural history rom-coms social media BET Awards Pride Month facebook scary movies Lionsgate criterion composers talk show emmy awards Calendar Binge Guide worst movies Christmas Native Hallmark Christmas movies blockbusters Amazon Studios 99% 90s finale Holidays kong black comedy Nickelodeon Holiday Set visit Netflix Syfy spider-verse 24 frames cops fresh Disney+ Disney Plus Spike Britbox stop motion binge Arrowverse Spectrum Originals science fiction trophy reboot PaleyFest American Society of Cinematographers space foreign The Witch spinoff Polls and Games dceu WarnerMedia cooking directors OneApp Teen television Music Reality Competition Pirates obituary summer preview dexter zero dark thirty Discovery Channel italian Grammys YouTube Premium tv talk spanish The Walking Dead singing competition debate sopranos mcc Food Network boxoffice Western breaking bad festival fast and furious indiana jones comic casting Columbia Pictures Family canceled TV shows Rocky rt labs critics edition ABC Signature films adventure Mystery Esquire royal family X-Men mutant children's TV cars Super Bowl best new york Sundance SDCC crime thriller TV One versus period drama RT History Countdown hidden camera Hulu Peacock Emmy Nominations Infographic summer TV preview hist YouTube Red Showtime anthology Apple TV+ Broadway 2020 Netflix Christmas movies BET monster movies Mudbound aapi batman Mary Poppins Returns Lifetime movie king kong Cannes golden globe awards 93rd Oscars ghosts Pixar Hallmark Rocketman Fantasy basketball Disney Plus 78th Annual Golden Globe Awards ABC Family child's play Interview know your critic HBO Go DirecTV Stephen King Quiz australia Alien heist movie Schedule Mindy Kaling Mary Tyler Moore 45 unscripted festivals spy thriller adaptation miniseries Crunchyroll Animation San Diego Comic-Con History jamie lee curtis Focus Features Summer FOX Cartoon Network robots superhero Ghostbusters Exclusive Video Trophy Talk Video Games Hollywood Foreign Press Association renewed TV shows 72 Emmy Awards Captain marvel Sci-Fi 21st Century Fox movies Horror Fox Searchlight concert Marvel scene in color film series FXX posters Paramount Plus game show genre Toys docuseries Epix Trivia hispanic vampires cancelled TV shows HBO RT21 BBC One scorecard YA ITV TV renewals CW Seed Winter TV broadcast international Television Critics Association dark comiccon disaster BAFTA award winner target scene in color Action zombie series independent El Rey Spring TV cancelled TV series WGN Walt Disney Pictures President Reality Sundance Now wonder woman 79th Golden Globes Awards Tags: Comedy A&E Freeform Star Wars VOD parents Universal National Geographic LGBTQ Instagram Live what to watch TNT LGBT Shudder Drama leaderboard Funimation video deadpool Marvel Studios Awards kaiju Musicals Dark Horse Comics Superheroe Paramount E! summer TV Shondaland gangster cats HBO Max toronto feel good Starz medical drama Sony discovery historical drama Creative Arts Emmys VICE marvel comics pirates of the caribbean cartoon Awards Tour