Metascore
73

Generally favorable reviews - based on 31 Critics

Critic score distribution:
  1. Positive: 27 out of 31
  2. Negative: 0 out of 31
  1. Reviewed by: Manohla Dargis
    Apr 26, 2012
    90
    The movie is a curiosity cabinet of visual pleasures but so breezy and lightly funny that you may not realize at first how good it is.
  2. Reviewed by: Claudia Puig
    Apr 26, 2012
    88
    May be far more ragtag than swashbuckling, but the film is sure-footed, witty and zany fun.
  3. Reviewed by: Adam Markovitz
    Apr 25, 2012
    83
    You can almost smell the brine in the boat helmed by Pirate Captain (Hugh Grant) on his quest to win Pirate of the Year.
  4. Reviewed by: Pete Hammond
    Apr 27, 2012
    80
    The Pirates! Band of Misfits is one of the funniest animated films in years, or to put it in terms you scallywags can understand: it's a treasure trove of laughs.
  5. Reviewed by: Kenneth Turan
    Apr 26, 2012
    80
    A clever piece of business that is a complete pleasure to experience.
  6. Reviewed by: Bill Goodykoontz
    Apr 25, 2012
    80
    The lunacy begins early in The Pirates! Band of Misfits and never lets up.
  7. Reviewed by: David Fear
    Apr 24, 2012
    80
    No one else has come close to translating England's homegrown blend of deadpan and madcap for a younger audience, much less with such impressive Claymated technique. You couldn't ask for better lesson in "Anglo-Absurdism for Beginners."
  8. Reviewed by: Peter Bradshaw
    Mar 29, 2012
    80
    It is effortlessly and unassumingly funny – and terrifically smart.
  9. Reviewed by: Olly Richards
    Mar 26, 2012
    80
    Another Aardman triumph. The animation house's most technically ambitious project so far and, if not quite at the genius level of Wallace & Gromit, still a comedy treasure and far too good just for kids.
  10. Reviewed by: John DeFore
    Mar 26, 2012
    80
    A delightful romp whose varied pleasures should please kids all along the age spectrum.
  11. Reviewed by: Leslie Felperin
    Mar 26, 2012
    80
    Although this family-friendly tale of feckless adventurers pursuing a prize is consistently funnier than "Arthur," in language, humor and attitude it's as endearingly British as Yorkshire pudding, soccer hooliganism and wonky teeth.
  12. Reviewed by: Ian Buckwalter
    Apr 27, 2012
    75
    Barely a moment goes by without a well-orchestrated joke (or three), and it's paced as briskly as a clipper in front of a stiff tailwind.
  13. Reviewed by: Sara Stewart
    Apr 27, 2012
    75
    The biggest thrill for this mild-mannered crew isn't plundering or plank-walking, but Ham Night.
  14. 75
    Designed to please all generations of irreverent humour-lovers, The Pirates! Band of Misfits may not be heart-warming (it is about nasty, scurvy pirates!) but it's breezy rollicking fun.
  15. Reviewed by: Amy Biancolli
    Apr 26, 2012
    75
    That the film happens to be in 3-D, with digitized settings and backgrounds, doesn't detract from the timeworn charm of watching blob-like characters lurch erratically through harebrained comic pratfalls.
  16. Reviewed by: Tom Russo
    Apr 26, 2012
    75
    The movie could also teach something to the makers of "Pirates of the Caribbean" about delivering a story quirky enough to actually stick with you.
  17. Reviewed by: M. E. Russell
    Apr 26, 2012
    75
    It's better at being droll than laugh-out-loud funny.
  18. Reviewed by: Michael Phillips
    Apr 26, 2012
    75
    Uneven but rollicking, The Pirates! has a personality to call its own.
  19. Reviewed by: Tasha Robinson
    Apr 25, 2012
    75
    Pirates! comes with all the usual Aardman strengths intact, particularly the sense that its characters and creators alike are too good-hearted and sweet to nitpick.
  20. Reviewed by: Steve Persall
    Apr 25, 2012
    75
    The movie's memorable moments involve a silently expressive dodo bird and "man-panzee," stealing the show from human caricatures acting silly.
  21. Reviewed by: James Berardinelli
    Apr 23, 2012
    75
    Suffused with satire, wit, and the dry, tongue-in-cheek flavor of comedy one rarely finds in American productions, this stop-motion animated excursion pokes fun at pirate conventions while representing icons Queen Victoria and Charles Darwin as a bitch and a twit, respectively.
  22. Reviewed by: Michelle Orange
    Apr 27, 2012
    70
    It's all rather casual - not unengaging, exactly, but lacking a narrative energy all its own.
  23. Reviewed by: Richard Corliss
    Apr 26, 2012
    70
    A cheerful entertainment, suitable for kids and parents of the brighter stripe. It's just not Nick Park great.
  24. Reviewed by: Nick Pinkerton
    Apr 24, 2012
    70
    A script that consistently finds fresh outlets for its running gags makes for a sufficiently rollicking pleasure cruise.
  25. Reviewed by: Marjorie Baumgarten
    Apr 25, 2012
    67
    Better use should have been made of the voice talent provided by Jeremy Piven, Salma Hayek, and Lenny Henry than the meager cameos their characters have. But no one here needs to walk the plank.
  26. Reviewed by: Jody Mitori
    Apr 27, 2012
    63
    The movie is missing the zippy chases and lovable characters of Aardman studio's previous films ("Arthur Christmas," "Chicken Run").
  27. Reviewed by: Michael O'Sullivan
    Apr 26, 2012
    63
    Like many Aardman films, The Pirates! is awash with silliness. There are far more fleeting visual jokes than one can possibly digest in a single viewing. It makes for an experience that, while geared toward younger, more fidgety audiences, has enough humor to keep Mom and Dad from falling asleep.
  28. Reviewed by: Elizabeth Weitzman
    Apr 26, 2012
    60
    The claymation visuals are charming, and an enthusiastic, if somewhat underused, cast works hard to sell the better jokes (though the funniest gag is a silent monkey butler).
  29. Reviewed by: Neil Smith
    Mar 28, 2012
    60
    Though we'd love to see how Aardman handle Defoe's followup, An Adventure With Communists, this amiable but overstretched diversion is unlikely to spawn a Caribbean franchise.
  30. Reviewed by: Chuck Bowen
    Apr 25, 2012
    50
    The film is content as it is to run clever one-liners and 19th-century pop-cultural references into the same comedic whirlpool.
  31. Reviewed by: Mike Scott
    Apr 27, 2012
    40
    What you won't find amid the clashing cutlasses and flashing foils, however, is anything resembling a rapier wit.
User Score
6.8

Generally favorable reviews- based on 110 Ratings

User score distribution:
  1. Positive: 25 out of 32
  2. Negative: 2 out of 32
  1. Apr 28, 2012
    8
    The 3D is worthwhile; you get your money's worth for the glasses. The stop motion animation is overall very smooth, and the film is chock full of sight gags and verbal humor. What makes The Pirates on par with Pixar films is that it's just as much fun for adults as it is for kids. The humor is often sly, and may sail over the heads of children, but there's also cartoony sight gags the kids will enjoy. Full review on my blog. Full Review »
  2. Jun 3, 2012
    6
    The Visuals Are Charming As Well As Everything Else In The Movie..
    I Have To Bring My Score Down From A 8 To A 6 Because The Voice's Are
    Really Bad...
    I Think Everyone Wanted This To Be Bigger And Better...
    Sadly I Really Wanted Alot More... Still Not A Bad Movie...
    60%
    Full Review »
  3. May 15, 2012
    8
    Another hit for Aardman! While maybe not as good as Chicken Run, Wallace & Gromit or Arthur Christmas, it is better than Flushed Away and holds it own very well against other animated films. It's animation is superb, it's dialogue (while not hilarious) is well written and funny, and the voice acting is good. There's something about it which didn't quite make it an instant classic, something which I can't quite put my finger on... This is a shame as obviously lots of love and hard work have gone into this film. If you haven't yet watched the film, do so, as everyone in your family will probably enjoy it. Full Review »