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8 Must-See Pirate Films

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On national Talk Like a Pirate Day, you’ll probably spend the day wearing an eye patch and generally annoying your co-workers with pirate lingo. But at night you can enjoy the bounty of these plundered picks from the depths of Davey Jones’ Locker.

 


Best Pirate Movie for the Family
Pirates of the Caribbean: The Curse of the Black Pearl (2003)

You had to see this one coming. American sweetheart, Johnny Depp’s Keith Richards-inspired performance as the drunken Captain Jack Sparrow, reignited the pirate-movie genre, which had the highest opening weekend for a film at the time and spawned three successful (albeit not nearly as good) sequels.

 


Best Pirate Movie for Kids
Muppets Treasure Island (1996)

The Muppets pretty much, can do no wrong, then you throw in Tim Curry as Long John Silver (are these restaurants still around?) and enjoy this fifth version of the Muppet movies.

 


Best Pirate Movie for Teens
The Goonies (1985)

Sure, this was directed by Richard Donner (Lethal Weapon and Superman II) but you can clearly see Stephen Spielberg’s (the film’s executive producer and writer), fingerprints all over this. Shot in Astoria, Oregon, misfit teenagers discover a treasure map to One-Eyed Willie’s pirate ship. Bonus: a young Josh Brolin (No Country for Old Men) stars in it.

 


Best Pirate Movie for a Date
The Princess Bride (1987)
I’m willing to bet this is the top film for 85% of the women on OKCupid (second maybe only to Dirty Dancing) and what’s there not to like? Rob Reiner’s classic is a great fairytale adventure and features Andre the Giant.

 


Best Pirate Movie for Adults
Captain Phillips (2013)

Okay, so this is not your “Arr” type pirate movie, but Paul Greengrass’ (United 93) gritty flick is the true-life story of Richard Phillips, whose cargo ship, the Maersk Alabama, is intercepted by Khat-chewing Somali pirates. One of the better films from last year and how this scene (warning: spoiler) did not get Tom Hanks nominated for best actor at the Oscars, I’ll never know.

 


Best Sentimental Pirate Movie
Hook (1991)

Spielberg is back on the list in this star-studded cast featuring the late, great Robin Williams as an adult Peter Pan, Dustin Hoffman, Julia Roberts and even Phil Collins makes a cameo. Then again, Phil Collins made cameos in just about everything in the ‘80s and early ‘90s.

 


Best Classic Pirate Movie
Captain Blood (1935)

Oh, a classic pirate film you need? Ladies’ man, Errol Flynn stars as the swashbuckling Peter Blood. The film was nominated for several Oscars and Flynn’s performance in Blood propelled him to Hollywood stardom.

 


Best Indie Pirate Movie
Pirates (1986)

The only thing memorable about this film, other than the curmudgeonly, Walter Matthau playing a pirate, was director’s Roman Polanksi’s real life pirate-esque evasion of the law. Polanksi, who was wanted in the U.S, fled the states but still kept shooting the film; eventually completing it, over a 10-year span, shooting in multiple countries and switching to a French production company along the way.

Photo credit: Walt Disney Pictures

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