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The Pirates! In An Adventure With Scientists!

People bang on about how great Pixar are, but often ignore that with Aardman the UK has an animation studio that equals it in talent, scope and quality control. The Pirates! is a world-class piece of entertainment, with talented animators bringing their A-game to the table – literally, as most stop-motion animation is executed on table-top sets.

It's a rollicking tale of a band of pleasant pirates and their well-intentioned but ineffectual captain (played by Hugh Grant). Maybe it's because he's off camera, but Grant has never sounded as relaxed, confident and funny as here. With the animators putting his character's puppet body through moves broader and bolder than the actor would ever do in life, they have collaborated to somehow deliver the best Grant performance possible. They embark on an adventure that takes in most of the seven seas and involves a weaselish Charles Darwin, the last Dodo and an evil Queen Victoria. The level of detail is incredible, with some sort of gag in nigh-on every shot, be it in dialogue, movement or set dressing.

Like all the best children's entertainment, The Pirates! is a film that demands several viewings, and youngsters will come back to it in later years to notice things that sailed completely over their head when they first saw it.

Blu-ray, Blu-ray 3D, DVD, Sony

Last Shop Standing

Refreshingly optimistic look at how the passion and human interaction of the UK's independent record shops have kept the music biz going.

DVD, Proper

Lawrence Of Arabia

A pristine 4K HD remastering of David Lean's classic.

Blu-ray, Sony

Blade 2

This underrated "manpire" sequel is highly imaginative, gory and loaded with comic-book thrills.

Blu-ray, EIV

The Sweeney: Complete First Series

Forget the rubbish remake, check out the infinitely superior original series, full of blags, slags and shouting.

Blu-ray & DVD, Network

Phelim O'Neill

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source: http://www.guardian.co.uk/film/2012/sep/08/this-weeks-new-dvd-blu-ray


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