Friday, November 13, 2009


Pirate Radio (aka The Boat That Rocked) is being released in the U.S. today. It's got a great subject--the unlicensed offshore radio broadcasting that brought so much new music to Britain in the 60s.

I'll check it out, but I've already been warned not to expect historical accuracy. Apparently, Kenneth Branagh plays a member of the Conservative Party who tries to shut down the station. As my friend Jesse Walker notes:

Making the Conservative Party the villain of this story is like making the Republican Party the racist enforcers in a tale set in 1950s Alabama. Not only was Wilson in power at the time, but Radio Caroline regularly attacked the Labour Party. The Tories not only failed to lead the charge against the pirates, but some of them bought ads on the offshore stations (as did some Scottish Nationalists).

This happens all the time, of course--using today's political templates on yesterday's stories. I suppose the filmmakers figured it would just take too much explaining any other way.


Blogger New England Guy said...

In that picture he looks like the government official from the Sex Pistols' movie (there were 2- I forget which one) - I wonder if they were going for that?

6:47 AM, November 14, 2009  
Blogger LAGuy said...

I think he's supposed to look like Hitler. Maybe the other guy was supposed to look like Hitler.

1:35 PM, November 14, 2009  
Blogger New England Guy said...

My memory is that Sex Pistols movie was a documentary (of a sorts) and it was an actual politico who had "the displeasure of meeting these so-called musicans"

7:58 PM, November 14, 2009  
Blogger New England Guy said...

OK I did some research and the gent I'm thinking of is Bernard Brook-Partridge, a Greater London Councillor with responsibility for the Arts in 1977 (don't know his affiliation) and he appeared in D.O.A. -the less famous Sex Pistols movie (done by High Times and largely concerns the group's American tour), Apparently his remarks on the Sex Pistols can be downloaded as a ringtone. I couldn't find the quote above , I did find " I believe the Sex Pistols would be improved by sudden death" and my memory is he looks a lot like Kenneth Branagh in the picture

8:39 PM, November 14, 2009  

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