Pete and the Pirates’ Film Jukebox

Pete and the Pirates

Pete And The Pirates bestowed upon us their long-awaited comeback single ‘Come To The Bar’ on March 14 via Stolen Records. Having toured the world, played various prestigious showcases and festivals and conquered the continent, they’re now back in the UK and ready to embark on the next stage of their world-domination plan. They’ve been recording a new album with Brendan Lynch with their usual sharp lyrical ear, double-barrelled guitar folk/punk/lilt attack but with added motorik rhythms and sleek synths. Look out for their new album ‘One Thousand Pictures’, released on May 23, and their headline gig at Heaven on May 26. For more information, visit their website. Tickets to the Heaven gig are available from CrowdSurge. Below, they tell us about their favourite films. DELIA SPARRER


1. Paris, Texas (1984)
A beautiful, slow and quiet film. Harry Dean Stanton is amazing. Both simple and very complex simultaneously, very beautiful and sad, and probably nearly perfect.

2. Love and Death (1975)
I watched this Woody Allen film for the first time a few days after I first saw Andrei Rublev, I think I could probably list them both here as two of my favourites, but Love and Death wins. Woody and Diane Keaton are great, and it is just so full of great lines. My favourite Woody Allen film.

Pete H.

3. Cool Hand Luke (1967)
Like Luke, this film has a cutting sort of wit which it hides behind a brave nonchalant exterior. It is a film that gets drunk and cuts the heads of parking meters. Paul Newman’s performance is perfect in this film, using the excellent script to show the depth of a man who struggles to find his place within society and to understand his relationship with God, family and authority. This film sort of doesn’t belong. It refuses to be knocked down; it refuses to stay down. We, the audience, become George Segal’s character Dragline. We love this film, would do anything to protect it and those of us who’ve seen it still tell stories about it to this day.

4. Life Is Beautiful (1997)
An Italian film about a Jewish Italian, Guido Orifece, in the years before World War II. Roberto Benigni directs the film and plays the central character. Like Benigni himself, Guido is a charismatic, funny and hopelessly romantic hero. He throws himself completely into everything he does with charm and skill. The film uses slapstick humour coupled with brilliant and clever dialogue to tell a really beautiful story. I think the reason I love this film so much is because it completely swept me off my feet. Don’t read the blurb on the back and don’t read any reviews. Just put it on.

Pete C.

5. Fitzcarraldo (1982)
At this time in his life German filmmaker/auteur Werner Herzog was ambitious enough, and crazy enough, to actually pull a massive boat over a massive hill in Peru, using only rudimentary pulleys and a big tribe of indigenous folk. It was one of the most difficult shoots ever undertaken. Not only that, but after 40% of the filming was completed, one of the actors became so ill that they had to recast and start the movie again from scratch! Klaus Kinski’s manic antics and obscene outbursts eventually led to death threats from the tribe they were filming with. The end result is a feat to behold. For more Herzog/Kinski madness, see Nosferatu the Vampyre, Cobra Verde, Aguirre, Wrath of God, and Woyzeck. There is also a nice documentary Herzog made after Kinski’s death called My Best Fiend.

6. Clockwise (1986)
A very funny and silly comedy that follows the misfortunes of a school headmaster played by John Cleese. It’s no Life of Brian, but it is really funny, and I do prefer it to the better-known A Fish Called Wanda. I really feel the headmaster’s pain! It’s a simple film with simple values but it has a really nice flow to it, and is quite touching in places.


7. Valerie and Her Week of Wonders (1970)
Magical, creepy and like some semi-nightmarish folk tale. I can’t say I fully understood all that was going on. The story follows Valerie as she encounters scary vampires and church people. Somewhere between a nightmare and a happy dream all at once. This film has a beautiful soundtrack by Lubos Fiser, which I listen to frequently. Gentle folky flute songs with dark theatrical twists.

8. Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind (2004)
Probably the film I have watched most times. I, like many other people, kind of fell in love with it. Maybe it was because I broke up with a girlfriend at the time. It captures those lovely feelings you get at the beginning of a relationship but also the horrible feelings when things go bad. The whole thing is wrapped up in a clever twist of a plot about erasing memory. Jim Carrey is great in it too… oh and I really fancied Kirsten Dunst at the time and she jumps on a bed in her underwear in this film. It has a great soundtrack by Jon Brion. The theme from the film is so beautiful yet melancholic.


9. L’Eclisse (The Eclipse, 1962)
This film is a complete overdose of beauty. The principal actress is Monica Vitti, who I was briefly and retrospectively in love with (she’s now 80) and she’s an important part of why I love this film. The film deals with things I relate to easily: the demise of crap, materialistic relationships and emotional absence. But the beauty lies in the stunning cinematography, the quietness of the film, the lovely pace of the editing, and Monica Vitti’s face and voice. It’s the kind of film I’d feel so proud of making if I was a filmmaker. It really lets you interpret it yourself, doesn’t spell anything out to you, is completely un-formulaic, and is full of little bits of detail and symbolism that you’ll probably miss the first time you watch it.

10. The Jerk (1979)
It’s a shit film but for some reason I keep watching it. I think it’s because I love one-liners and I love Steve Martin. It’s basically about a white guy (Steve Martin) who thinks he’s black, has a dog called Shithead who hates him, and who accidentally makes a fortune then loses it. When he leaves his foster family to explore the world, it’s his inconceivable naivety that is so compelling, as we see him find his first job, lose his virginity and generally be sociopathic. Behind the cheap gags and slapstick, there are some really tender moments, especially the ukulele duet.