Pirates II premiere: Expensive Joonetang!

Tonight was the long awaited premiere of Digital Playground’s Pirates II: Stagnetti’s Revenge. I have been told (and I believe) that this movie is the most expensive adult movie ever filmed, and I was honored to have been the only media outlet invited to the event.

“Where is everyone from all the porn blogs and slumming basic cable and webisode shows?” I didn’t ask Stoya, who actually plays a harem girl for an Armenian slave trader in the movie.

“I don’t know,” she didn’t say. “I guess they thought you pretty effectively got the word out before.”

The virtual media blackout for this eagerly anticipated sequel was uncharacteristic of Digital Playground, which in the past has sent press releases when a boxcover has been decided or when one of its contract performers appears in the Australian version of TV Guide.

But I was happy and, I must say, touched to be the only representative of the porn or mainstream press invited. I guess the idea was that Digital Playground didn’t want there to be so much hype that a frank examination of the movie itself would be lost in the press saturation.

It was a pleasure to move through the red carpet unimpeded by cologne-reeking men with goatees, a pleasure to not see AVN and XBiz doing their Sharks and Jets routine trying to out-attitude or outwork the oher, and a huge relief to see no evidence of hastily-applied microphone logos.

“Finally,” I said, “the real story can be told.”

I could enjoy the rented search lights, the rented pirate impersonators, and the rented dates of VH-1 celebrities without hearing anyone call Riley Steele “Charlotte Stokely.”

Directed by reclusive Digital Playground co-founder Joone, Pirates II is a porn movie with staggering scope – for a porn movie. Every sex scene is a workout, every pairing something historic, and every effect very expensive. It is a movie of so many excesses (for porn), that a lot of the smaller triumphs, like Joey Pulgadas’ editing and Shay Jordan’s loopy, choke-happy performance, might be overwhelmed by the notion of JESSE JANE FUCKS BELLADONNA TO WITHIN AN INCH OF THEIR LIVES and FOR SOME REASON SASHA GREY IS IN IT.

There is a lot of humor in Pirates II, most of it supplied by Evan Stone and Steven St. Croix. The rhythm section of Max Massimo’s script and Pulgadas’ editing makes for a porn movie with sex scenes that often have fun dialogue breaks in them and that also seem to increase in speed. But sometimes Pirates II seems to overwhelm itself; needing some way to narratively justify ten (or more) sex scenes, the movie is very long and often – pardon the term – anticlimactic.

Like the first Pirates, the experience of watching its sequel in a theatre was both fun (people cheered popshots and, unlike the original, tonight’s premiere was shown in high definition on a 2K projector and the filmmakers knew from last time where better to place jokes and dialogue so they wouldn’t be lost in a big room) and artificial. This generation does not know what it’s like to watch a porn movie without fast forwarding, so about a hundred people walked out as the movie progressed; they were just not used to watching a porn movie (especially one that lasted more than two hours) end to end, while limousines with Katsuni in them pulled up in the street.

Lucky there were not throngs of press there to hinder her passage, calling her “Katsumi” and “Charlotte Stokely.”

But, as the only media representative there tonight, I am happy to report that there was no one masturbating in the theatre. Not like at the premiere of The Bridges of Madison County.

An actual review of the movie Pirates II: Stagnetti’s Revenge will appear shortly. It will emphasize that, among other things, one of the movie’s singular accomplishments is that there were parts in which I felt I could smell it.

Previously on Porn Valley Observed: (2007) Digital Playground offers teaser poster of Pirates II; Pirates: “For the love of God let me die”; You yell “Shark”
See also: Digital Playground

About Gram the Man 4399 Articles
Gram Ponante is America's Beloved Porn Journalist


  1. Wow…even Pac Man showed up.

    I heard he was found in a bathroom with a bag of pills muttering “wocka-wocka-wocka-wocka” to himself…

  2. Great review of the movie–I was there and had some of the same observations. I always enjoy reading your stuff. You rock!

    -Erika Icon

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