Plot: Zarina is one of the fairies entrusted to manage the pixie dust reserves, which is an important task, as it involves maintaining the pixie dust tree and making sure enough dust is available to the fairy population. She loves the magical properties of the pixie dust and dreams of all the potential the dust holds, though tradition dictates that each fairy is assigned a role and should remain within that role. But she decides to buck the trend and see what happens when she experiments with the pixie dust, which leads to disaster and she leaves Pixie Hollow as a result. After some time passes, Zarina plans to return to Pixie Hollow and take control of the pixie dust reserves, but will her heist go off as planned and even if so, what will happen in the wake of her actions when the other fairies rally to recapture the pixie dust?
Entertainment Value: This is the fifth movie in the Tinker Bell direct to video series, but as the films are episodic, you can jump in at any point and in terms of chronology, this movie is more prequel than sequel. So you even get to see Captain Hook before his hook, which is kind of cool and it is neat to see some of the Neverland elements before the events in Peter Pan. The narrative is solid and allows for more depth than usual from this franchise, as the fairies face the challenges of being of their comfort zones, while also being able appreciate the roles of the other fairies. So there’s some positive messages sprinkled in here, though the movie isn’t heavy handed about it, at least in most cases. These Tinker Bell movies are direct to video however, so they’re not as fluid or fine tuned as Disney’s theatrical releases, though younger viewers are unlikely to pick up on those issues. The pace here is brisk, the story is fun, and the sense of humor is bright and consistent, so for those looking for some fairy fun, The Pirate Fairy should scratch that itch.
The animation is colorful and bright, with remarkable visuals, even if the detail and depth aren’t on par with Pixar or films like Frozen. I still think the visuals are fun and well crafted however, with a lot of vivid moments and interesting designs. I also think that younger viewers won’t notice the reduced detail and polish, as the animation looks good and offers plenty of eye candy throughout. The voice talent assembled is also better than you might think, with Mae Whitman back as Tinker Bell, though her role is less prominent than usual. So if your sole interest here is Tinker Bell, she is around and in most of the movie, but this is an ensemble piece and she isn’t the primary focus, so bear that in mind. The rest of the voice cast includes Christina Hendricks, Tom Hiddleston, Pamela Adlon, Lucy Liu, and Raven-Symone. In other words, some star power and skilled voices are at work in The Pirate Fairy.