Salmon Fishing in the Yemen

Directed By: Lasse Holström

Starring: Emily Blunt, Ewan McGregor, Kristin Scott Thomas, and Amr Waked

Running a site like STMR means I have to go see movies that don't necessarily appeal to me.  In the last few weeks alone, I've seen the crappy party movie Project X, the absolutely humorless film Tim and Eric's Billion Dollar Movie, and the less than impactful romance The Vow.  Now, I'm relegating myself to going to see movies about fishing with the British romantic comedy-drama Salmon Fishing in the Yemen.  Because I expected a sappy load of crap, I am surprised to say that I thoroughly enjoyed the film.

In light of all the negative publicity coming from Afghanistan where war is raging, Bridget Maxwell (Kristin Scott Thomas), the press secretary for the prime minister, is looking for a positive story from the Middle East.  She learns of Sheikh Muhammad (Amr Waked) and his desire to bring salmon to the Highlands of Yemen for fishing.  Maxwell also learns that consultant Harriet Chetwode-Talbot (Emily Blunt) is helping the sheikh.  With her influence in the public sector, she has the Fisheries and Agriculture Ministry tasked with bringing the Sheikh's vision to fruition.  The impossible burden of figuring out how to transport thousands of fish to Yemen so that they can subsequently survive and spawn offspring there now lies squarely on the shoulder of fisheries scientist Fred Jones (Ewan McGregor).

Salmon Fishing in the Yemen is a fun little film that really surprised me.  I said it.  I liked a movie about fishing.  With loads of laughs, lots of romance, and its fair share of drama, this fishing flick offers something for every moviegoer.  With elements of several different genres, director Lasse Holström puts together a uniquely charming movie.

Everybody chips in to deliver a special experience in Salmon Fishing in the Yemen.  The two comedic standouts are Ewan McGregor and Kristin Scott Thomas.  Without these two, the movie wouldn't have done as well on the Sobriety Test.  Ewan McGregor's dry humor as Fred Jones will catch you off guard every time.  He really steps up his comedic game in this one.  Kristin Scott Thomas also delivers some big laughs as the crazy British press secretary Bridget Maxwell.  She's absolutely hilarious.  While McGregor and Thomas are the jokesters on screen, Emily Blunt is the one carrying the film in terms of romance.  That's no real surprise.  She has a certain talent for the romance genre.  She can develop strong chemistry on screen with just about anyone.  Hell, I would believe her if she said she was in love with a fish.  She's just that good.

Though I really enjoyed the film, I must say that Amr Waked is not the greatest actor in the world.  I wasn’t too enamored with his performance as the sheikh.  I didn't need too much alcohol to compensate for this though.  Salmon Fishing in the Yemen is a fun film that will charm you if you let it.  You too will say you liked a movie about fishing.  Salmon Fishing in the Yemen gets a 0.03% rating.