Pauls Valley Democrat
Pauls Valley, Oklahoma —
There’s no doubting the power a film about overcoming the impossible has on audiences. This result is nearly ingenious when you mix what should be an absurd goal with a nerd getting the babe in the same flick and the result is either a Geneva Convention violation on sappiness or at least a well chosen way to spend a couple hours on the weekend.
While I’m sure there’s a level of suffering argument to be made for a few individuals, the result here is actually rather tolerable when the actors counter by throwing in just enough British lack of emotion for the Queen’s sake. I did enjoy the scenes involving the country featured in the title and really would have preffered to see a little more. Still, “Salmon Fishing in the Yemen” puts together something heartwarming in the end and does at least pique interest in the novel of the same name.
This adventure actually starts off with no real excitement at all where we meet the British expert in salmon fisheries, Alfred Jones (Ewan McGregor). Very serious and professional in his approach, one can imagine why he would brush off a request by consultant Harriet Chetwode-Talbot (Emily Blunt) to introduce his coveted species into the middle of a desert in Yemen.
Unfortunately politics intervenes and he is forced to at least address the issue with the royal dude himself, Sheikh Muhammad (Amr Waked) when the press secretary, Patricia Maxwell (Kristin Scott Thomas), for the prime minister insists. However, though he may at first grumble over his predicament, he quickly finds his life impacted in ways he never imagined from his marriage with Mary (Rachael Stirling) to his own faith. What follows is a pleasant journey of self rediscovery and enough romance to satisfy those bent on chick flicks.
In the end, it’s relatively inoffensive to just about anyone and should be appropriate for any age willing to sit through the problems us adults deal with on a daily basis. To put it simply, even the things which might be seen as mature are presented as mildly as possible to the point where one of the love making scenes might as well not even be called such.
I doubt I’ll rush to even watch it again on the tellie as the UK residents would say, but it’s worth a one time viewing for boredom’s sake. Then again, I would certainly consider a sequel if he came back as Obi Wan and saved the galaxy using fish sabers. Final verdict for “Salmon Fishing in the Yemen:” three out of five lures.
DVD rental courtesy of Family Video of Pauls Valley.