A Little Bit Fishy

Harriet and Fred talk fishing.

The good news is that the Mister and I finally got to see “Salmon Fishing in the Yemen.”

The bad news? While both of us liked the movie, we also felt that it fell flat by the end.

This is one of those stiff-upper-lip-finally-droops British flicks. That lip belongs to Dr. Alfred Jones, a fisheries expert well-played by Ewan McGregor.

Sidebar: Every time someone said “Dr. Jones,” I immediately thought of his Indiana counterpart. Without the hat and whip, though.

The Yemen sheik and Fred talk fishing.

This Dr. Jones has to go against his common sense and try to develop salmon fishing in the Yemen (hence the title). He’s bullied along by the British prime minister’s pushy press secretary, Patricia Maxwell (Kristen Scott Thomas), so that the Brits can have a positive story to help downplay deaths in Afganistan. It seems like an impossible task: Bringing fresh-water fishing to the desert, but a wealthy sheik (Amr Waked) is determined to see his dream come true.

Fortunately, the sheik has the organizational and persuasive skills of Harriet Chetwode-Talbot, also well-played by Emily Blunt. Y’all know about my love of all things Emma Stone. I’m considering adding Emily to my galmance lineup. Loved her in “The Devil Wears Prada,” of course, and I thought she did a good turn here.

Harriet and Fred are too dressed up to talk fishing.

“Salmon Fishing” is the usual dramedy where it seems like Harriet (who has had a boyfriend for all of three whole weeks) and Fred (stuck in the usual dismal marriage) never will get together so that everyone can have a happy ending. Unfortunately, the screenwriter, Simon Beaufoy, had to work too hard to wrap up the loose ends and cross the finish line.

Add in Thomas’ character chain-smoking (aren’t women smarter than that by now?) and flinging an f-bomb at her son (goodness!), and I’d say just add this one to your Netflix queue if it interests you.

Let’s hope that the “Five-Year Engagement” is a better showcase for my gal Emily’s acting talents.


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