Salmon Fishing in the Yemen
Salmon Fishing in the Yemen has got one of the better titles of the universe. This is directed by Lasse Hallstrom and was adapted from a novel by the same guy who did Slumdog Millionaire, and it has some of the same set of sweet sensibilities that both of those people are known for. The story is of a guy who is a bureaucrat, played by Ewan McGregor, who gets a call from Kristin Scott Thomas who’s terrific in this, although she’s never bad in anything. Kristin plays the prime minister’s Chief PR spinner and they’ve just had another disaster in the Mideast, and so she wants to get a good story. They find out that a wealthy sheik who is played by Amr Waked, who is very charismatic, has the idea that he wants to bring salmon fishing to Yemen and as Ewan points out, it’s hot, there’s not a whole lot of water, and there really aren’t salmon there. Involved in all this is Emily Blunt, who is the PR agent for the sheik, and what happens is really kind of a very sweet love story. I mean, the first part of the movie is really enchanting in trying to figure out how you get a crazy idea put in place and why you would get a crazy idea worked out. The middle part of the movie is how you would actually get salmon in that part of the world, and the third part is a love story and sort of a terrorist plot. The first part is delightful, the second part is interesting, and the love story is okay; you care about the characters. The first part of the movie is better than the second, but it’s still a charming movie with terrific performances. Three and a half stars.