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Salmon Fishing in the Yemen

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United Kingdom · 2012
Rated PG-13 · 1h 47m
Director Lasse Hallström
Starring Ewan McGregor, Emily Blunt, Kristin Scott Thomas, Rachael Stirling
Genre Comedy, Drama, Romance

Alfred is a fisheries scientist who one day receives an unusual request: a businesswoman named Harriet wants his help in fulfilling a wealthy sheik's request to bring sport fishing to Yemen. Alfred declines at first, but when the British prime minister's spokeswoman latches on to the project as a way to improve Middle East relations, he joins in.

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What are critics saying?


Village Voice by

Mostly sacrifices the political satire and epistolary structure of Paul Torday's source novel in favor of cute, if strained, rom-com shenanigans.


Los Angeles Times by Betsy Sharkey

The film has a grand cast, with Emily Blunt, Ewan McGregor, Kristin Scott Thomas and Amr Waked at the center of this very clever tale of modern eco-issues intertwined with old-style political intrigues and New Age romance.


Time Out by David Fear

Only Kristin Scott Thomas channeling "In the Loop's" Malcolm Tucker offers a spark; the rest is simply hokum designed to land overly sentimental suckers hook, line and sinker.


ReelViews by James Berardinelli

It's not a stretch to say the movie works in large part because of the charm and sparkle of the three leads: Ewan McGregor, Emily Blunt, and Kristin Scott Thomas.


Entertainment Weekly by Owen Gleiberman

You can have a reasonably nice time at Salmon Fishing in the Yemen if you accept that it's the tidiest movie imaginable to ever say that falling in love is like swimming upstream.


Chicago Sun-Times by Roger Ebert

This perhaps sounds like a hilarious movie. So it could be, in the hands of the masters of classic British comedy. Unfortunately, the director is the Swede Lasse ("Chocolat"), who sees it as a heart-warming romance and doesn't take advantage of the rich eccentricity in the story.


Portland Oregonian by Shawn Levy

Alas, none of it, save Kristin Scott Thomas giving a peach of a performance as a political operative, smacks of real life or vitality. Even when it evinces spasms of life, this film is, more or less, a dead fish.

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