Register  |   Log In  |  
Sign up to our weekly newsletter    
Search   
Empire Magazine and iPad
Follow Me on Pinterest YouTube Tumblr
Empire
Trending On Empire
Star Wars: The Force Awakens Teaser Trailer
The Farewell To Middle-earth Issue
Review Of The Year 2014
Subscribe: Get 12 Issues For £25
Buy the perfect Christmas present this year
Farewell To Middle-earth
Full details of our Peter Jackson-edited issue
Reviews
STAR RATINGS EXPLAINED
Unmissable 5 Stars
Excellent 4 Stars
Good 3 Stars
Poor 2 Stars
Tragic 1 Star

POSTER ART
Click poster to enlarge
More posters to select

FILM DETAILS
Certificate
12A
Cast
Ewan McGregor
Emily Blunt
Amr Waked
Kristin Scott Thomas.
Directors
Lasse Hallström.
Screenwriters
Simon Beaufoy
Paul Torday.
Running Time
111 minutes

LATEST FILM REVIEWS
Kingsman: The Secret Service
4 Star Empire Rating
Annie
2 Star Empire Rating
Theory Of Everything, The
4 Star Empire Rating
Bringing Tibet Home
3 Star Empire Rating
Kon-Tiki
4 Star Empire Rating



5 STAR REVIEWS
Leviathan
5 Star Empire Rating
Le Jour Se Lève
5 Star Empire Rating
Tony Benn: Will And Testament
5 Star Empire Rating
Nightcrawler
5 Star Empire Rating
Babadook, The
5 Star Empire Rating

Salmon Fishing in the Yemen
Seafood cocktail


submit to reddit


Plot
A wealthy sheikh (Amr Waked) is determined to introduce salmon fishing to the Yemen and employs sceptical scientist Dr. Fred Jones (McGregor) from the Department Of Fisheries And Agriculture. The sheikh’s representative, Harriet Chetwode-Talbot (Blunt), joins him on the project. Both logistical and romantic complications arise.


Review
Salmon Fishing in the Yemen
When Slumdog Millionaire writer Simon Beaufoy adapts a bestseller starring Ewan McGregor and Emily Blunt, you might expect a simple British crowdpleaser. But Salmon Fishing In The Yemen is bit more complicated than that. Mixing political satire with broad humour, unlikely romance and even an assassination plot, it casts its net wide and gets a mixed, if lively, haul. McGregor is amiable as obsessive fisheries expert Fred, fussing around in a range of grey cardigans like a much older man (which, in Paul Torday’s novel, he is). Fred is a fish out of water around charismatic, glamorous young Harriet (a sparkling Blunt), and plenty of light comedy comes from her contrasting breezy professionalism. But while their blossoming romance looks simple in the film’s trailer, it’s less easy to root for when you discover Fred’s married to Mary (Rachael Stirling) and that Harriet’s yearning for a handsome young soldier, Robert (Tom Mison). Oh, and that they have absolutely nothing in common.

Still, the comic opportunities of the ambitious mission are many. Fred invents what he thinks are impossible cost estimates in order to wriggle out of the project, only for the sheikh (Amr Waked) to snap his fingers and make it happen. Fred rightly anticipates an outcry at the idea of flying British salmon over to the Yemen — but Prime Minister’s spokesperson Patricia Maxwell (Kristin Scott Thomas) has no such qualms, keen to do anything to distract from bad-news stories about the Middle East.

Scott Thomas is doubtless the biggest catch as a ruthless, fast-talking spin doctor who’s as outspoken with the PM and her staff as she is with her own kids. This draws inevitable — and welcome — comparisons with In The Loop every time she strides on screen, barking orders according to ill-informed whims. In the book, her character’s a man, but outside of Peter Capaldi, it’s hard to imagine a better fit for this entertaining role.

But as it moves from London to Scotland to Yemen, the comedy-drama shifts tone too often: both murder plot and marital dramas distract from the light mood as well as the central story. Still, moments of tenderness and merriment help make this an enjoyable watch — if not a must-see.


Verdict
As awkward as McGregor’s geeky hero and almost as confused as the titular plan, Salmon Fishing is still very likable if you’re prepared to take the bait. And it might even be Scott Thomas’ funniest turn since Four Weddings And A Funeral.


Reviewed by Anna Smith

Write Your Review
To write your review please login or register.

Your Reviews

Average user rating for Salmon Fishing in the Yemen
Empire Star Rating

RE: Good

Fred Jones is a British government expert in fisheries who is trapped in an unhappy marriage. Harriet Chetwode-Talbot is a consultant who has just began a relationship with a soldier who is suddenly sent to Afghanistan. Harriet, representing a wealthy Yemeni sheikh, Mohammed, asks for help to fulfill the sheikh’s vision to introduce salmon fishing to the desert country of Yemen. Fred rejects the idea as unfeasible, but the Prime Minister’s press secretary, Patricia Maxwell fastens onto it as... More

Empire User Rating

Posted by Dr Lenera at 20:34, 02 May 2012 | Report This Post


Good

I enjoyed this film see it if your only choice of what to watch this week was this Lock out or Gone! ... More

Empire User Rating

Posted by Bighousewill at 18:23, 20 April 2012 | Report This Post


SUBSCRIPTION OFFERS

SAVE UP TO 69% GET 12 ISSUES FOR ONLY £25
Get the best seat in the house by subscribing to the world's biggest movie magazine today. Save up to 69% and every month you'll get exclusive subscriber-only covers, access to the biggest stars and the best news, reviews and behind-the-scenes reports straight from the set. Click here to find the perfect offer for you


CURRENT HIGHLIGHTS
The Big 2015 Movie Preview
The biggest, best, brightest and sometimes weirdest films of the coming year

James Cameron Talks Tech, Terminators and Avatar Sequels
An extended version of our interview from our Peter Jackson guest-edited issue

Empire's Three Favourite Scenes Of 2014
A hat-trick of moneyshots from the last 12 months

The 32 Funniest Movie Moments Of The Year
2014's side-splittingest scenes

The 10 Best Games Of The Year
2014's top pixel-pushers duke it out for the number one slot

Dan Stevens: The Breakout Star Of 2014
We congratulate The Guest star on his year to remember

The 15 Most Memorable Character Deaths Of The Year
2014’s RIP honour roll

Subscribe to Empire magazine
Get 12 Issues Of Empire For Only £25!

Get exclusive subscriber-only covers each month!

Subscribe today

Subscribe to Empire iPad edition
Get The Empire iPad Edition Today

Subscribe and save maney on annual digital subscription

Subscribe today
Buy single issues

Get 12 issues of Empire for just £25!
Get exclusive subscriber-only covers each month Subscribe today!
Empire's Film Studies 101 Series
Everything you ever wanted to know about filmmaking but were afraid to ask...
The Empire iPad Edition
With exclusive extras, interactive features, trailers and much more! Download now
Home  |  News  |  Blogs  |  Reviews  |  Future Films  |  Features  |  Interviews  |  Images  |  Competitions  |  Forum  |  iPad  |  Podcast  |  Magazine Contact Us  |  Empire FAQ  |  Subscribe To Empire  |  Register
© Bauer Consumer Media Ltd  |  Legal Info  |  Editorial Complaints  |  Privacy Policy  |  Bauer Entertainment Network
Bauer Consumer Media Ltd (company number 01176085 and registered address 1 Lincoln Court, Lincoln Road, Peterborough, England PE1 2RF)