Salmon Fishing in the Yemen is an uneven British romantic comedy-drama film. While its first half is witty, funny and works like a charm, the later part takes a deep dive and never recovers. Director Lasse Hallström demonstrates creativity in the positioning of shots, and a steady hand in moving the story forward in the earlier part of the film, that you are left wondering what happened later. This seems to be, at least in part, an issue with the screenplay (which, again, is so well-written in its first half, by Simon Beaufoy, based on a novel of the same name by Paul Torday,). The story should have stayed focused on the lighter side of matters rather than sink into the muddy and, in this case, not so credible depiction of relationships. It’s almost curious that the more fictional part of the story – bringing Salmon fishing to the desert, seems in the film more believable than the personal relationships the two main characters have with their spouses.
With that said, Emily Blunt, Ewan McGregor and Kristin Scott Thomas, as well as the other members of the cast, are simply delightful.
All in all, it’s a nice weekend romantic movie to watch. Just be ready for a letdown as the plot takes a turn into an expected and dull ending.