Salmon fishing in the Yemen
The incomplete angler
SALMON FISHING IN THE YEMEN
Director: Lasse Hallstrom
Running time: 107 minutes
The project seems ridiculous. In an effort to be associated with some positive publicity from the Middle East, the British government backs the idea of a wealthy sheikh constructing an environment for Scottish salmon in the desolate wastes of the Yemen.
Fred (Ewan McGregor), a scientist from the Department of Fisheries, and Harriet (Emily Blunt) from the firm which represents the sheikh’s business interests in London, are pushed together to make the project work. The viability of the impossible project becomes a metaphor for faith that, despite all obstacles and disappointment in life, good things can happen.
Faith in faith
Can science unite with religion? Can there be a way out of a bad marriage into fulfilling love? Can people of acutely diverse cultures live in peace? In a failing secular world the film gently suggests that we need to believe such things can be done.
As human beings we have no problem in accepting the psychological benefits of faith. It tends to uplift us with hope. But the film, in true postmodern style, seems to deliberately shy away from asking whether or not faith is founded in reality. What is missing is any mention of the object of faith, even for the Muslim billionaire ruler.
What separates us from the film’s outlook is that as evangelical Christians we are quite willing to give a reason for the hope that is in us. (An interesting film, but note there is some awfully bad language.)