Review Fisherman’s Friends by Jonathan Evans

 out of 5 stars (3 / 5)

“Man from the big city that is a big shot ends up in a small town where he meets salt of the earth people and doesn’t really get them, he discovered potential to sign the local musical band, but they are not interested because they don’t do it for the money just for fun and love of the music, while he signs them he learns that there is more to life than being a big shot and comes round to their simple but purer ways. City people are shallow and terrible while the real people that are of true substance are in the countryside and have roots and history. This is the movie if you are interested in being surprised then turn around now and seek something else.”

Hmm, thats really it, but I guess I should elaborate more.

Fisherman’s Friends is one of those movies that does not get by on it’s screenplay or technical feats, but through the acting and personality of the characters. On these two things it does succeed but I feel there are some major detracting factors that need to be talked about. 

Some London friends get together for one of their bachelor weekends, the main character Danny (Daniel Mays) is one of them. They go to Cornwall for a fun time, while there they spot a performance of the local band comprised of local fisherman and life guards. They sing a Sea Shanty, a type of work song that are very old and tell stories, not like todays music or what they play in the big city thats all electronic and not about anything.

The way that the people in the city are framed is like modern dressing, up to the minute talking business people that are obsessed with whatever is fashionable and are shallow, etc. etc. People that live and are successful in a city have to work very hard, it may not be the same kind of manual work in the country but it is work, true some come from privileged backgrounds so they have it easier but they are the minority and success is still not guaranteed.

The overall message of this movie seems to be that having roots in one place and legacy builds character, to that I say why not travel? Traveling gives you a sense of how big the world is and expand your mentality to other peoples way of life. Not this movie though, it seems to think that you are born in one place and you set up there for life and you and your descendants must do the same, keep that up for six generations and you’ll become a solid person. Granted it does break out of some of these ideals but it holds pretty true to it for most of the run time.

Almost every line in this is predictable. Literally, within the first thirty minutes, I was able to predict what was basically going to be said and sometimes word for word what came out of the characters mouths.

But even with all this said as the third act rolled around I must say that I found that the people had started to grow on me. They do have their charm and personality and along the way, they do get in a few jokes that are winners while even a few tender emotional moments that do indeed strike deep.

There are just about no surprises in this movie but some handsome cinematography, a few winning moments of humour and of course very good music and you have something that is worth a watch. I just wish they would have tried doing something new with the plot or at least thrown in some unconventional dialogue instead of the most conventional.R

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