Review: The Last Fishing Trip
by Marta Bałaga
- It’s “same hangover, different country” in the inebriated feature debut of Icelandic duo Þorkell S. Harðarson and Örn Marinó Arnarson
Although currently spotlighted in the Norwegian International Film Festival in Haugesund as a part of the Nordic Focus, The Last Fishing Trip [+see also:
film profile] by Icelandic duo Þorkell S. Harðarson and Örn Marinó Arnarson is not exactly your typical festival offering. It’s not exactly a good film either, with someone throwing up already in its first nine minutes and other bodily functions soon to follow — despite their drunken shenanigans the protagonists’ bladders (and bowels) are clearly working just fine.
Which in itself is not yet a crime, as there are few things more satisfying in life than a truly committed dumb film, and the ever-popular genre of Broad Nordic Comedy often delights in keeping things stinkingly real. But advertised at the Norwegian fest as “The Hangover meets Sideways in Iceland”, this one is not nearly as entertaining as these two very respectable references, not to mention the fact that Mike Tyson is sadly nowhere to be found. Instead, “based on true fishing trips”, the film sees a group of middle-aged men (including The County [+see also:
interview: Grímur Hákonarson
film profile]’s Þorsteinn Bachmann rocking the preppy look) merrily heading to their destination, then splitting into pairs and going to town on salmons and six packs – after it has been helpfully established in the film’s fishing-centred introduction that “the biorhythm of the anglers gets confused and they have to drink one or two cocktails before going to sleep.”
Needless to say, they oblige, revelling in a complete lack of spousal supervision, with women pretty much sitting this one out: heavily – and conveniently – pregnant or relegated to talking about “cock mastery” for some reason. And yet, for all the teased mayhem to come, and despite a cameoing corpse, this particular outing feels flat. One of the most forgettable ensembles in recent history is barely given a moment to shine or bond — although they do seem to share an aversion for clothes – and ultimately, even that pesky hangover itself doesn’t seem to hurt all that much. Still, one can hope that new enthusiasts of the briefly mentioned sport of “chess boxing” will soon emerge, throwing punches and then sitting down for a quick round of chess. Now that’s a movie that should definitely happen, and soon. With clothing optional.
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