(out of 5)
Poetic and touching, this is a good film for those who love movies about fly fishing. All five of you. For the rest, it’s a fantastic drama about two Montana brothers in the 1920s (Craig Sheffer, Brad Pitt) who experience family life and growing pains while also being taught to express their joy for life and rein in their frustrations through the sport that their father coaches them in. The acting by all is excellent, including the two young men in the leads and their parents played by Tom Skerritt and Brenda Blethyn, but what really makes it work is Robert Redford’s beautifully sensitive direction, which brings to life Norman McLean’s tragic autobiography without any maudlin sentimentality. Fly fishing actually became so popular after this film was released that overcrowded riverbanks gave way to serious injuries.
Allied Filmmakers, Wildwood Enterprises
Directed by Robert Redford
Cinematography by Philippe Rousselot
Music by Mark Isham
Production Design by Jon Hutman