Yep. That's right. The only real interesting plot revolves around one family's addiction with fly-fishing. Outside of this, there really isn't any other excitement (and we all know how spine-tingling fly-fishing is, don't we?) in the movie.
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The story is about as simple as you will find:
Norman (Craig Sheffer) returns to Montana to see his family after years of college life. When he returns, his father (Tom Skerritt) is still the local minister, his brother (Brad Pitt) is working for the local newspaper, and his mother is still just a homemaker.
While taking in the beautiful backdrop of Montana (as well as fly-fishing), he falls in love with Jessie (Emily Lloyd). They have a fling and there really isn't any suspense, jelousy, or any of the other things that make movies as good as they are.
Now, Paul (Norman's brother), seems to always have trouble following him everywhere he goes. His miserable life of newspapers (and wishing to become a professional fly-fisherman) is ended when he is beaten to death by somebody who we never hear about. Now, rather than inject just a little bit of action to break up the monotany of all of the fly-fishing (and talking about said dull sport), we hear as Robert Redford (the uncredited narrator) damn near whispers the fact.
About the only thing that I can say is any real good is the beautiful Montana landscape. It is so breathtaking that you won't be able to take your eyes off it. Sadly, though, all of the beautiful scenes are muddled with the movie's primary topic... FLY-FISHING!!!
Overall, loyal reader, I feel that this is a biographical pic that should remain shelved... unless you're obsessed with fly-fishing.
Trust me on this one. You'll thank me later.