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Nicely personal and unimportant history delivered with an enthusiasm that sits well even if the subject doesn't merit it!
Explaining the appeal of Fish Story will not be easy, but it is perhaps something that will be enjoyed most by those that listen to Danny Baker on whatever network will still have him. Baker's call-in shows are a continuation of his style of being excited by small moments of life – something he carried into TV shows such as Pets Win Prizes. Each week you get small stories from memory or life which are comical and wholly unimportant outside of the individuals. Fish Story is based on just such a thing – a tiny moment in an unimportant place which is now little more than an amusing story for some families – one of whom being Caspar Salmon, who is the subject of this film and friend of director Charlie Lyne (an appropriate name for someone who then pulls this fish story ashore).
The film probably runs longer than it needed to, but the delivery is so unassuming that you let it gentle flow its way along. The use of voices over old items in a house is not revolutionary, but it is the warmth of the story telling and investigation that engages. As it 'unfolds' I found myself invested, even though it is entirely unimportant and inconsequential (as proved by the person interviewed over the end credits – and kudos to the film for holding that back till the end). The investment of the central two people is infectious, and gentle humor is what makes it work. In the end it is as personal as it is unimportant – and yet nicely engaging and charming.
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