Wednesday 19 June 2019
Bait - film review
Cornish fishermen Martin (Edward Rowe) and his brother Steven (Giles King) take different approaches to the decline of fish stocks and the ever increasing number of tourists. Steven has commandeered their family boat for tourist cruises, while Martin. too proud to work for tourists, ekes a subsistence income from fishing without a boat, while saving up to buy a new boat. Their family home has been sold to Londoners who now manage the entire row of harbour front cottages as holiday homes. Things are complicated by Steven's son starting a relationship with the daughter of the new owners of his father's childhood home.
Tensions between locals and tourists escalate, with each side believing they are the real community of the place. These tensions then feed into the relationships between the locals, with their disagreements about whether to stick stubbornly to the old lifestyles or to embrace the tourists. Can a middle way be found that respects tradition while welcoming the new sources of income and community? The various levels of conflict combined make this a totally engrossing film.
The film was shot with an old Bolex camera in grainy, atmospheric black-and-white 16mm and hand-processed by Jenkin, which produces a real sense of history, though the radio news about Brexit places the drama firmly in the present day (Cornwall voted by 56% to leave the European Union in the referendum).
Bait is nominated for the 2019 Michael Powell Award for Best British Feature Film and is screening as part of the Edinburgh International Film Festival 2019 at 2045, Friday 21 June at Odeon Lothian Road and at 1520, Sunday 23 June at Vue Omni Centre. You can buy tickets here.
You can read all my reviews from Edinburgh International Film Festival 2019, by following the links below:
Boyz in the Wood a group of teenage boys get lost in the Scottish Highlands.
2040 - can technology offer solutions to our current climate and ecological crises?
How to Fake a War (on my Shapeshifting Green blog) what happens when a rock start tries to meddle in world affairs
Disclaimer: I have a press pass for the film festival and attended a free press screening of these films.