Wednesday, March 31, 2010

Fly fishing film tour, Arlington Cinema and Draft House, Arlington Virginia

Theme -friendship and fly fishing orfly fishermen with short haircuts with sun visors.

I'm still not sure why there is no list of the movies being shown andthen a place to sell the DVD's after the film. A bunch of sauced up anglers with a few bucks in their pocket = $$$. Good turnout, lots of familiar faces from my TU chapter, Orvis, Urban Angler (and Angler's Lie), Casting Call, former clients, and former biology students.

The show started off with an intro from Richie and then the film started. 

1.The Take  fishing the Snake River around Jackson Hole  (where I was supposed to move in 2001 but decided to stay after meeting  a cool chick who is now my wife). I'm not sure what this film was about. There was really no introduction. From what I understood, the  film was about a guy who grew up in Jackson Hole, moved to Chicago, and  then back to open a fly shop.  My reaction = confused.  I felt as if I had been channel surfing and stopped on this program  halfway through with no [info] button on my remote. There was some nice  scenery but no story line.

2. Aleutian Island - the film started off with a guy and a big fish. We were told the story is set in Alaska's Aleutian Islands and then its going to be about silver salmon. We saw some cool shots of salmon chasing top water flies - the camera was up above on a bluff or ledge and thus we were looking down on the fish.  We were told that salmon don't eat when they migrate, they are in the streams to spawn and die. A few 'ooos' and 'aaaws' from the crowd. A brief mention and shot of sea lice to distinguish fresh fish from the ocean. I was not impressed with the clip. The film ended with a link to the lodge where I presume all was filmed. Was this just a commercial for the lodge? Jeff Corwin had better fish and fishing shots on his trip to the Aleutians for a Discovery channel show. 

3. Rise - fishing in Argentine Patagonia.  A story about two guys growing up in Montana surrounded by fly fishing.  The friends moved to Argentina after college to guide and now have a profitable lodge and a nice truck. They switch hemispheres based on the fishing season. There were some nice shots of fish and locations and some background about Argentine law and no more 'gringo' guides being able to operate down there.  Then another 'gringo' guide was featured. Some shots of the guides fishing, their friendship shared by fishing on their day off, followed by food and drink shots of the lodge. Made me want a big steak and a glass of Malbec.  The story line could make an interesting feature film if it followed their life stories from kids in Montana to adults in Patagonia. 

4. Off The Grid - I liked this one.  They name drop a fly shop rather early.  I found this clip the most interesting and entertaining of the first four, yet I can't remember what it was about.  I scribbled down 'lots of product placement shots-sun glasses'.  I finished this write up and remembered a buzz cut guy with a sun visor fishing in Mexico. So I wrote what I remembered:  Fishing Mexico's remote lodges for bones and permit. The story about one guy with short hair and a visor, two women on the bow of a flats boat, and a guide poling a flats boat and fishing solo. He learned English and is now a guide. Not sure of the point of this one except to
book trips to the lodge and fly shop. This was the first of several with blatant and in-your-face product placements. Several shots of the angler with the camera focused and centered on the sunglass logo. Sure the event is sponsored by Costa but this was a bit much.  Still no interest in purchasing an movies yet.

5. Metalhead - British Columbia (BC) steelhead. I recognize the guys from the AEG films and the dude with the beard who I talked to last year after the show. He looks like the 'give me back that fillet of fish' guy on the Ronald's Place commercials.  A bunch of hard core anglers going on an epic trip through the BC wilderness. This film made me want to get out and fish more in remote locations.  Something new with this film tonight: a story line.  There is a story about the guys, where they are going, how they are going about their trip from planning to getting there.  Sure this one seemed like a video commercial for Patagonia but these are the guys who made this film genre what it is now and  have been doing it for years, they get the sponsors and need to have product placement. Their trips are epic and they get the backing of companies for gear to subsidize their expenses. I enjoyed the time lapse segments of them fishing, camping, scenic shots along with the camera angles and scenery shots. There were several funny moments and plenty of big fish shots later on. Lots of big nets, big rods, big reels, and big scenery.  Some of the fish had phenomenal colors.  They ended with a blurbabout conservation in BC.  What is the name of the tiny one-man inflatable row boats they use? I will purchase this DVD. 

6. Carolina Reds - a story about guys (who were present and introduced the film clip) growing up and living on the South Carolina shore and living 'the fly fishing lifestyle'. I want to know what that rod holder was attached to the guys waist on the flats. This is the story about a group of guys who are passionate about what they do and how they do it, 'how effective the tool can be' one comments after telling about his switch from conventional tackle to fly fishing (rods). They mention a 'network of info' available through cell phones and other modern technology to collaborate up-to-date fishing conditions amongst their angling community. One person can be out on the water and relay reports back to guys on dry land and how they all share this knowledge.  I learned about the methods, ins and outs, and challenges of fly fishing for redfish in South Carolina.  They fly fish to 'escape to be free' and talk about their time on flats vs. offices.  Well done,

7. Heads or Tails - WTF? Permit fishing. Where are they? Who are they? Are they Kiwis or Aussies? The guys have accents and are running up and down the beach looking for permit - tailing, schooling, moving. The music was loud and repetitive.  My reaction was :meh. I did not get it. There were some cool shots of permit schools and some big fish hero shots. What was the point?

8. Into The Backing - fishing for carp? Some random guys fishing for carp somewhere with a boat. The credits were longer than the actual film clip. Reminded me that I need to go carp fishing with Jim who was one seat over. Pardon me waitress, can I get a burger please, my stomach is as empty was this film? 

9. Off The Grid - Beattie productions. I was eating by now (when the menu states you get a pickle and slaw, please include those. And when I remind you,  please bring a utensil, slaw is not finger food). This is a road trip story starting from Colorado and ending in Mexico, or at least that's what I thought. I was distracted by eating. There was good narration but the story was too fast and then I think it ended and segued into another story - two friends steelhead fishing in Lake Erie tribs.  A story about two young guys who are old friends with a shared passion for fly fishing.  Some nice winter shots of the tribs and plenty of gluttonous hens. The guys talk about their background in the fly fishing industry and how they became friends. Reminds me of how I met Tom.  They talk about the weather (icy guides, frozen nets) and how the fish migrate up the streams and how the fish coloration is based on their duration in the stream. I would like to know more about this film, or at least the second part (Ohio).

10. High in the Lowlands - fishing the everglades. Thumbs up for me.  A story about guys fishing the Everglades. A story about a bunch of friends embarking on a camping trip to fly fish in the Florida Everglades. This film clip was long but deserved its time. I like the single person mini flats boat. They describe the species and diversity of the organisms in the Everglades. They talk about their targeted fish, snook. They go into detail about the snook's habitat, snook behavior, where to find them, how to find them, the seasonality of snook fishing, and  how to fish for them etc. Their epitome of fly fishing is sight fishing to Everglades snook that are backed up against the mangroves.  This film told a story, had characters, was educational and informative, and entertaining.  I liked the camaraderie between the friends. Camera angles from the rods point of view, the pole platform point of view, underwater, fish chasing flies up to the boat, etc. set this one apart. I'd be interested in seeing the whole movie.I was only impressed with a few of the movies this year. The start seemed to be commercials and product placements in short and disorganized movie clips. I was entertained by the few stories that had a flow of story, characters, humor, and ending.It was good to get out and see these  movies and even though I was not impressed by all, I had a good evening. Thanks to the sponsors who put on the event. Maybe I have expectations of wanting all movies to be like 'running down the man' and 'trout bum xyz' or the Kamchatka movie from last year.

Monday, March 15, 2010

Early morning pints

Saturday morning started off with some Barra lads at Kitty's for a few EPL matches and breakfast. Then off to the NCCTU show where I wandered around and gave some fly tying instructions to the kids. It was nice to see some old friends from the business, to name a few, Beau Beasley, Mike Heck, Dan Davala, Richie  Farino, and Brad Gentner.

Here are some pictures:

Wednesday, March 10, 2010

Counting down the days for the Spring run!

I have uploaded some more podcasts and have story boards written for about five more. I plan to record one
on the scientific properties of water this weekend and one on fly tying next. I'd like to get set up for remote recordings.

I am volunteering at the National Capital Chapter of TU's show this weekend to help teach fly tying.

I have a custom lesson next weekend and hope to get some good pictures of the stream while out and about.

Tuesday, March 2, 2010

New podcast story boards

I'm working on the next podcast about flies and hope to record episode 3 by this weekend.

Tom stopped by on Sunday night and I had hoped to record a rod building podcast. We didn't sit down to the mic until well after 10:00 pm. Late night and a few beers in us made for a less than plausible interview. I will edit what I have and see if it is salvageable. If there is some decent material I will upload to this site but leave it off itunes. I hope to re-record the same interview at another time.

I have a casting lesson this weekend and hope my client gets into some migratory fish, namely Shad. I've heard reports of some early fish arriving in the Potomac.