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If you’re prone to watching cookery programmes on Netflix, this would surely come up as a recommendation if the streamer ever acquired the rights. At a pinch, it would pass the time if you’ve seen every episode of Ugly Delicious, Chef’s Table and the like. But by the standards of current food docs (a genre enjoying a golden age), this is a bit of snoozefest. Andrew Peat structures things around Jim McEwan, a highly regarded distiller on the verge of retirement, working the barrels in the Bruichladdich distillery on Islay.
Switching between various industry talking heads chipping in about McEwan’s talent or filling in with information, the film walks us through the practice of making whisky, from mashing the barley to bottling. Some observations about flavour and process are incisive, and as a primer for viewers passingly familiar with the liquor, it’s serviceable enough.
But there’s an awful lot of waffle and way too much romantic twaddle about “passion”. Worse, the soundtrack features lashings of Celtic strings and wind instruments blubbering plaintively, sometimes accompanying hideously cliched visuals featuring wind-ruffled heathered hills, sun-dappled lochs and brawny men in kilts tossing cabers. Even the fawning way one interviewee is credited as simply “the Duke of Argyll” (his actual name seemingly unnecessary) is wince-inducing. Over the long haul, it’s all enough to drive you to hit the gin bottle.
Source: The Guardian
Keyword: Scotch: The Golden Dram review – watery doc leaves you worse for wear | Film