Eric Steel: Kiss the Water

Fly fishing is perhaps not the most popular topic for cinema, yet Eric Steel’s lyrical film, Kiss the Water, shows a new side to this niche hobby by focusing on the devotion and love of one woman to her craft. Reading the obituaries of The New York Times, the story of Megan Boyd, a woman who created intricate and beautiful fishing flies from her cottage in remote Scotland, stood out to Steel. Despite having no knowledge of fishing or Scotland, he was mesmerised by the story behind the woman.

The film shows the care and toil that goes into the creation of the flies; twirled feather, fur, gold and silver entwine to create a lethal artwork. Boyd’s flies carry a certain myth and every time one is cast for the Atlantic salmon, the stories unwind and embellish the fairy tale. Challenging the conventions of documentary film-making, Kiss the Water mingles fact and fiction and weaves together interview footage, landscapes, the craft of fly tying and hand painted animation to create a poetic insight into the life of Megan Boyd. Attempting to understand the woman he never met, Steel imagines a haunting backstory of fantasy and desire for his isolated subject.

Part of the official selection for the Tribeca Film Festival in 2013, this enigmatic and mysterious film from the director of the acclaimed documentary The Bridge is not one to miss. Kiss the Water is currently showing at a variety of locations across the UK and the USA. For the full listings visit:

1. Eric Steel, Kiss the Water, 2013