Fishing the Balaton

For most Hungarian people the word “Balaton” means a joyful holiday. For the inhabitants around the lake it is more about the workers’ everyday life. And for the ones, who are working on the water, it is life itself. Nowadays there are less and less fisherman working on the waves of the Balaton. The generation, whose livelihood depended on the good catch has already passed by. Most of the fishing on the lake Balaton is done by one big company, but it hasn’t always been like that. Just as by the shore of the seas, the side of the Balaton used to be a paradise for fishermen for hundreds of years.

The 52-minutes documentary is based on the life of a fisherman living on the lake, a day of an angler sitting on the side of the water – waiting for the great catch, whether it comes or not. During the documentary the viewer is able to get to know to the main characters in the industry, the committed enthusiasts of fishing. The owner of the fish restaurant, who helps understanding the question of the hake. The angler, who wants the lake to only be available for sportsmen not for fishermen. The police officer, who fights against the poachers since decades. What were the ice stores used for? Why is the bighead carp is a danger to the native species of the Balaton?

This film shows that the lake Balaton is a lot more, than our child- or adulthoods’ favorite resting place. It is a workplace, which used to be a livelihood for many in the past centuries.