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The Greatest Game Ever Played (2005)

In the 1913 US Open, 20-year-old Francis Ouimet played against his idol, 1900 US Open champion, Englishman Harry Vardon.

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(book), (screenplay)
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3 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
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Tom Rack ...
Black Top Hatted Man
Armand Laroche ...
Black Top Hatted Man
Peter Hurley ...
Black Top Hatted Man
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Black Top Hatted Man
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Embry Wallis
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Alec Campbell
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Young Sarah Wallis
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Arthur Ouimet
Jamie Merling ...
Young Louise Ouimet
Eugenio Esposito ...
Young Raymond Ouimet
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...
...
Bernard Darwin
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Storyline

Near the turn of the twentieth century, young Harry Vardon becomes a champion golfer but learns that his amazing skill is no match for the class boundaries that exclude him from "gentlemanly" English society. A dozen years later, a young American, Francis Ouimet, fights against the same prejudice, as well as his own father's disdain, for a chance to participate in the U.S. Open against his idol -- Harry Vardon. The struggles of both men for acceptance provides the background for an amazing contest of skills. Written by Jim Beaver <jumblejim@prodigy.net>

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Genres:

Drama | History | Sport

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated PG for some brief mild language | See all certifications »

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Details

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Release Date:

30 September 2005 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

El juego que hizo historia  »

Filming Locations:

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Box Office

Opening Weekend:

$3,657,322 (USA) (30 September 2005)

Gross:

$15,331,289 (USA) (25 November 2005)
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Company Credits

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Technical Specs

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Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Shia LaBeouf and Max Kasch had worked together two years earlier, in Holes (2003). See more »

Goofs

The opening shot begins with a scene set in Jersey, overlaid with the caption "Isle of Jersey, England". Jersey is one of the Channel Islands, and the main island of the Bailiwick of Jersey. It's a British Crown Dependency with its own administration. The King or Queen of England is the head of state in their capacity as the Duke of Normandy. It's closer to France than to England, and is neither geographically nor administratively part of England. See more »

Quotes

Eddie Lowery: You gotta' settle down Francis.
Francis Ouimet: Yeah, and how do you expect to do that?
Eddie Lowery: [looking at Francis] You just havetuh play better.
[backing up]
Eddie Lowery: Keep your head down!
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Connections

Referenced in The Tonight Show with Jay Leno: Episode #13.165 (2005) See more »

Soundtracks

Roses From The South
Written by Johann Strauss (as Johann Strauss)
Arranged by Marshall Bowen
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User Reviews

 
Greatest game or not, this is a great movie
28 September 2005 | by (United States) – See all my reviews

As you know "The Greatest Game Ever Played" is about golf. I used to snicker at the over-dramatic title, but through great visual display credited to director Bill Paxton (better known for his acting in Twister and hilarious supporting roles in Aliens and True Lies) we find out that this has much more meaning than a game.

Though the movie is about golf, it seems as though the sport is just the framework for what is really going on. What is really going on is a story of individuals being told they can't fulfill their dreams, be it age or social status. A conflict between a son's wishes and a father's demands. An English golf legend looking to bring the title home with the country breathing down his neck.

Shia LaBeouf (Even Stevens) plays Francis Ouimet, a caddy with a God-given talent who was never permitted to play golf in the first place. Despite the resentment of the upper class "gentlemen," it was undeniable that Francis had a gift. What posed a greater threat was the discouragement of his father played by Elias Koteas (Sugartime, Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles) who felt that playing a mere game will never improve their poor living conditions. With the continued support of his mother, Francis eventually comes face to face with his idol, the golf legend Harry Vardon (Stephen Dillane).

More impressive than the game itself, was the movie's cinematic achievement. This proved that storytelling is successful through pure cinema. The entire movie could've been told without dialog. There are scenes in the movie that build strong suspense and powerful emotion with only pictures. In one particular scene, Francis Ouimet swings and the entire crowd turn their heads to watch the ball fly into the distance, all but the face of Harry Vardon looking intensely at Ouimet without a flinch. The ways in which the golfers visualize the course offer more aesthetic enjoyment.

A pleasant supporting cast completes the whole. Peyton List plays the love interest and looks worth playing for, and Josh Flitter plays a lovable caddy that keeps Ouimet focused as the pressure bogs him down. Golf fan or not, you'll appreciate the film for its beauty and its reminder that cinema can be a great medium to tell any story.


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