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The Greatest Game Ever Played (2005)

7.5
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Ratings: 7.5/10 from 18,543 users   Metascore: 55/100
Reviews: 100 user | 85 critic | 28 from Metacritic.com

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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Cast

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

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Genres:

Drama | History | Sport

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

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

Parents Guide:

 »
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Details

Country:

|

Language:

Release Date:

30 September 2005 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

El juego que hizo historia  »

Filming Locations:

 »

Box Office

Opening Weekend:

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

Gross:

$15,331,289 (USA) (25 November 2005)
 »

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

| |

Color:

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Filmed at the Kanawaki Golf Club outside Montreal, Quebec, producers had the club house painted yellow for the film from its original white. Members so liked the change that they kept the color following filming. See more »

Goofs

Francis is shown looking at a yardage book, or a series of hand drawn diagrams of every hole at The Country Club. In reality, yardage books did not come into use until the 1960s, first by Deane Beman and later popularized by Jack Nicklaus. Harry Vardon is shown laying Francis a "stymie" during the playoff. A stymie occurred when a player's ball blocked the path of his opponent's ball on the green (the balls not being within six inches of each other). This only applied to singles match play. The playoff for the 1913 US Open was medal (stroke) play and the stymie rule would not have been in effect. This rule was eliminated in 1952 by the USGA. See more »

Quotes

Sarah Wallis: Are you Francis' caddy?
[Eddie nods]
Sarah Wallis: Will you give this to him?
[Gives Eddie a small silver horseshoe]
Sarah Wallis: For luck.
Eddie Lowery: [Takes it and walks away] Dames. Who needs 'em anyway?
See more »

Connections

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

Soundtracks

Hello Hello Who's Your Lady Friend?
Written by Worton David and Bert Lee (as William Herbert Lee)
Performed by Joe Jackson
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User Reviews

 
Good Show, Mr. Paxton
9 October 2005 | by (New Jersey, USA) – See all my reviews

Actor turned director Bill Paxton follows up his promising debut, the Gothic-horror "Frailty", with this family friendly sports drama about the 1913 U.S. Open where a young American caddy rises from his humble background to play against his Bristish idol in what was dubbed as "The Greatest Game Ever Played." I'm no fan of golf, and these scrappy underdog sports flicks are a dime a dozen (most recently done to grand effect with "Miracle" and "Cinderella Man"), but some how this film was enthralling all the same.

The film starts with some creative opening credits (imagine a Disneyfied version of the animated opening credits of HBO's "Carnivale" and "Rome"), but lumbers along slowly for its first by-the-numbers hour. Once the action moves to the U.S. Open things pick up very well. Paxton does a nice job and shows a knack for effective directorial flourishes (I loved the rain-soaked montage of the action on day two of the open) that propel the plot further or add some unexpected psychological depth to the proceedings. There's some compelling character development when the British Harry Vardon is haunted by images of the aristocrats in black suits and top hats who destroyed his family cottage as a child to make way for a golf course. He also does a good job of visually depicting what goes on in the players' heads under pressure. Golf, a painfully boring sport, is brought vividly alive here. Credit should also be given the set designers and costume department for creating an engaging period-piece atmosphere of London and Boston at the beginning of the twentieth century.

You know how this is going to end not only because it's based on a true story but also because films in this genre follow the same template over and over, but Paxton puts on a better than average show and perhaps indicates more talent behind the camera than he ever had in front of it. Despite the formulaic nature, this is a nice and easy film to root for that deserves to find an audience.


33 of 45 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

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BORING!! franrom28
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How Much of This Movie Was 'Disney'd Up'? cdub_007
About Francis Ouimet shdwdncr
Something i really like about this movie..... joedogfox28
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