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Seven Days in Utopia
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Reviews & Ratings for
Seven Days in Utopia More at IMDbPro »

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54 out of 59 people found the following review useful:

A solid family movie

Author: punitivedamages from United States
31 August 2011

Seven Days in Utopia tells the story of a man's failure and then his struggle, and it's a familiar storyline, as old as the heroes of Greek mythology.

I watched the movie with my wife, who knows nothing about golf, and my two children, ten and seven. My wife enjoyed it most of all because it was clean, meaning it had no profanity, and the romantic leads were not rolling in bed ten minutes into the movie. The kids liked it too – it was easy to follow, easy to understand, and had plenty of fun parts.

I recommend the movie because it is a pleasurable way to spend a little time. It is not heavy handed in what little preaching it does, which I know puts some people off. Even for those who are put off by Christian movies, I can recommend that they see it and try to think about the values espoused without dwelling on the source of those values.

I am always hesitant to reveal too much plot, but suffice to say the movie touches on many subjects, one of which is small town life. I took away the idea that our frenzied lives are not always good for us, and especially if they deprive us of the time or the mood to reflect on and renew our purpose and our convictions.

It is about golf, and the idea that the game is an individual game, one player vs. the other, as much mental as physical. In the movie, the main character needed to renew his convictions in order to fulfill his purpose, which in his case was excellence at golf.

It is also about the struggle toward redemption, and the path shown in the film is a surrender to God, letting Him take charge and letting go all of the angst that burdens our failures, whether it's a missed golf shoot or even alcoholism.

Recommended as a good solid family movie.

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39 out of 47 people found the following review useful:

Great message and Duvall is wonderful as always

Author: John_T_Chance from The Attic
6 September 2011

A perfect case of a message adding up to more than presentation in film terms. The story itself sags often, is corny and there is actually limited emotional connection despite the attempt at playing heavily in to character development. Three things elevate this movie to above average for me. One, Robert Duvall... that guy is a treat to watch in just about any performance. Two, I love the game of golf. Finally, the message of altering and living life on your own terms with faith and conviction resonates in a big way. I really loved this line from Duvall's grace before his meal... "Thank You for faith in a world filled with fear."

When reading certain reviews and seeing how many hate filled people attack any film with any type of religious message it helps to remember just how much they are lashing out in fear. Lack of true faith makes all people truly miserable eventually (and afraid) because they have nothing to truly strive for and will always be haunted by their own mortality. We all know misery loves company. They want to drag down and insult those who have a chance at peace. That in and of itself is quite sad.

Regardless, this movie is NOT a pure religious film at all. It's a story about golf and struggling to better oneself by prioritizing what is really important in life.

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39 out of 49 people found the following review useful:

Entertaining family movie that deserves to be rated for what it really was, a good wholesome family movie...

9/10
Author: chas65 from United States
3 September 2011

I just returned from watching this movie with my wife and children. We all like playing golf, but even if we hadn't, we would have enjoyed the movie all the same. It's not about golf (although I feel it portrays the constant battle that a golfer has with controlling the heart, staying calm and trusting your gut, etc), it's about one man's journey. It's about him putting events in his life into perspective, and understanding what's really important. I for one don't see an issue with this; in fact, I believe there should be more movies like this one.

This movie will sadly be underrated by some people with different expectations for this movie. Please rate it for the genre/type of movie that it is.

This is a simple, yet thought-provoking movie that will, at times, evoke emotions that could help people on the next step of their own journey. It primarily is a drama, but contains it's fair share of suspense, sports action, and romance. There are several funny scenes that warm the heart.

I highly recommend this movie if you want to be entertained, if you have an open mind, and if you don't mind thinking about your life and the future. This is a great heart-warming, feel-good movie. It makes a healthy change from the majority of movies produced recently.

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32 out of 38 people found the following review useful:

Rated G but Nothing Like a G-Rated Film

10/10
Author: happipuppi13 from Phx. Arizona ("Arizona Smells Funny"!- Homer Simpson)
6 September 2011

On Labor Day (just yesterday Sept. 5,2011) I got out of work early and decided to go see a movie for the first time in 6 months.

When I got to the theatre I had chosen,there wasn't much of a choice. Mostly kid stuff and violent movies. I narrowed it down to Columbiana and this movie.

I read on the movie poster that Columbiana is about revenge and I really wasn't in the mood for that. So,seeing this was Rated G,I decided to give it a chance. I grew up in the 70s when G meant either sugary or too "kiddish".

This movie is none of that. It is absolutely perfect movie making and storytelling. This film walks an incredible tightrope of telling a serious story,while still making it entertaining and most of all....covering serious emotions in a G rated format.

Duvall is spectacular as is the supporting cast. They behave a genuine people and display real emotions,without getting too sweet about it or seeming to angry or negative in other scenes.

The most violence is the main character's car wreck. He smashes into a wooden fence and busts the rear window of his car. There's also a slight "fight" between him and two other guys. They push and shove each other mostly but that's about it for violence though.

I know some here think that the film has "religious overtones". It's not about "religion" it's about having faith in your own self as well as the man upstairs.

The point is,were given a great gift of being able to think and act out of our own thoughts and choices and will. How we manage them is up to us. Also that we tend to make too big a deal out of things that are supposed to define who we are,in the eyes of others.

What's important,is how we measure ourselves inside,not other people. This is the main point the story is telling us. I give 10 stars,without a doubt and ....I may even see it again!

Please , see 7 Days In Utopia,you won't be sorry! (END)

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25 out of 27 people found the following review useful:

None of my family play golf, and we all enjoyed our trip to "Utopia"

9/10
Author: rking-19 from United States
4 September 2011

*** This review may contain spoilers ***

Just-turned-pro golfer Luke Chisolm has a disastrous first tournament. He has spent his entire life preparing to play golf, egged on by his well-meaning but unintentionally-cursing father. (I do not mean swear words; the language and action of the movie -- even the romantic tension -- is clean.) After the catastrophe, Luke goes AWOL, so to speak, and finds himself for a week in Utopia, Texas, population 373, "375 after the birth of the twins."

His life is forever changed in that week and in that town, as Luke encounters a radical challenge to his world-view. He gradually unwinds lies from his life, and although he learns to be a better golfer, he more importantly learns -- sometimes humorously, sometimes dramatically -- to be a better human being.

Unlike some of the other reviewers of this movie, Luke is open and teachable, and willing to engage with another perspective. That alone would make him a winner in my book. (No, this is not a spoiler. In fact, have some fun with your 10 to 13 year old: ask them what they think the outcome of the climactic scene will be before it is over. They, and you, are sure to be surprised!)

My wife and I went to see "Utopia" yesterday, and we returned today to see it with our four kids, aged 7 to 14. We all enjoyed it, but it tried our youngest son's attention span. Our son, you see, is an active, sporting youngster. "But how could he have gotten tired (you ask)? This is a golf movie, with tournament action!"

Saying that this movie is about golf is like saying a painting is about the canvas. This movie is about someone not too unlike us, needing more from life, and getting compassionate help from an unlikely source. I heartily recommend it, whether or not you are a golf aficionado.

The most stunning thing to me was the meta-story. Hollywood-level talent and production values really come to fruition by finally taking a more honest look at the positive side of small-town life and faith. It takes more effort, more genius, and more guts to write an inspiring story about the typical than it does to go to extremes and create the "shocker." What a refreshing change "Utopia" is, because at long last it may be possible to professionally cover a broader array of deeper subject matter on film.

(And to all you whiners taking a break from your angst to write flailing but miscued negative reviews, you can revel in the fact that you star in this movie too: you're the ones who symbolize the call to mediocrity, while confusing it with propriety. Perhaps instead of writing lazy reviews, your time might be better spent trying to figure out why living a life of meaning and excellence has occupied center stage nearly from the dawn of recorded philosophical history. The relevant works through the ages have been judged classics by smarter minds than ours. History notwithstanding, even modern works for kids on the subject can stay fresh too: the movie "Cars" is a smash hit because kids innately understand how fundamental meaning and purpose are to life. They have not had time to build a facade over their wounded hearts.)

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19 out of 22 people found the following review useful:

Even if you aren't a fan of golf this is a must see. A rare non-cheesy faith based movie. A must see. I say A

9/10
Author: Tony Heck (cosmo_tiger@hotmail.com) from United States
28 November 2011

"How can a game have such an affect on a man's soul? The way I see it, how can it not?" When Luke Chisolm's (Black) big chance at a golf tournament ends in a disaster he drives away wanting to give up golf. When an accident lands him in the town of Utopia he meets a rancher named Johnny Crawford (Duvall) who can teach him about golf, and much more. I have to admit that many of the "faith-based" movies that I have seen start off good then end up being very cheesy where everything works out perfect without any consequences or obstacles to avoid. This one was heading down that path but veered of sharply and ended up having one of the best endings I have seen in a movie. All that aside, this is a fantastic family movie that everyone will love and is a rare G rated movie that is good. While this is a golf movie, this is also so much more and Duvall plays a type of Mr. Myagi character in the way that only he can. I can go on and on about this movie but I will simply say...this is a must watch. Overall, one of the best sports movies to come out lately as well as one of the top ten of the year so far. I highly recommend. I give it an A.

*Also try - Greatest Game Ever Played & The Perfect Game

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16 out of 17 people found the following review useful:

Seems to be about golf, but really about how we live our lives.

Author: TxMike from Houston, Tx, USA, Earth
6 September 2011

*** This review may contain spoilers ***

The book had a longer title, but it was essentially 'seven days in Utopia.' Clever in that the Texas town really exists and is called Utopia. Plus the theme is our human attempts to achieve our personal 'utopia' where everything is right. My golfing friend Jay loaned me the book, which I enjoyed, and now similarly enjoyed this movie.

You don't have to be a golfer, but I believe golfers will enjoy the movie more than others. Plus it has a prominent "faith" element, and some will be turned off by that aspect. But it is what it is, and I think it is a good movie.

Lucas Black is young pro golfer Luke Chisholm who has a giant melt-down on the final hole when all he has to do is make a par to win. Video of it is all over the airwaves. So ready to give up golf, that his dad had pushed on him so forcefully, Luke winds up in Utopia, Texas, population 375 now that a lady just had twins.

Robert Duvall is Johnny Crawford who we gradually find out was a pro golfer many years ago, in the Ben Hogan and Byron Nelson era, but retreated to small town life some years ago, he lost both his career and his wife because of his drinking. Luke in a moment of inattention crashes through one of Johnny's fences to avoid hitting a bull, and soon Luke finds himself stuck in Utopia.

Not all is bleak, as he also meets the pretty girl working at the local café, and aspiring to be a professional horse whisperer. But Johnny makes him a more important promise, spend 7 days with him in Utopia and he will find his golf game.

The basic premise is not unlike the 'Karate Kid' approach, the old master gets the student involved in a number of things seemingly unrelated to golf. Bass fishing, throwing washers, oil painting. But it is all part of the plan to get young Luke to control his emotions and control his destiny. 'S-F-T' ... see it, feel it, trust it.

Black and Duvall are great together. And in this fictional story golfer K.J. Choi plays T.K. Oh, the number one golfer. This is not a superb movie as superb movies go, but it is very pleasant and very watchable, and might even teach some audience members a new outlook on life and what is really important.

I saw it in the theater, my first visit to a movie house in 12 years!

SPOILER: Luke gets into the Texas Open the next week, plays calmly and well, and a great approach to the last hole nets him an eagle 2 to tie with T.K. Oh. In the playoff T.K. Oh misses his birdie putt on the first playoff hole, all Luke has to do is sink an 8-ft birdie putt to win. With Johnny he had learned a new face-on putting style and Johnny had told him, "You will know when to use it." He pulls that putter out of his bag and uses it for the birdie putt, it is rolling to the hole, as the camera pans up to the sky. We never know if he made the putt or not, because ultimately that isn't important.

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18 out of 21 people found the following review useful:

Utopian Point of View

10/10
Author: Alan Dunnary from United States
7 September 2011

*** This review may contain spoilers ***

It has been a number of years since I reviewed a movie on this website. I signed up sometime ago,wrote a few but just never got back to it.

I have a great reason to come back now. I went to see this movie on opening day because I do really like the acting of Mr. Duvall. Almost 80 he's still got the knack for doing great acting and giving his characters "character".

I have noticed some here feel this is either a bland movie or lacks any kind of drive for keeping one's attention. I feel kind of bad for them that they've missed the overall point here.

Not just that this is a movie with the surprise rate of 'G' but that the story is meant to simply give one example of a situation where a young man is wrapped up in the idea that if he fails at this sport,he fails at life itself.

This does not just apply to one thing we do in life but everything. Even when we fail at something,do we abandon it entirely and say "If I can't do this or be great at it,then my life is over?" Of course not.

What Duvall shows the young man is that the game is good but it's not the be all and end all of his existence. The fact that God is mentioned here,well that's just one person's point of view.

It doesn't mean that they're trying to be bible thumpers and try to convert us to Christianity. It is just one way of saying that what ever reason we are here,we have to find that,become that but remember that we are only human beings.

If one loses sight of that,then you end up thinking trivial things are important,instead of remembering that your life and life itself are what matters. As well as those who share it with you.

10 all the way. Not only a good golf score but a fitting score for this film.

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13 out of 13 people found the following review useful:

What Really Matters In Life

Author: Jack Farris
17 November 2011

*** This review may contain spoilers ***

This movie uses golf to answer the question to what things in life really matter. It uses golf in an attempt to show people what is really important in life. One of the things that I really appreciate in the film is that it get's it's points across and leave the sex, profanity, and violence at the door. It also has a heroin that isn't ready to kiss, or jump in bed for the matter, with the hero after knowing him for just a short time. Yes you can tell it is a low budget movie, doesn't have great star power, and has some cliché characters. But, I don't let that stand in the way of me enjoying a movie. The story and point of the story is what matters to me. So when I left the theater I didn't mind the money spent because I left feeling uplifted, encouraged, and over all good. And in the end if I can leave a movie feeling like that with a smile on my face, than it was a good film.

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8 out of 9 people found the following review useful:

a wonderful film

Author: rightwingisevil from United States
14 April 2012

*** This review may contain spoilers ***

this film obviously was written by a screenplay writer who really knows the golf, one of the sports heavily commercialized by necessary must-have sponsorship. the screenplay writer had subtly purify the commercial odor and turned it into a philosophy of life.

what a great casting job! every role was nicely picked for the right actor to play it. r.d. simply did another great job in this movie. he delivered those great words so naturally like originating from his heart. the young actor who played that conflicting young golfer was pretty awesome too. that young actress was also such a nice cast, pure, slender, kind and gentle, a typical American country girl in our dream.

this is a great film, a film about 99.99% without any commercial purpose but was ruined in the last 0.01% when the movie ended with a stupid arrangement by asking viewers an inevitable question: 'did he make the putt?" and ask you to visit a website URL: www.didhemaketheputt.com. when you typed and clicked the enter, it brought you to a 100% commercial site, selling lot of bi-products of this movie. it not only ruined my good impression cast by this movie, it actually made me sneer uncontrollably. well, after all, golf movies are still carrying lot of commercial-wise purposes.

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