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A League of Ordinary Gentlemen (2004)

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Filmmaker Christopher Browne documents the mission of a group of middle-aged bowlers as they attempt to revitalize the sport and get the television-watching public interested in it again.


Christopher Browne





Credited cast:
Charles Barkley ... Himself
Timothy Busfield ... Himself - Actor / Producer
Bernard Goldberg Bernard Goldberg ... Himself (as Bernie Goldberg)
Robert Putnam Robert Putnam ... Himself - Harvard Professor / Author
Wayne Webb Wayne Webb ... Himself - Professional Bowler
Dick Weber Dick Weber ... Himself - Professional Bowler
Pete Weber ... Himself - Professional Bowler
Walter Ray Williams ... Himself - Professional Bowler


Tracing the historical arc of the professional bowling tour, the film includes archival footage from the sport's glory days in the 1950s and '60s, through its near extinction in 1997. The story takes a twist when newly installed CEO Steve Miller sets about modernizing the PBA. In addition to Miller, the chronicle focuses on four pro bowlers: Pete Weber, bowling bad-boy and son of legendary bowler Dick Weber whose conservative style doesn't jibe with the direction Miller is taking the new PBA. Pete's nemesis is Walter Ray Williams Jr., a straight-laced six-time world horseshoe-pitching champion and, with 36 PBA titles to his name, the dominant player on the tour. Also, there's Chris Barnes, a young father of newborn twins, who must leave his wife and sons at home and hit the road to compete for the winnings that his young family is depending upon. Finally there's Wayne Webb, a 20-time PBA champion who has fallen on hard times and hopes to squeeze one more good season out of his career ... Written by Sujit R. Varma

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Plot Keywords:

bowling | See All (1) »


Inside The Wild Wild World Of Professional Bowling!


Documentary | Sport

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated R for language | See all certifications »






Release Date:

March 2004 (USA) See more »


Box Office

Opening Weekend USA:

$4,498, 27 May 2005, Limited Release

Gross USA:

$18,326, 31 July 2005
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Company Credits

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Technical Specs


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Did You Know?


References The League of Extraordinary Gentlemen (2003) See more »

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User Reviews

Whether You Like Bowling or Not, You'll Like This Movie
2 April 2006 | by mjs27541See all my reviews

I must start by saying that I'm a big bowler/bowling enthusiast. That being said, even if I wasn't that big of a fan of pro bowling, I would still like this movie a lot. But since I am a big fan of the pro tour, it made me appreciate the movie that much more. This documentary follows a couple bowlers (Walter Ray Williams, Jr., Chris Barnes, Wayne Webb, and Pete Weber) during a season on the PBA tour, which is starting to spice up their image. There are several different story lines that are followed throughout the film. Williams and Weber are the two superstars of the tour, and get the majority of the movie for themselves, but it also follows former team USA member and rising star Chris Barnes on his journey to greatness, as well as a PBA hall-of-famer with 20 career tournament wins, Wayne Webb. To me, Wayne Webb's story is the most intriguing. Williams and Weber have made millions of dollars bowling and to the bowling world, they are two of the greatest living bowlers, but you rarely see the other side. Wayne has more than $1 million in earnings in his career, but he's lost it all due to a party-heavy lifestyle, as well as gambling. He's making one last chance to make a living on the tour, and despite being a hall-of-famer, he really plays the underdog role.

Overall, this is a great movie which you should take some time to watch. If you don't watch pro bowling or don't know too much about bowling in general, you might not appreciate the movie as much as us bowlers do, but it's still a good solid documentary.

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