What are the top five golf movies of all time?
Sports stories are a favorite in Hollywood, with golf movies taking the lead in the genre of sports comedies. Caddyshack tops the list; what else is there?
The sports world has always had a place in Hollywood, and golf is no different. The film industry is no stranger to connecting drama links to acting on the big screen. There aren’t as many movies about golf as other mainstream American sports, but these are our top five golf movies of all time.
Golf is a sport to be taken seriously from the first tee to the last putt on the 18th hole, but don’t tell the motley crew at Bushwood Country Club. Maybe one of the funniest movies of all time, sports-themed or not, Caddyshack has an all-star cast of comedians led by Chevy Chase, Bill Murray, and Rodney Dangerfield. A young caddie at the club is looking to make some cash before going off to college, but along the way runs into a gang of side-splitting characters. Two wealthy golfers, one is a flashy entrepreneur who is a newcomer at the course and a wealthy, snobby club member, develop a rivalry and look to settle their foul blood on the system. In the lead-up to the big money round of 18, Danny Noonan’s caddy gets intertwined with golfers, and chaos ensues.
It seems like Kevin Costner and sports movies are always a good combination. He starred in Bull Durham and Field of Dreams, and in 1996 signed on to play Roy “Tin Cup” McAvoy in the romantic comedy, “Tin Cup.” Costner plays a has-been ex-golfer who owns a beat-down driving range.
A former rival of McAvoy’s past, David Simms, who is a pro golfer who, offers McAvoy a chance to caddie for him since he knows the course so well. Simms fires his former adversary after Tin Cup advises him to play wreckless during the round. To spite Simms, McAvoy qualifies for the U.S. Open to get a crack at his former college teammate. While qualifying, McAvoy falls for Simms’ girlfriend, Molly Griswold, who becomes the cavalier golfers’ therapist. Griswold not only helps him with his wild decision-making on the course, but the two become interested in one other on the way to the final round of the U.S. Open.
Legend of Bagger Vance
Will Smith and Matt Damon star in this historical fantasy directed by Robert Redford. Set in the Depression era, Damon plays wealthy southern golfer Rannulph Junuh, a former World War I captain who comes back from the war mentally destroyed after losing his entire company during the war. He comes back to Georgia but disappears and turns into an alcoholic. Junuh’s ex-girlfriend, Adele Invergordon, organizes a golf tournament with the top golfers of the time, Walter Hagen and Bobby Jones.
Needing a local representative, Invergordon tries to convince her ex to participate in the event. Junuh is approached by a man named Bagger Vance and offers his services as a caddie for the upcoming tournament. Vance not only helps Junuh compete against the best golfers of the time but also helps him shake some of the demons he brought home with him from the war.
This slap-stick Adam Sandler film about a hockey player turned golfer came out in the same year that Tin Cup came out. Happy Gilmore is a struggling hockey player looking to hit it big in the pros but has enough trouble keeping his own two feet on a set of skates. His only attribute when it comes to hockey is fists and his slap shot. Gilmore gets cut from the hockey team, and at the same time, his grandmother’s house is on the verge of getting condemned by the IRS.
Gilmore bets the movers carrying stuff out of his grandma’s house that he can hit a golf ball farther than they can, after he crushes the movers using his legendary hockey wind-up, he realizes he has a potential new source of income. Gilmore hits the driving range, where he meets former professional Chubbs Peterson. He grooms Gilmore into more than a driving range sideshow into a proper golfer who takes on club pros like Shooter McGavin.
Gilmore quickly revolutionizes the sport, attracting fans from all walks of life. At the same time, his rivalry with Shooter McGavin is brought to a boiling point when they make a wager that whoever wins the Tour Championship will get Gilmore’s grandmother’s house.
The Greatest Game Ever Played
Shia LaBeouf stars in this historical picture based on the life of Francis Ouimet. Ouimet won the 1913 U.S. Open as an amateur at the age of 20. The story was adapted from the Mark Frost Book, The Greatest Game Ever Played: Harry Vardon, Francis Ouimet, and the Birth of Modern Golf.
Ouimet was the first amateur to win a U.S. Open and revolutionized a sport reserved for the rich. Ouimet was a young golfer from middle-class, immigrant parents. Ouimet has to battle to the stigma of not fitting the image of a golfer while persevering through his parents’ doubts about a future in golf.