The Greatest Game Ever Played
The Greatest Game Ever Played
“The Greatest Game Ever Played”
“The Greatest Game Ever Played” is a new release on Disney DVD (or VHS for everyone still clinging to the good ol’ days) that is based on the true story of an underdog that is given the opportunity of a lifetime.
The film is set in Boston in the early 1900s, where Francis Ouimett, who is only a child, works as a golf caddy. He has a deep infatuation with the greatest golfer of the era, Harry Vardon, who is played by Stephen Dillane. After learning that Vardon, an Englishman, was to be in Boston for a showing, Francis begged his parents to take him. Despite his father’s adamant decline, his mother takes him the next day. It is here that Francis’s real love for the game develops. When Vardon asks for a volunteer Francis jumps at the chance and is taught how to swing a club by the greatest golfer of the time.
Jumping ahead ten or so years, Francis, played by Shia LaBeouf, is still working as a caddy on the same course. Because both of his parents are working class immigrants, Francis is not allowed to play on the course or take part in anything else the club has to offer. His talent is discovered however, by Mr. Ted Hastings, a member of the club. One fateful day when Francis is preparing to caddy for Mr. Hastings, he is invited to actually play the round. Although he knows he is not allowed to play the course, Francis accepts the invitation and shoots an eighty one on the hardest course in the country. This is despite the fact that he took a nine on one of the holes due to the fear of being caught. Hastings decides that Francis is ready to play in the National Amateur Championship.
Because of his social status Francis was at first denied his request to play in the tournament. After learning that if he paid fifty dollars and was sponsored by a standing member of the club, Francis begged his father to loan him the money to play. His father was a very hard working man and was angry that Francis wanted to take on an endeavor that he would not be paid for. They make an agreement that if Francis lost he would get a better job than being a caddy and he would never play golf again. After being sponsored by Mr. Hastings Francis was allowed into the tournament.
In the qualifying round Francis shot exceptionally well despite being criticized for his stature. On the last whole he just needed to par to qualify. On his last shot he saw that is father was watching and choked. Francis quit golf and got a job at the local golf retail store.
Harry Vardon also had social status issues of his own. In England he was not a gentleman and was therefore not allowed into the clubs either. He was, however, solicited to represent England in the upcoming U.S. Open. Because England had clenched all of the other important titles, they were very adamant about winning back the title and proving that the Americans were not suited to play the game.
Knowing that the Open was arriving, Mr. Hastings still believed that Francis could be a contender and he encouraged him to try to qualify. Honoring the agreement he made with his father, Francis declined. But after learning that his childhood hero, Harry Vardon, was to be attending he changed his mind and agreed to play. After being coached by both Mr. Hastings and another employee of the club, Francis was ready for the tournament.
After qualifying for the 1913 U.S. Open, word of the young talent began to spread. His father found out that he went back on their agreement and threatened to kick him out of the house. Francis decided to play anyway.
When it came time for the actual tournament, Francis’s caddy bailed on him to obtain better pay from another golfer. He solicited a ten year old boy to caddy for him, whose wit and know how became an important asset.
In the first round of the Open he placed