Saturday, 4 August 2012

The Best Golf Movies of All Time

bill murry caddyshack gopher
When released in July 1980, it received bad reviews. It features childish lines and risque humor. Even director Harold Ramis wasn't sure about his production because very little went according to the movie script. But 20 years later, "Caddyshack" is viewed as a classic.

"It's great to see it eventually worm its way into everybody's heart," Ramis says in an interview featured in the Special Edition version released in 1999. "I'm proud of it."

Fifty-seven percent of golf pros polled named it the best golf movie made. "Tin Cup," filmed at Houston's Kingwood Country Club and Deerwood Golf Club, received 29 percent of the vote with "Dead Solid Perfect" picking up the other 14 percent.

Other movies named among the top three choices of pros were "Follow The Sun," "Happy Gilmore," "Babe," and "The Caddy."

"It got together all these great comedians who it seemed were peaking at that time," Waldrop says. "Bill Murray was funny, Chevy Chase was funny, Ted Knight was funny and Rodney Dangerfield was on fire. In every scene, someone takes the lead and they are able to pull it off and make it funny. It's the best of all-time. I've watched it 20-25 times. "

The impressive list of comedians sent Ramis' movie in a totally different direction.

"We set out to make a movie about caddies and what it was like to be a caddie at a suburban golf course, and in the process we hired such high-powered adult talent that inevitably all our creative attention went to making those characters work," says Ramis, who also directed "National Lampoon's Vacation."

In the Special Edition documentary, Cindy Morgan, who plays the judge's beautiful nymphomaniac niece, says: "I don't think anything in the script ended up on the screen." and Chase agreed. "A lot of the movie was winged, improvised. We knew we were funny."

"Caddyshack" was Dangerfield's first movie (he was paid just $35,000 compared to a half-million paid Chase). He worried he was bombing on the set because no one was laughing at his lines. Someone had to point out that onlookers were not allowed to react because their laughter would be caught on the sound tract.

 Oddly, Chase, Dangerfield and Murray rarely turn up in the same scenes. Aware of such, producers devised a scene bringing Chase and Murray together where Murray tells Chase of his invention of a fairway grass that can be played on and then taken home and smoked.

However, the most famous scene is the swimming pool footage that includes a mass exodus from the pool upon the discovery of a large brown object bobbing around in the water. It turns out to be a Baby Ruth candy bar, but it is easy to miss the earlier flash showing the candy bar being removed from its wrapper and tossed in. The background music for the scene is what you would expect: the theme from "Jaws."

"Caddyshack is a classic," Herron says. "It's awesome and has some of the best comedian actors of all-time."

Lovers of "Caddyshack" are like the clones of Jim Rome. They can quote lines from the movie, which also has a Web site featuring a quiz page.

And who can forget the gopher that drives Murray, who plays the course groundskeeper, crazy. "They spent a bundle on a mechanical gopher and people love it and revere it," Chase says.

"Caddyshack II" came along in 1988, but it bombed despite having the gopher and special appearances by Chase and Dan Aykroyd. Directed by Allan Arkushmore, it stars Jackie Mason, Robert Stack, Dyan Cannon and Randy Quaid.

Ogrin favors "Tin Cup" for a good reason. "I'm in it, in the credits and still get royalties. Being in the movie was a tremendous experience." Ogrin is one of the pros on the practice tee when Roy McAvoy, a driving range pro played by Kevin Costner, gets the shanks before playing in the U.S. Open.
Kevin Costner: Generally the sign of a bad movie

Tin Cup, released in 1996, also stars Rene Russo, Don Johnson and Cheech Marin. Craig Stadler, Johnny Miller and Peter Jacobsen are among the pros in the movie. It also features the CBS-TV crew of Ken Venturi, Jim Nance and Gary McCord.

Randy Quaid is the star in "Dead Solid Perfect," a 1988 film based on Dan Jenkins' novel by the same name. Quaid plays Kenny Lee, a touring pro who finally gets it right - on and off the course.

"Happy Gilmore" (1996) and "The Caddy" (1953) both are slapstick comedy movies. Adam Sandler stars in "Happy Gilmore," which also features Lee Trevino. Ben Hogan, Sam Snead and Byron Nelsonhave cameos in "The Caddy," which stars Jerry Lewis and Dean Martin.

The most serious golf movies are "Follow the Sun" and "Babe." Made in 1951, "Follow the Sun" was Hollywood's first major film about golf and is the story of Ben Hogan's life.

Hogan helped draft the story and enlisted real-life competitors Snead, Jimmy Demaret and Dr. Cary Middlecoff to appear in the film. He also had twice daily practice sessions with Glenn Ford, who played Hogan, so the actor could observe his mannerisms and techniques.

Anne Baxter and June Havoc co-star in the movie, which climaxes with the tragic head-on accident with a bus that left doctors feeling Hogan might never walk again.

"I'm old enough (43) to remember it," says Sutton, who plays Hogan equipment. "I admire the movie because I was a Hogan fan and I admire what he did after coming back from an almost fatal car accident. "Caddyshack" is funny, but it's not a serious movie. "Follow the Sun" is a serious movie about a person's life."

What next? Tiger Woods the movie?

1 comment:

  1. Chevy chase is an asshole, this is fact

    Happy Gilmore is actually a good film, not just good for a golf film