The Greatest Game Ever Played

September 30th, 2005


more trailers The Greatest Game Ever Played

Still of Shia LaBeouf in The Greatest Game Ever PlayedStill of Shia LaBeouf in The Greatest Game Ever PlayedStill of Shia LaBeouf in The Greatest Game Ever PlayedStill of Stephen Dillane in The Greatest Game Ever PlayedStill of Shia LaBeouf in The Greatest Game Ever PlayedStill of Shia LaBeouf in The Greatest Game Ever Played

A golf drama based on the true story of the 1913 US Open, where 20-year-old Francis Ouimet defeated his idol, 1900 US Open champion, Englishman, Harry Vardon.

Release Year: 2005

Rating: 7.3/10 (10,806 voted)

Critic's Score: 55/100

Director: Bill Paxton

Stars: Shia LaBeouf, Stephen Dillane, Elias Koteas

Near the turn of the twentieth century, young Harry Vardon becomes a champion golfer but learns that his amazing skill is no match for the class boundaries that exclude him from "gentlemanly" English society. A dozen years later, a young American, Francis Ouimet, fights against the same prejudice, as well as his own father's disdain, for a chance to participate in the U.S. Open against his idol -- Harry Vardon. The struggles of both men for acceptance provides the background for an amazing contest of skills.

Writers: Mark Frost, Mark Frost

James Paxton - Young Harry Vardon
Tom Rack - Black Top Hatted Man
Armand Laroche - Black Top Hatted Man
Peter Hurley - Black Top Hatted Man
Gregory Terlecki - Black Top Hatted Man
Jonathan Higgins - Embry Wallis
Matthew Knight - Young Francis Ouimet
Luke Askew - Alec Campbell
Amanda Tilson - Young Sarah Wallis
Elias Koteas - Arthur Ouimet
Jamie Merling - Young Louise Ouimet
Eugenio Esposito - Young Raymond Ouimet
Marnie McPhail - Mary Ouimet
Stephen Dillane - Harry Vardon
Robin Wilcock - Bernard Darwin


Official Website: Disney [United States] |

Release Date: 30 September 2005

Filming Locations: Kahnawake, Québec, Canada

Opening Weekend: $3,657,322 (USA) (2 October 2005) (1014 Screens)

Gross: $15,331,289 (USA) (27 November 2005)

Technical Specs


Did You Know?

Filmed at the Kanawaki Golf Club outside Montreal, Quebec, producers had the club house painted yellow for the film from it's original white. Members so liked the change that they kept the color following filming.

Anachronisms: Eddie Lowery uses the phrase "easy peasy, lemon squeezy". This phrase is primarily a British phrase and didn't come into common use until the late 1970's.

Eddie Lowery: Easy peasy lemon squeasy.

User Review

a Truly Moving Picture

Rating: 9/10

I saw this film on September 1st, 2005 in Indianapolis. I am one of the judges for the Heartland Film Festival that screens films for their Truly Moving Picture Award. A Truly Moving Picture "...explores the human journey by artistically expressing hope and respect for the positive values of life." Heartland gave that award to this film.

This is a story of golf in the early part of the 20th century. At that time, it was the game of upper class and rich "gentlemen", and working people could only participate by being caddies at country clubs. With this backdrop, this based-on-a-true-story unfolds with a young, working class boy who takes on the golf establishment and the greatest golfer in the world, Harry Vardon.

And the story is inspirational. Against all odds, Francis Ouimet (played by Shia LaBeouf of "Holes") gets to compete against the greatest golfers of the U.S. and Great Britain at the 1913 U.S. Open. Francis is ill-prepared, and has a child for a caddy. (The caddy is hilarious and motivational and steals every scene he appears in.) But despite these handicaps, Francis displays courage, spirit, heroism, and humility at this world class event.

And, we learn a lot about the early years of golf; for example, the use of small wooden clubs, the layout of the short holes, the manual scoreboard, the golfers swinging with pipes in their mouths, the terrible conditions of the greens and fairways, and the play not being canceled even in torrential rain.

This film has stunning cinematography and art direction and editing. And with no big movie stars, the story is somehow more believable.

This adds to the inventory of great sports movies in the vein of "Miracle" and "Remember the Titans."

FYI - There is a Truly Moving Pictures web site where there is a listing of past winners going back 70 years.