November 2000:

Another featured film we think you might want to see!

This month, it's Matt Damon and Will Smith in

The Legend of Bagger Vance

Opens November 3rd







The Legend of Bagger Vance (2000)
Directed by Robert Redford

cast :

Will Smith ... Bagger Vance
Matt Damon ... Rannulph Junuh
Charlize Theron ... Adele Invergordon
Andrea Powell ... Mary Jones
Ricardo Bunge ... American soldier
Dermot Crowley
Peter Gerety
Joel Gretsch ... Bobby Jones
Trip Hamilton
Dearing Paige Hockman ... Hagen Girl #1
Jack Lemmon ... Hardy Greaves (old)
Bruce McGill ... Walter Hagen
E. Roger Mitchell ... Aaron
J. Michael Moncrief ... Hardy Greaves (young)
Danny Nelson
Michael O'Neill ... Ben Hogan
Harve Presnell
Carrie Preston
Thomas Jay Ryan
Lane Smith ... Grantland Rice

Produced by Jake Eberts, Michael Nozik and Robert Redford
Written by Steven Pressfield and Jeremy Leven
Rated PG-13
The Legend of Bagger Vance (2000) reviewed by YMS staffer Ben

"Damon and Smith and Theron all look beautiful and turn in decent performances"


I never thought I'd ever be writing about a movie that focuses on the sport of golf. Yes, golf. But I guess with a bow to the talented Mr. Woods, golf has come more into it's own and is a lot more popular among our generation. Not that I actually play it, mind you. But these days, drive by any sprawling green golf course and you're bound to find a lot of teens and twenty-somethings among the white haired polyester set that populates most of those places. All hail the mighty Woods, should be the golf folks' cry.

Ok, back to the review.


Yes, The Legend of Bagger Vance is about golf. It's set in Georgia in the 1930's, and it's the story of a great caddy (Bagger Vance) played by Will Smith, who teaches a WWII vet (Rannulph Junuh), played by Matt Damon, a thing or two about the game. Thrown in is a love story between Damon and beautiful Charlize Theron. The film is directed by your grandmother's heartthrob, Robert Redford, who does more behind the camera stuff these days, and is from a novel by Steven Pressen. The film notes say it's Presson's version of the Hindu text The Bhagavad Gita, which makes it a kind of Zen of golf. I happened to have read the Gita, so I tried to figure out who's who. I would say Will Smith was cast as Krishna (one of the incarnations of Vishnu, I believe) in this one.

The film is pretty interesting even though it's about a subject that tends to bore the heck out of me. I never understood why anyone would spend several hours chasing a tiny white ball around a huge field of grass trying to get it into 18 tiny holes. The golf is the vehicle for the morality play here. And Redford seems to be aiming for A River Runs Through It on the golf course. Which was another movie that never quite measured up, even with Brad Pitt to make it worth seeing. This isn't quite as good as that effort, but Damon and Smith and Theron all look beautiful and turn in decent performances. This is not the film however that breaks Smith or Damon's recent box office hopefuls turned into box office disasters trend. At least I don't think so. It is a cute little film, and it should do moderately well. Better than Rounders, but not as well as Wild Wild West.

I give it 3 stars. Catch the matinee.



Read other recent reviews:

Almost Famous
Bring It On

The In Crowd

Here on Earth

Final Destination
The Beach
Girl, Interrupted
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