The British comedy ‘The Phantom of the Open’, about a worker’s dreams of golfing glory, features dreamlike imagery that suggests director Craig Roberts is a fan of the 1946 fantasy novel ‘Stairway to Heaven’, especially when a little golfer circles around the moon. size golf ball.
Inspired by Maurice Flitcroft’s attempts to qualify for the British Open in 1976, this comedy is also the kind of good-natured movie director Frank Capra would have liked to embark on.
Actor Mark Rylance brings a mixture of angst and optimism to his portrayal of Flitcroft, the shipyard crane operator who, encouraged by his wife, Jean (Sally Hawkins), to finally follow his dreams, enters the British Open. The problem: none of them knows anything about golf.
A different Rylance actor might have revealed the darkest, most impostor slight wrinkles in history. Instead, his character, an unabashed optimist, shares some of the same light-hearted qualities as Ted Lasso.
“Phantom” opens with Maurice nervously awaiting a television interview years after his first attempt at The Open. The scene plays with a genre in which the underdogs often succeed. Turns out Maurice is incredibly mean. Simon Farnaby based the screenplay on his and sportswriter Scott Murray’s biography, “The Ghost of the Outfield: Maurice Flitcroft, the World’s Worst Golfer”.
Maurice’s personal mantra is “practice is the path to perfection”. Still, he may not take you there. His persistence, however, will upset golf’s elites and mortify his stepson Michael (Jake Davies), who has been promoted by the shipyard’s upper echelons. Twins Christian and Jonah Lees bring a goofy vivacity to this already outrageous story as Maurice and Jean, the disco championship-winning son. (This is also based on facts).
The ghost of the open
Rated PG-13 for foul language and smoking. Duration: 1h46. On cinemas.