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The Phantom Of The Open DVD Review

Mark Rylance carries ‘The Phantom of The Open.’

Based on a true story, the 1970’s set ‘The Phantom of The Open’ revolves around an aging Barrow-In Furness shipyard crane driver named Maurice Flitcroft who lives with his wife and twin children (he also has a successful businessman stepson). After coming across golf on television, Maurice is determined to play the British Open despite having never played golf and possessing no golf skills. After claiming to be a professional, he winds up playing at the 1976 British Open as his first round of golf where he has the worst recorded round in the prestigious event’s history. Despite that, he becomes a bit of a cult hero and even decides to play in other events under different names/personas. 

Directed by Craig Roberts and written by Simon Farnaby (who also penned the novel ‘The Phantom Of The Open: Maurice Flitcroft, The World’s Worst Golfer’), ‘Phantom’ is a feel good underdog story about a working class man with passion but no talent in the vein of ‘Eddie The Eagle’ (although this is nowhere near as good as that underrated film). It’s a true life story about dreams, reality, family, cult heroes, and class that plays out like so many of the crowd pleasing small town quaint British comedy-dramas. Although Craig Roberts attempts to mix things up in the often formulaic biopic genre with moments of surrealism, ‘Phantom’ is a bit of a mixed bag. The presentation is a bit cheesy and cringe worthy in spots and the movie frustratingly never quite digs deep enough into who Maurice is as a person. Most of the time it feels like Farnaby is merely trying to hit dramatic points or play up comedic bits rather than painting a compelling picture of a simple man who may have had delusions of grandeur, but ultimately achieved a goal.

Cast wise, this is Mark Rylance’s movie through and through. Rylance continues to be one of the most fascinating actors in the business. He disappears into a role physically and verbally in ways you don’t often see. His transformations are nothing short of fascinating to behold even if the movie surrounding him isn’t the best. There are a few solid supporting performances here as well by Sally Hawkins (who plays Maurice’s wife Jean), Rhys Ifans as the golf big wig Keith, and Jake Davies as the stepson Michael.


Presentation: 2.35:1. Grade: B+

Audio Track: Dolby Digital 5.1. Grade: B+

Extras include Sony trailers, “The Phantom of The Open” trailer and a featurette titled “Finding Flitcroft” which contains interviews and provides an overview of the true life story.


August 22, 2022 - Posted by | DVD review | , , , , , ,

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