Directed by: Craig Roberts
Screenplay by: Simon Farnaby from his own book The Phantom of the Open, co-authored by Scott Murray
Starring: Mark Rylance, Sally Hawkins, Rhys Ifans
Synopsis: THE PHANTOM OF THE OPEN follows Maurice Flitcroft (Mark Rylance), a dreamer and unrelenting optimist who managed to gain entry to The British Open Golf Championship Qualifying in 1976 and subsequently shot the worst round in Open history, becoming a folk hero in the process.
Reviews:“A light and lyrical feel-good tale...exactly what you might expect from an underdog sports film scripted by “Paddington 2” writer Simon Farnaby.
“charming as hell, it has precious little patience for English classism, and it hinges on a child-like outsider whose supernatural guilelessness has a tendency to steamroll over the cynics and gits who get in his way.
“It even co-stars Sally Hawkins, as all “Paddington” movies have, and all other movies should.
“Mark Rylance with “The Phantom of the Open” has found a movie that’s willing to meet the actor on his wavelength — a movie in which everything is so gently over-cranked that Rylance’s character feels more like a natural response to the world around him than he does an aberration from it.
“It all comes together into an affable movie that, like its affable subject, doesn’t have any measurable ambition beyond getting the ball in the hole. And yet it could still make hardened souls cry a few tears in the back of an airplane, pick the rest of us up on a gray Sunday afternoon, and remind anyone struggling through stubbornly existential feelings of helplessness — which is another way of saying everyone — that the world is their oyster, even when it looks a lot more like a barnacle.”
– David Ehrlich, INDIEWIRE
“Rylance makes golf irresistible in inspiring true story! Rylance compels as the star of his own kooky fable.”
– Robert Abele, LA TIMES
“The sort of lighthearted movie the director Frank Capra would have liked to have taken a swing at.”
– Lisa Kennedy, NY TIMES
4 STARS “A marvelous feel-good film! entertaining and uplifting!”
– Thelma Adams, AARP.COM
“Rylance is also one of those few actors who can power an entire film along with the marvelous Hawkins.”
– Jocelyn Noveck, THE AP
“A sly little gem grounded in a fantastic performance by Rylance! It’s a story about following your passion.”
– Michael O’Sullivan, THE WASHINGTON POST