The Legend of Bagger Vance | Chicago Reader

The Legend of Bagger Vance

To survive the Depression, Adele (Charlize Theron) engineers a golf match at the Savannah resort she's inherited along with her father's debts. But the celebrated players she's lined up aren't enough—the town demands the participation of her former lover Junuh (Matt Damon), whose prodigious talent for the game seems to have deserted him. Enter Bagger Vance (Will Smith), an angelic guru who not only caddies for Junuh but teaches him “how to stop thinking without falling asleep”—a description of the phenomenon of flow that's effectively expressed in the tricky cinematography by Michael Ballhaus. After a slow setup, this charming fable (2000) wisely spends most of its time on the golf course, where a starstruck boy who grows up to tell the story in flashback learns a lot about golf and role models. Robert Redford directed a screenplay by Jeremy Leven based on a novel by Steven Pressfield; with J. Michael Moncrief. 127 min.

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