Film Review: TOMMY’S HONOUR (UK 2016) ***

Deadlines to Submit your Screenplay, Novel, Story, or Poem to the festival: http://www.wildsound.ca

tommys_honour.jpgIn every generation, a torch passes from father to son. And that timeless dynamic is the beating heart of Tommy’s Honour – an intimate, powerfully moving tale of the real-life founders of the modern game of golf.

Director: Jason Connery
Writers: Pamela Marin, Kevin Cook
Stars: Ophelia Lovibond, Sam Neill, Jack Lowden

Review by Gilbert Seah
 
Where did golf originate? Not too many people know that the game originated from Scotland. TOMMY’S HONOUR celebrates both Scotland and golf, a film that is an eye-opener on golf as seen from the eyes of Tommy, a champion golfer with the humble beginnings of a
greens-keeper’s son/caddy.

TOMMY’S HONOUR is a 2016 historical drama, a proudly Scottish film depicting the lives and careers of, and the complex relationship between, the pioneering Scottish golfing champions Old Tom Morris and his son Young Tom Morris. The screenplay, written by Pamela Marin and Kevin Cook, is based on Cook’s 2007 book, Tommy’s Honour: The Story of Old Tom Morris and Young Tom Morris, Golf’s Founding Father and Son It is a well known book in golfing circles as it won the Herbert Warren Wind Book Award as the best golf book of 2007’ It was also one of the five books that Sports Illustrated selected as the “Books of the Year” in 2007. One can expect high hope for the film adaptation.

The period piece is set in St Andrews, Scotland in 1866. Tommy Morris (Jack Lowden) is presented as an avid golfer like his legendary and pioneering father, Tom Morris (veteran actor/director Peter Mullan). “Old Tom” is greens-keeper for The Royal and Ancient Golf Club of St Andrews, as well as the town’s club- and ball-maker. He is the two-time winner of the first major golf tournament, The Open Championship, which he founded in 1860. He also established golf’s standard of 18 holes per round. But Tommy is beginning to chafe at his father’s dictates, especially in the rapidly changing world they live in.

Father and son repeatedly clash over the unwritten rules of social class, and this culminates when Tommy marries his sweetheart Meg (Ophelia Lovibond), a woman of lower standing with a shameful secret in her past. But there is more in the story with a big father and son relationship makeup.

The film includes a few competitive golf tournaments. But TOMMY’S HONOUR is not specifically a sports film. It also serves as a biography of the Morris’s. The golf tournaments are well shot to capture the excitement of the game. The beauty of the Scottish landscape is also celebrated.

With Pamela Marin co-writing the script, the film contains a strong feminine perspective, despite golf being mostly a male sport. Meg who is shunned by the church for having a bastard child in the past is offered a second chance for happiness in the film. One of the film’s highlights is the mother/wife confrontation. Tommy’s resistance to the class structure is rendered more sympathetic with his true love for Meg.
The film has a good pace that builds dramatically towards its climax.

What initially seems like a commercial light comedy finally ends up tackling a few solid social issues.

The film ended up opening the 2016 Edinburgh International Film Festival on 15 June 2016 as well as winning Best Feature Film at the 2016 British Academy Scotland Awards.
Trailer: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ur8_04V9_4E

Also, Free logline submissions. The Writing Festival network averages over 95,000 unique visitors a day.
Great way to get your story out: http://www.wildsound.ca/logline.html

Deadlines to Submit your Screenplay, Novel, Story, or Poem to the festival:http://www.wildsound.ca

Watch recent Writing Festival Videos. At least 15 winning videos a month:http://www.wildsoundfestival.com

Happy Birthday: Sam Neill

samneill.jpgSam Neill

Born: September 14, 1947 in Omagh, Co. Tyrone, Northern Ireland, UK

Married to:
Noriko Watanabe (2 September 1989 – present) (1 child)

(2012, on My Brilliant Career) A most important role for me, I must say, because that’s the film that took me out of New Zealand, the film that allowed me to live and work in Australia, which I love. Yeah, that was probably more transformative than anything else I’ve done, in a way. Without that film, I never would’ve-prior to that, I’d done Sleeping Dogs, and I thought, “That was a one-off, I’ll never do another film.” And if you look at Sleeping Dogs, you think, “Well, I wouldn’t use that bugger again.” But I did get cast in Brilliant Career, I kind of understood a little bit more about what was necessary, and it was a great opportunity for me. That film changed me into an actor rather than just a part-time thespian.

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THE DAUGHTER (Australia 2015) ***

Deadlines to Submit your Screenplay, Novel, Story, or Poem to the festival:http://www.wildsound.ca

the_daughter.jpgTHE DAUGHTER (Australia 2015) ***
Directed by Simon Stone

Starring: Geoffrey Rush, Sam Neill, Anna Torv

Review by Gilbert Seah

Based on the Henrik Ibsen’s 2-act play ‘The Wild Duck’, THE DAUGHTER is Simon Stone’s gut wrenching drama adapted to a small loving town in Australia. It stars Oscar winner Geoffrey Rush who plays an evil father with a fondness for younger women and with no redeeming qualities. About to be re-married, his son (Paul Schneider) visits, only to open dark skeletons in the closet. This leads to things getting from bad to worse, leading to a suicide.

The film was shot in New South Wales, in an area of abandoned factories and logging forests in a soft light, like what would be expected in Denmark. Written also by Stone, the film is a compelling watch despite its over serious content that might turn out to intense for certain audiences. The play is simplified a bit, with the removal of a few characters but with no reduction in the drama.

Rush is always a pleasure to watch, even in the role of a much displaced character.

THE DAUGHTER is Stone’s first film, a little difficult to watch because of its content and a bit slow moving, made slower with a lot of slow option sequences.

Also, Free logline submissions. The Writing Festival network averages over 95,000 unique visitors a day.
Great way to get your story out: http://www.wildsound.ca/logline.html

Deadlines to Submit your Screenplay, Novel, Story, or Poem to the festival:http://www.wildsound.ca

Watch recent Writing Festival Videos. At least 15 winning videos a month:http://www.wildsoundfestival.com