Tommy trained under his father, and together they were an unbeatable combination on the links in the 1860s. They made a lot of money for their wealthy backers and got a share of the proceeds — but with the gentry, embodied by the imperious Alexander Boothby (Sam Neill), making it clear they were common folk and would always remain so.
Tommy rebelled against that class system, fighting to be paid for his wins, not just relying on the noblesse oblige of his backers.
He also did the unthinkable, for a Scotsman, of playing for pay in England — and rebelled against his mother, Nancy (Therese Bradley), by falling in love with Meg Drinnan (Ophelia Lovibond), a servant nearly a decade his senior.
Director Jason Connery has Scots blood in his veins (his dad is Sean Connery), and he gives the family's story a fond treatment. The melodrama is high in the script (by Pamela Marin and Kevin Cook), loaded with family disputes and personal tragedies, as father and son pay respect to and change the game they love.
The most interesting parts of "Tommy's Honour," though, are the historical details about golf as it was played in the 18th century — from homemade golf balls to the then-novel use of 18 holes in a golf course.
That dose of history brings a charming authenticity to a tried-and-true biopic.