"There is a mystic in every one of us, yearning to play again in the universe," Matthew Fox has observed. In Tin Cup, Roy (Kevin Costner in an immensely appealing and relaxed performance) is a Texas golf ace who runs a seedy driving range and hangs out with a beer-guzzling group of middle-aged men who have seen better days. Although Roy has plenty of natural talent as a golfer, his love for spectacular and difficult shots has limited his competitive ability on the circuit.
His mystical and poetic appreciation of golf comes to the fore when Dr. Molly Griswold (Rene Russo), a therapist, shows up for a lesson. When he then learns that her lover is David Simms (Don Johnson), a college buddy who is now a self-satisfied golf pro, Roy's competitive instincts are aroused and he sets out to qualify for the U.S. Open. Along the way, he tests the patience and loyalty of his best friend and caddy (Cheech Marin) while trying to convince Molly that she is with the wrong man. Roy ends up competing in the U.S. Open and going for broke.
Tin Cup is one of the best films of 1996 with its message that in love and in sports, playing it safe can't hold a candle to taking risks and acting from the heart. This romantic comedy, written and directed by Ron Shelton (Bull Durham), vividly celebrates the delight and unadulterated joy of playing in the universe.