The Best Golf Documentaries You Can Watch Tonight

By Todd Mrowice

Seve Ballestros movie premiere

The euphoric highs and gut-wrenching lows of golf are more intense than any other sport. With so many raw emotions surrounding the game, it's no surprise that some of the best golf movies are documentaries. Here are the best golf documentaries available now, and how you can watch them tonight.

The Back Nine

The Back Nine is a documentary that answers the question: can an amateur golfer play professional golf after turning 40? Armed with the best mental, fitness, and golf coaches out there, The Back Nine details an enthralling journey that dares to ask “what is possible?”

Jon Fitzgerald takes on the challenge while also taking on his "back nine" of life. The journey takes you through his mental and physical challenges, an excursion to St. Andrews, and a close look at how Jon cuts 11 strokes off of his handicap while maintaining his family life. The Back Nine is an insightful look into one of the more unorthodox roads to professional golf.

Available to rent or buy on: Amazon Prime, YouTube, Google Play, Apple TV, Vudu

The Short Game

The Short Game examines the world of youth golf. The film follows a group of 7-8-year-old golfers as they compete in the 2012 U.S. Kids Golf World Championship. You get to know eight different junior golfers and follow them from their hometown and family life all the way through the World Championship.

In addition to golfers from the U.S., the film features kids from South Africa, China, France, and the Philippines. The Short Game is a great watch for any golf enthusiast, but especially for parents with junior golfers. The documentary was produced by celebrity golf ambassador Justin Timberlake and his wife Jessica Biel.

Available to stream, buy or rent on: Netflix, Amazon Prime, YouTube, Vudu, Google Play

Seve the Movie

Seve the Movie tracks Severiano Ballesteros' remarkable journey to professional golf. As the son of a farm laborer, Seve turned professional at age 16. Any golf lover can admire the trail blazed by Seve, and the amazing skill he brought to golf, including over 85 wins and five major championships.

Seve the Movie is an inside look at not only his life, but what it takes to be successful at the highest level. This documentary is eye-opening for younger generations while those who admired Seve as a player will find it touching and nostalgic.

Available to stream, buy or rent on: The Roku Channel, Tubi, Amazon Prime, Google Play, YouTube, Vudu

Uneven Fairways: The Story of the Negro Leagues of Golf

Narrated by Samuel L. Jackson, this documentary looks at the African Americans who played at the highest level when they were barred from the PGA. Instead, these golfers were a part of the United Golf Association, known as the “Negro Leagues” of golf.

First appearing on the Golf Channel in 2009, this documentary still holds up as one of the best nearly 15 years later. Based on the book Uneven Fairways by Pete McDaniel, and Forbidden Fairways, by Dr. Calvin Sinnette, the documentary features historical greats such as Calvin Peete, Charlie Sifford, and Jim Thorpe.

Available to stream on: YouTube

Loopers: The Caddie’s Long Walk

Loopers: The Caddie's Long Walk illustrates the history of golf’s most overlooked participant in golf: caddies. Beginning with their history in Scotland and ending with the caddies of the PGA Tour, this film gives a broad overview of many of the unseen facets of golf.

Non-golf fans looking for something to watch might find this deep dive into the caddie world to be a bit much, but fans of the game will walk away with a deeper appreciation for the profession. Narrated by America's favorite Hollywood golf nut, Bill Murray, Looper: The Caddie's Long Walk shines a bright light on player-caddie relationships and what it takes to loop for the biggest names in the game.

Available to stream, rent or buy on: Amazon Prime, The Roku Channel, Vudu, Tubi, Google Play, YouTube, Apple TV

The Founders

The 2016 film The Founders chronicles the lives of the 13 women who founded the LPGA during the 1940s. Despite enormous backlash, these women fought back against the sexism of the day in order to raise the profile of women’s golf.

The Founders artfully tells the great and often-overlooked story with interviews and archival footage. The documentary does an excellent job of taking the viewer back in time, long before women's golf grew into what we see today at the Solheim Cup and other high-profile ladies golf events. Some of the LPGA's all-time greats like Babe Zaharias, Louise Suggs, Patty Berg, and many more are chronicled in this film which was funded by LPGA Hall of Famers, Karrie Webb and Annika Sorenstam.

Available to stream, rent or buy on: The Roku Channel, Tubi, Amazon Prime, Google Play, YouTube, Vudu

Tee Shot: Ariya Jutanugarn

Ever wonder what it's like growing up as a child prodigy in a pressure-packed sport? Tee Shot: Ariya Jutanugarn, is a biopic that depicts LPGA Tour standout Ariya Jutanugarn and her path to the top of women's professional golf. 

Using Jutanugarn's immense golf success as an example, Tee Shot highlights many key struggles that children with parents who are committed to their success experience. At times these struggles can be difficult to watch, but the commitment from both parent and child is admirable.

Available to stream on: Netflix

Tiger Woods: Return of the Roar

If you can't get enough of Tiger Woods, the Tiger Woods: Return of the Roar is for you. The documentary debuted on ESPN in 2018 and covers the incredible 2017-2018 year on tour for the GOAT. From uncertainty revolving around injuries to his unforgettable victory at the 2018 Tour Championship, Return of the Roar is a gradual climb to the top of the mountain where Woods ultimately replants his flag.

Narrated by ESPN's Scott Van Pelt, this documentary gives you an inside-the-ropes look at all that occurred during that stretch of time with supporting couch interviews of Woods adding insight in a way only the man himself can.

Available to stream on: ESPN+

About the Author

Todd Mrowice is a Staff Writer for GolfLink. He has been writing about golf for over 10 years including a long tenure at GOLFChicago Magazine. Todd has covered all aspects of the game including travel, products, business, and professional tours.