The Story of Rannulph Junuh

Rannulph Junuh is a character played by Matt Damon in the 2000 fantasy/sport movie The Legend of Bagger Vance directed by Robert Redford, and based on the novel by Steven Pressfield.

The film is about once-promising golfer Rannulph Junuh, whose life and career were derailed by WWI. Junuh is traumatized when serving as a captain in the US Arm his company is wiped out in battle. He earns the Medal of Honor, but starts to live life as a drunk on his return to Georgia.

When Rannulph is brought in to play alongside the greatest golfers of his era, his game is weak. That’s until Bagger Vance (Will Smith), a mysterious traveler and a truly enigmatic golfer offers to coach him. Bagger Vance and says he will be his caddy.

Thanks to Vance, Junuh rediscovers his “authentic swing”. Adele Invergordon, who was Junuh’s girlfriend prior to him going to war, is very happy for him. Their romance is rekindling. Junuh’s main and final match in the movie ends in a three-way tie.

A lot of people ask – was Rannulph Junuh a real golfer? Unfortunately, he wasn’t. He is a fictional character and an amalgamation of a few southern golfers that were WW1 veterans. Steven Pressfield uses golf as a metaphor for one’s spiritual and philosophical journeys in his novel.

However, Rannulph Junuh is very “real” in the hearts of golfers. Many people would like to believe that one of the better sons of Savannah, Georgia was real.

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