The Golf Specialist

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The Golf Specialist
Directed by Monte Brice
Produced by Lou Brock
Written by W. C. Fields
Starring W. C. Fields
Allan Bennett
William Black
Naomi Casey
John Dunsmuir
Shirley Grey
Johnny Kane
Al Wood
Cinematography Frank Zucker
Edited by Russell G. Shields
Distributed by RKO Pictures
Release date
  • August 22, 1930 (1930-08-22)
Running time
20 min.
Country United States
Language English

The Golf Specialist is a 1930 comedy short subject from RKO Pictures, starring W. C. Fields. It was his first talkie. The film was shot in Fort Lee, New Jersey when many early film studios in America's first motion picture industry were based there in the early part of the 20th century.[1][2][3]

The film features lines such as "I would never hit a woman, not even my own mother" and "Stand clear and keep your eye on the ball", a line Fields also used in the golf scene in The Dentist (1932). Fields reprised the entire golf scene in You're Telling Me! (1934).


J. Effingham Bellwether (W. C. Fields) is a guest in a hotel, where he meets the House Detective's wife (Shirley Grey) who likes to flirt with other men. After brief encounters with a little girl (Naomi Casey) and the House Detective (John Dunsmuir), Bellwether offers to teach the Detective's Wife how to play golf.

The two of them and their Caddy (Allen Wood) go out to the golf course, but Bellwether never gets to hit the ball; his lessons are being constantly interrupted by such distractions as the Caddy's squeaking shoes, pieces of paper being blown by the wind into his path, accidentally stepping into a pie that the Caddy had brought, et cetera.

At the end, the police and the House Detective come out to the course to arrest con artist Bellwether for a list of absurd crimes (such as "Eating spaghetti in public" and "Teaching the facts of life to an Indian"); the police put handcuffs on him just as he's showing the Detective's Wife the importance of keeping the wrists close together while gripping the club.


  • The Golf Specialist is one of three W. C. Fields short films that fell into the public domain after the copyright lapsed in the 1960s (the other two being The Dentist and The Fatal Glass of Beer). As such, these three films frequently appear on inexpensive video or DVD compilations.[4]


  1. ^ Koszarski, Richard (2004), Fort Lee: The Film Town, Rome, Italy: John Libbey Publishing -CIC srl, ISBN 0-86196-653-8 
  2. ^ "Studios and Films". Fort Lee Film Commission. Retrieved 2011-05-30. 
  3. ^ Fort Lee Film Commission (2006), Fort Lee Birthplace of the Motion Picture Industry, Arcadia Publishing, ISBN 0-7385-4501-5 
  4. ^ DVD writeup

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