Leslie Nielsen’s Bad Golf My Way (1994) — Go golf or go home

“They don’t call him the ‘Prairie Piranha’ for nothing.”

Justin’s rating: I kind of wish he did this for every sport

Justin’s review: I guess that Leslie Nielsen’s 1993 golf instructional video spoof was a real solid monkey-maker, because a sequel of sorts was fast-tracked for a year later. Once again, Director Rick Friedberg (Spy Hard, Van Halen’s “Hot for Teacher,” Playboy’s Sensual Pleasures of Oriental Massage, and no I didn’t make up any of that) returned to film Nielsen being over-the-top silly at the game of golf.

However, there’s a bit more structure to Bad Golf My Way. Rather than being a loose series of instructional vignettes, this follows a grudge match between Leslie and Brad (Don Allison), a complete jerk — and club champion — who needs to be put in his place. And who best to do that than a guy who literally authored a guide to cheating, annoying, and blustering his way to victory?

Yes, it’s pretty much the exact same plot to the film Happy Gilmore, just with a smaller budget for musical license and less Bob Barker.

Despite his greater skills, cocky Brad gradually finds himself in over his head with the machinations of this prankster. Leslie tortures him both psychologically and physically, outsmarting him. Some of the bits are genuinely funny — such as conducting numerous “takes” of filming Brad practice swinging — while others go on for far too long without much in the way of chuckles.

I will admit that I was startled into laughing at seeing a bunch of white masks with the sign DANGER: MIME FIELD and then one explodes. And there was the clown parade and the killer mongoose. I don’t know where these guys are golfing, but it looks pretty fun.

Leslie Nielsen had a great talent for spitting out truly ludicrous dialogue with utter sincerity, which of course makes it hilarious. So when he’s stringing together nonsense phrases or playing off against sight gags, this is a really enjoyable romp. But there’s an uneven quality to the humor here. Some of the scenes make me think that they were fishing around for an idea of a joke but didn’t really have anything prepared in advance.

Uneven or not, Bad Golf My Way is a must-see for fans of Naked Gun, Airplane, and other classic Nielsen outings. And it allows those of us allergic to golf the opportunity to vicariously play 18 insane holes.


  • Leslie’s look at the camera when “bad golfers can be good golfers” is mentioned
  • This is a complicated gambling rundown
  • The caddy speed-cutting a tree down into a horsie
  • The American Gothic couple
  • Musical clowns
  • Good golfers can hear insects moving
  • “And that thought is… don’t think.”
  • Leslie’s director getup
  • The caddy moving the “hole”
  • Ticks can carry leprosy
  • What is the sound of one mind snapping?
  • A fish in one!

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