“The Short Game” is director Josh Greenbaum’s debut feature film, a documentary that follows eight youngsters as they train for, then compete in, the 2012 US Kids Golf World Championship in Pinehurst, N.C. All are either 7 or 8. Five are boys. Four are from the United States.
What Greenbaum captures is compelling, and occasionally uncomfortable to watch. Sports in their purest form are played by children, who are – most of the time – much too young to be tarnished by the athletic stain of jealousy, scandal, sacrifice, and unfair expectations.
Not so on the elite youth golf circuit, thanks to the parents who get more worked up over birdies and bogeys than their proteges-in-training. Full story for BostonGlobe.com subscribers.