The Voice’s Message To Ray In Field Of Dreams Explained

Ray Kinsella hears many different messages from a disembodied voice throughout 1989’s Field Of Dreams, but one in particular has a special meaning. Based on the novel Shoeless Joe by W. P. Kinsella, Field Of Dreams follows Iowa farmer Ray Kinsella, who literally bets the farm when he is seemingly compelled by spirits to build a baseball field in the middle of his cornfield. True to the message that Ray hears promising “if you build it, he will come,” the spirits of several famous baseball players eventually appear to play night games at Ray’s field.


The messages don’t stop after Ray builds his baseball field, however. While at a baseball game at Fenway Park with author Terence Mann, Ray and Terence hear a message from the voice saying “go the distance.” While all the messages that Ray hears in Field Of Dreams are important, the voice telling him and Terence to “go the distance” is especially meaningful. What’s more, it reveals a deeper meaning to the movie and its characters’ journeys.

Related: The Real-Life Field of Dreams: Location & History Explained

Field Of Dreams’ “Go The Distance” Line Encourages Ray To Carry Out His Mission

field of dreams go the distance

Field of Dreams’ “go the distance” line is ultimately what drives the rest of Field Of Dreams’ plot. Ray and Terence both hear the message and see Fenway Park’s scoreboard replaced with Archibald “Moonlight” Graham’s name and location in Minnesota. In this sense, “go the distance” is meant to encourage Ray and Terence to seek out Moonlight, one of Field of Dreams’ famous baseball players, to play at Ray’s field. However, this is not the only purpose of the message. In addition to pushing Ray and Terence to find Moonlight, “go the distance” also encourages Ray to continue pursuing his mission and not give up.

The Deeper Message Behind Field Of Dreams’ “Go The Distance” Quote

Kevin Costner getting ready to pitch in Field of Dreams

On the surface, the voice’s message to “go the distance” refers to traveling to Minnesota to find Moonlight Graham, but the message in Field Of Dreams actually goes a lot deeper than that. Go the distance” really means to see something through, even if it calls for them to go outside of their comfort zone or face great adversity. This applies to several of Field Of Dreams’ characters, particularly Ray and Terence. For Ray, “go the distance” is about sticking with the baseball field so he could get much-needed closure with his father. With Terence, it meant trusting Ray even though he seemed crazy, and doing so helped him regain his love of life.

The deeper meaning of “go the distance” can be seen clearly when considering the person initially attached to it, Moonlight Graham. Despite his unrealized major league baseball dreams, Moonlight refuses to leave Minnesota to go with Ray at first. Eventually, Moonlight’s younger self goes to Iowa, where he gets to play with other famous baseball players. By leaving the comfort of his familiar life, Moonlight was able to achieve both of his life’s dreams, playing baseball and being a doctor. Following the advice to “go the distance” not only brought Moonlight, Ray, and Terence peace, but also allowed the baseball field to become a haven of peace for others in Field of Dreams’ ending.

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