Many films out there portray the everyday struggles of gambling. Some of them show the ups, while others focus on the difficult parts of this hobby. Certainly, all of these movies are remarkable works of art.
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“Casino Royale” (2006)
Most certainly one of the very best Bond movies ever. Daniel Craig’s first 007 appearance made him a legend! Everytime there is a change in the main Bond protagonist we are all a bit nervous and we are thinking: ‘no he cannot do better than so and so before him’. Daniel killed it!
The beautiful set up of captivating beaches of Bahamas, scenes in romantic Italy and of course the main casino set up in Prague’s Barrandov Studios were unbeatable and gave the movie a real high class vibe.
Plot was great, full of action and almost unexpected twists.
Shortly, 007 saves the world after winning a game of no-limit poker, seduces pretty ladies and falls in love with Vesper, who betrays him.
Favorite line: ‘ You’re not my type. Smart? Single.’
If you, for some reason have not seen it, make sure to put it on your must watch casino themed movies!
This film stands out for its unique blend of inner narratives, echoing the style of neo-noir and detective genres. Crafted by screenwriter Paul Mayersburg and directed by Mike Hodges, “Croupier” delves into the complexities of casino life, peppered with authentic gambling jargon. Set in a British casino, the film’s aesthetic and clever writing contribute to its allure.
Clive Owen delivers a standout performance, exploring the nuanced facets of human nature. His character, Jack Manfred, emerges as a profoundly intriguing figure in gambling cinema. The story transcends a mere plotline, evolving into a profound study of its central character, making “Croupier” an exceptional piece in the genre.
“Hard Eight” (1996)
Paul Thomas Anderson’s “Hard Eight” could easily top the list of underappreciated gambling movies. It features an impressive cast, including Phillip Baker Hall, John C. Reilly, Gwyneth Paltrow, Samuel L. Jackson, and Phillip Seymour Hoffman. Each actor contributes significantly to the film’s expansive narrative, with Hoffman’s brief appearance nearly overshadowing the entire film.
The storyline revolves around Hall’s character, Sydney, as he mentors Reilly’s John in the art of professional gambling in Las Vegas. The plot thickens into a thrilling crime drama as John and waitress Clementine (Paltrow), find themselves embroiled in a precarious situation, threatening their freedom.
“The Hustler” (1961)
Directed by Robert Rossen and starring Paul Newman as “Fast Eddie” Felson, “The Hustler” is a seminal piece in gambling filmography, inspiring later works like “The Color of Money”. This classic not only garnered critical acclaim but also secured a place in the National Film Registry for its cultural, historical, and aesthetic significance.
With two Academy Awards to its name, the film chronicles Fast Eddie’s ambition to challenge the seasoned “Minnesota Fats”, played by George C. Scott. Newman and Scott’s performances elevate this sports drama to exceptional heights, contributing to its widespread acclaim.
Directed by the illustrious Martin Scorsese, “Casino” is akin to a grand gambling saga, reminiscent of the expansive narratives in classic westerns. Starring Robert De Niro as the formidable head of the eponymous casino, the film stands out as one of Scorsese’s most ambitious projects.
Although it shares thematic similarities with Scorsese’s other Mafia-centred films like “Mean Streets” and “Goodfellas”, “Casino” carved its own unique niche. The performances, especially by Joe Pesci and Sharon Stone (who earned an Academy Award nomination and a Golden Globe win), are exceptional, solidifying “Casino” as one of Scorsese’s masterpieces.
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