Gambling is an activity that has always attracted people’s attention. At the same time, many screenwriters and directors constantly search for themes for their films that can encourage viewers to look at their works and keep them in front of the screen. So it’s not surprising that many films are related to gambling.
Some films are entirely devoted to this theme, while others are more indirect through certain iconic scenes. The best are titles worth checking out, even if gambling doesn’t appeal to you. We spent a lot of time analyzing the titles in this category, and made a list that includes movies from different genres. So, here’s our list, which we hope will help you choose what to watch tonight . . .
Even though it was released back in 1998, Rounders is still one of the most fascinating gambling movies ever. We have at least two actors you know in this title – Matt Damon and Edward Norton.
The plot involves a student (Damon) discovering his poker talent. After several successful tournaments, he plays against a Russian mobster and loses almost all of his money. This is when he decides to quit. Unfortunately, his best friend (Norton) gets out of jail at the same time and has a significant debt to pay off. So, Damon decides to help him by playing poker until he eventually meets the Russian mobster again. Overall, it’s a movie with a great story and great acting and a memorable gambling/poker theme.
Casino Royale (2006)
This is one of the rare examples where the remake outperforms its predecessor. Casino Royale with Daniel Craig, released in 2006, is a remake of the 1967 version starring David Niven – which was more of a parody than a strict adaptation of Ian Fleming’s spy novel. Here we have another James Bond movie in which the main protagonist gives his best effort to protect the world.
His primary opponent is Le Chiffre, a banker for criminal enterprises, this time. Here you will get a chance to watch a classic James Bond movie with stunning scenes. As for gambling, the final and most crucial scene takes place in a casino in Monte Carlo, where the world’s most famous fictional secret agent plays poker against the bad guys.
The Bingo Long Traveling All-Stars & Motor Kings (1976)
This movie might not be as popular as the others on this list, but it has a few surprises that make it worth watching. Its story focuses on a team of African American baseball players who decide to leave their League and showcase their talent with the help of an independent traveling baseball team. It’s a movie about racial segregation mixed with sports and comedy.
Of course, there’s also a gambling part; this time, it’s about bingo as there’s a memorable scene in which team members play bingo during their journey. Bingo is among the most-played games at many online casinos and specialized sites, including UK bingo sites not on Gamstop. This is not a surprise, considering that playing bingo online is a simple and potentially profitable way to have fun.
Molly’s Game (2017)
If you are into movies based on true stories, you may want to try watching Molly’s Game. This title focuses on Molly Bloom, a successful skier who meets the Winter Olympic Games qualifications. However, she then suffers an injury that ends her career. After moving to Los Angeles, she unexpectedly became an organizer of illegal poker tournaments designed for celebrities and wealthy people.
Director (and writer) Aaron Sorkin does an excellent job with this biography/crime movie. The same goes for the main stars – Jessica Chastain, Idris Elba, and Kevin Costner. The film also talks about people’s attitudes towards gambling culture and the prestige of this activity.
Hard Eight (1996)
For the fans of neo-noir movies, we can suggest Hard Eight. Released in 1996, this crime drama, directed by Paul Thomas Anderson, brings us a story about an experienced and somewhat mysterious gambler named Sydney. Philip Baker Hall is in the role of Sydney and is determined to help young John become a professional gambler. Interestingly, John is played by John C. Reilly, who we all know from comedy movies.
As the story progresses, we learn that Sydney doesn’t teach John purely out of altruistic motives. There’s something deeper that makes him do that. Overall, you can expect a lovely film with a few twists putting a few moral dilemmas in front of viewers.
When we talk about gambling movies we usually expect stories from the player’s perspective, or sometimes from the side of the house. In Croupier, as the title suggests, we see how professional casino croupiers experience all that atmosphere.
This 1998 film is one of the titles that made British actor Clive Owen famous. He plays Jack Manfred, a croupier who witnesses the cold world of gambling every day. Interestingly, Manfred accepts the job only to help himself write the novel he has planned for a long time because he is a writer. At first, it goes well for him because he’s meeting colleagues and players, but things take a turn for the worse after a robbery occurs at the casino.