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6 OF THE BEST CASINO MOVIES

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You love casinos, right? If you do, then Hollywood has been giving you a few lessons in gambling through different casino movies. Let’s look at the six most popular casino movies ever created in the entertainment industry globally.  Here’s a list of them below in the order they were released.

  1. Casino Royale (1967)
  2. Casino (1995)
  3. Rounders (1998)
  4. 21  (2008)
  5. The Hangover (2009)
  6. The Gambler (2014)

Casino Royale (1967)

Casino Royale (1967) is a wack-up retirement movie that stars David Niven as the secret service agent, James Bond 007. The movie begins with James Bond (Niven) retired and enjoying a free life doing whatever he wants. M (Bernard Lee) tries to call him for help and does not answer, but his daughter shows up and tells her that Daddy is on vacation. Then she throws away all of his gadgets into the bins. The next day, M (Lee) meets with Bond’s daughter and asks her to convince her father to come back.

He returns to London, and M (Lee) informs him about SMERSH. The organisation who are targeting British secret agents-whether they are living or dead. At this point, they show a bunch of clips from other James Bond movies to explain how SMERSH has been destroyed and has resurfaced again-all while M’s (Lee) daughter is dealing with the pokies Australia at her private school. While at lunch with his daughter, he meets Felix Lieter (Peter Sellers), who explains what is going on with SMERSH. Bond finds out that Leiter had lost his arm fighting evil and is now a desk jockey at MI6.

Bond goes back to Baccarat tables of Montenegro Casino Royale Australia. He finds out that after losing money, Le Chiffre (Orson Welles) will sell important British government documents to the Russians. M’s daughter is kidnapped by SMERSH when trying to rescue Bond, so he has to team up with Le Chiffre to get her back.

This movie is a parody of James Bond and does not have the same appeal as other Bond movies.

Casino (1995)

Casino is a movie full of gambling-related content. This film adaptation of the nonfiction book Casino: Love and Honour in Las Vegas. Written by Nicholas Pileggi was directed by Martin Scorsese with production from Barbara De Fina in 1995. The stars include Robert De Niro as Sam “Ace” Rothstein, a Jewish American expert gambler who manages the Tangiers Casino successfully until problems arise. Nicky Santoro (Joe Pesci), his drug-addicted wife Ginger (Sharon Stone), con artist Lester Diamond (James Woods), and several corrupt politicians put Ace at risk continuously. This 1995 movie depicts behind-the-scenes mobsters, casino owners, difficulties that come with running a casino, and more.

The gambling movie is set in the 1970s, so the movie mainly centres around gambling games with cards or dice instead of video slots or online pokies. Many incidents throughout Casino involve cheating or rigging most of these games for one’s own benefit. Sometimes it is obvious that one party will lose at first sight, but the cheating allows them to win at the end ultimately. Viewers might not be familiar with all of these games or what is involved in each incident. Still, it is generally easy enough to understand that someone is trying their luck and possibly getting away with something they really shouldn’t.

Rounders (1998)

Have you been looking for a great casino themed movie? Well, I have good news for you. Rounders is a 1998 American drama movie starring Matt Damon as Mike McDermott and Edward Norton as Lester “Worm” Murphy. The writers’ Brian Koppelman and David Levien centre this movie’s storyline around two friends, an overly confident gambler who loses his entire bankroll of $30,000 in one high stakes poker game hand and vows to his girlfriend to give up gambling but ends up going back on his word when he helps out a friend who has gone deep into debt with casinos. This may be just what you’re looking for! 

21 (2008)

A math teacher and a need for money led to the 2008 American heist drama film, 21.  This is one of the best Casino movies ever to grace the big screens. This movie centres around a group of intelligent MIT students, a math teacher, and a need for money. In this 2008 American heist drama film, you witness the movie adaptation of the true events of the MIT Blackjack Team. The movie comes to life with director Rober Luketic and writers Allan Loeb and Peter Steinfeld. The lead character Ben Campbell is Jim Sturgess, a brilliant student at MIT. He meets unorthodox professor Mickey Rosa in an unconventional way during his time at school there, trying to study medicine at Harvard University but cannot pay his college tuition bills even though he works extremely hard.

After hearing his plight, Mickey persuades him to join his Blackjack team and show what he is made of. Mickey teaches Ben and other students on the team how to count cards. They can then become blackjack players who will not only win at the casino table but also beat it by hacking into its system and stealing it. Ben becomes good at the game and strikes a deal with Micky to win $300,000 over an 18 night period of hitting casinos in Las Vegas after being expelled from Harvard for plagiarism. However, when they get there, they realise how hard this job really is because of the presence of surveillance cameras watching their every move.

The Hangover (2009)

Have you ever felt the need to travel to Vegas, just for a little while?  Maybe it’s because of all the casino movies that have been made about it. The Hangover is one of those movies. Most people enjoy watching this movie because it has everything they are looking for in a casino themed film! Partying, gambling, and more partying! It’s also got some other elements too like comedy and drama. Director Todd Phillips does an amazing job of filming this movie with his team members Daniel Goldberg, Scott Moore & John Lucas, who wrote the screenplay along with him. This film was released back in 2009 but remains popular among many Casino Lovers today!

The film starts off with Alan (Zach Galifianakis), Phil (Bradley Cooper) and Stu (Ed Helms) sitting in a Chinese restaurant after Alan’s wedding. The three of them are hungover, and the night before was a very wild one for all of them. As they’re sitting there, they start talking about what happened the night before. Then we go back in time so we can see the events that took place. Phil, Stu and Alan had all gotten a little too drunk the night before, so they didn’t remember everything that took place. A lot happened, which they will have to piece together as they try to figure out what happened back at their hotel room. There’s a lot of “what happens in Vegas, stays in Vegas” in this hilarious comedy!

The Gambler (2014)

Casino players looking for a good casino-themed movie should take a look at the 2014 remake of The Gambler.

The film stars Mark Wahlberg as Jim Bennett, a gambling literature professor by day and a high-stakes gambler by night. He’s got two debts to pay off before he gets killed: one from his loan shark Neville Baraka and another $200,000 from Lee. Bennett needs to figure out how to get both debts paid in order to stay alive!

What separates this new Gambler from the 1974 original is that it’s not only a character study about an unstable gambling addict, but it’s also about what makes Bennett tick as he deals with his many problems. Can he come out on top?

If you’re interested in watching a casino themed movie, then this is the one for you!

Conclusion

Casino movies are typically not appreciated by everyone, but there’s no denying that they can be really captivating. If you’re looking for a gripping entertainment experience with behind-the-scenes mobsters and casino owners, this list could be the answer.