Gambling and movies have always made a good combination. There are tons of movies that have gambling in them and there are even some casino games popularized by movies. Gambling also makes a good basis for a movie and there are plenty of films that have been made about gambling. Here are 10 of the top movies about gambling:
The Top Ten Movies About Gambling
- Casino (1995): Casino is set in the Las Vegas of the 1970’s and 80’s and was directed by Martin Scorsese. It stars Robert De Niro, Sharon Stone and Joes Pesci. Sam Rothstein, better known as Ace (De Niro) is tasked by his mafia bosses to manage a casino in Las Vegas. While Ace runs the casino, his friend Nicky Santoro, keeps people in line, sometimes a little too enthusiastically. Casino has everything you would expect in a movie about mob owned casinos: money, gambling, glamour and violence. This is definitely one of the best casino movies out there.
- Rounders (1998): Rounders starts Matt Damon as Mike McDermott, a young poker player who intends to pay his way through law school with his winnings. However, in the space of 5 minutes he loses entire savings of $30,000 to Russian mobster Teddy “KGB” (John Malkovich). Mike swears off cards forever to concentrate on law school, but is eventually drawn back in by a childhood friend fresh out of prison. His friend, Worm, pushes Mike back into gambling to help him repay a debt. Poker players will love this movie.
- Casino Royale (2006): James Bond and casinos are the perfect match. In Casino Royale, MI6 has received information that Le Chiffe, a financier of terrorist organizations intends to use high stakes poker to raise money for terrorist activities. They call on Bond (Daniel Craig) to beat Le Chiffe at the poker table. Being James Bond, he is up to the task and uses his poker abilities and other skills to get the job done. One of the better Bond movies, and definitely preferred by poker players.
- High Roller: The Ungar Story (2003): This is a biographical film about Stu Ungar, the first player to win 3 WSOP Main Event tournaments. He rose to the top of the gambling world through his success at poker, and turned around and lost it all betting on horse racing.
- Maverick (1994): Maverick starring Mel Gibson as Bret Maverick and is based on the old television series of the same name. Maverick is a con artist and gambler who is trying to put together $25,000 to enter a big winner-take-all card tournament. As he attempts to raise the funds he encounters some difficulties along the way. After finally getting his stake together he makes it to the game just in time to take his seat and try for the half-million dollar pot. During the game he must deal with different obstacles until he makes it to the final round.
- The Hustler (1961): The Hustler stars Paul Newman as Eddie Felson. Eddie hustles pool for a living. That is he loses intentionally to lure opponents into raising the stakes on pool matches. When the amount is right he ups his game. Although Eddie is small time he aspires to take on the legendary Minnesota Fats and eventually gets his wish.
- 21 (2008): 21 is based on the true story of the MIT Blackjack Team. Ben is a MIT student with aspirations of attending Harvard medical school but he lacks the $300,000 needed to complete his studies there. A professor convinces Ben to join a group of his other students and forms a Blackjack team. The plan is to go to Atlantic City and win millions from casinos using card counting techniques at the Blackjack tables. Things initially go well but their success attracts unwanted attention and things start to go downhill. It is a compelling story, in part because it is based on real life events.
- Lock, Stock and Two Smoking Barrels (1998): Lock, Stock and Two Smoking Barrels is a British movie starring Jason Statham and Vinnie Jones. The plot of the film involves 4 friends who decide to pool their money to beat a gangster named Hatchet Harry in a game of cards. Harry winds up taking all their money by cheating. Now the four friends must raise 500,000 pounds to pay off their gambling debt or one of the friends fathers will have his pub confiscated. To get the money they decide to rob some criminals who in turn have just robbed a marijuana farm. Things start to get out of hand and the friends have to scramble to avoid serious consequences. A great movie and well worth watching.
- The Cooler (2003): Bernie played by William Macy is a professional loser. When Bernie sits down at a table, people who were winning start to lose. As a recovering gambling addict he is working off a big debt owed to the casino boss (Alec Baldwin) by being the casinos cooler. His job is to sit in on games to break players “hot streaks”, which he accomplishes just by being there. However it may be possible to turn his luck around with the love of a cocktail waitress. The movie has an interesting premise and Macy is perfect for the role of cooler. The Cooler is worth a watch.
- The Cincinnati Kid (1965): The Cincinnati Kid is a classic gambling movie starring Steve McQueen. It is set in during the Great Depression and is about Eric Stoner, a young gambler who roams from town to town looking for high-stakes poker games. In order to prove himself the best he sets his sights on Lance Howard, the top stud-poker player. The game is set and only one man can win.
These 10 films are some of the best gambling movies made. They may even inspire you to head out to a casino. Better yet go to NoDepositz and play at one of the online casinos listed there while you stay at home and watch another movie about gambling.