Watching film itself is a gamble. Every time you purchase a cinema ticket or queue up a movie on Netflix, you’re taking a risk. Is it worth the $13 investment? Is it really worth the two hours it takes to get there? A movie selection involves some risk, but we could minimise it by consulting a list of the finest films in a certain genre, for example.
If you’re a fan of the gambling genre, check out these timeless masterpieces before you register and play.
Uncut Gems (2020)
Betting has never seemed more hopeless than in the Safdie Brothers’ gripping comedy about a jeweller (Adam Sandler), the mafia, and Kevin Garnett. Sandler’s down-on-his-luck and out-of-options plunger, New York City becomes a frantic monster of bookmakers, sadsacks, and loudness.
Wake in Fright (1971)
Few people realise that Wake in Fright is one of the finest gambling movies ever. Let’s break it down: Gary Bond is a blonde, tan, sweat-drenched Australian schoolteacher. Finally, he finds himself in a little village with no running water or beer, where everyone is sexist to the level of Stepford Wives. When he loses all of his money, things only become worse. If the title doesn’t give it away, things move from bad to worse to scary.
Consider that Maverick was nominated for an Academy Award in 1994 if you don’t believe it is a fine parody. When Mel Gibson gives himself fully to a comedy role, it’s easy to forget how funny it can be when a performer really believes in the content they’re portraying.
Hard Eight (1996)
Phillip Baker Hall, John C. Reilly, Samuel L. Jackson and Paul Thomas Anderson are a Royal Flush at the poker table. Anderson’s first feature-length film, about an experienced card player and a lonely orphan, is a fascinating depiction of the guys who spend their lives in Las Vegas.
Vegas Vacation (1997)
Even though it is, by a wide margin, the worst of the Vacation films, Vegas Vacation does include a few enjoyable casino sequences. For example, Chevy Chase goes to a budget casino and plays a game called “Guess a Number Between 1 and 10″ in a funny sequence. ‘4” is his best estimation. “7” is the dealer’s answer. It’s an excellent example of how casinos try to exploit unwary patrons.
Casino Royale (2006)
The Baccarat scene in Dr No is one of the best. In Diamonds Are Forever, Sean Connery charms the craps table. When it comes to James Bond films, Casino Royale is a must-see since it involves a poker match between Bond and Le Chiffre (the film’s villain).
The Gambler (1974)
If you can believe it, The Gambler truly happened. It’s possible that James Toback wrote the script based on his gambling practices, which may explain why he’s been accused of so many crimes. He has a harsh, misogynistic, and gambling-addicted personality. However, it’s a risk worth taking to turn it into a film.
Lock, Stock and Two Smoking Barrels (1998)
There’s no better example than Lock, Stock, and Two Smoking Barrels about creepy poker movies. Who knew pocket 6s could be so deadly?
The Cooler (2003)
How realistic is The Cooler? William H. Macy portrays a loser who is so proficient at losing that a casino raises him to sit at a craps table and wreck everyone’s luck. It’s goofy, silly, and devoid of any sense of reality. He also had sexual relations with Maria Bello.
Mississippi Grind (2015)
California Split is a two-hander tribute to Altman’s Holy Grail of gambling films but somehow ups the ante. How? There are only two words to describe this man: Ryan Reynolds.