The roll of the dice, the spin of the roulette wheel, the wry expression as the cards are dealt; the act of gambling is awash with dramatic moments and emotional crescendos.
No wonder then that movie producers and screenwriters since the dawn of film have clamoured to depict these amazing moments in their films; nothing oozes suspense than an activity overflowing with risk, after all! So which great movie casino scenes stand out in the stakes?
Goodfellas – Shot in the Foot
Joe Pesci’s Tommy DeVito was one of the most tense, lively characters in this film, and the moment when he shoots the rather timid Spider in the foot during a card game is a electrifying moment. Not for Spider, we might add!
Ocean’s Eleven – Poker Scene
Brad Pitt’s character trying to teach a bunch of actors to play poker is a hilarious scene, exposing deftly the tedium every pro has experienced in trying to teach the game to a group of rookies. “All reds!”
Lock, Stock & Two Smoking Barrels – Three Card Brag
This excellent scene, in which Fast Eddy (Nick Moran) and Hatchet Harry (P.H. Moriarty) continually ramp up their stakes is one of the best in the movie. £20,000 turns to £30,000 which is raised to £50,000, £80,000, £100,000; and just when you think the tension is high enough; £250,000! These high sums, along with the fact Eddy is loaning the money from Harry, makes this a true great!
Toy Story 3 – Roulette
A See ‘N Say has never been used in this way before! With the much loved game of roulette transported into the digital realm, Hollywood has finally caught up with online gaming sites; perhaps we’ll be seeing some Toy Story-themed slots in the future?
Austin Powers – Poker Scene
In a scene that pedants will note is rife with inaccuracy, Powers faces off against Number Two in a hilarious game of wits which paints a pure picture of the thinking experienced by gamblers; living dangerously!
Run Lola Run – 20 Black
Hedging all of your hopes on a bet that’s odds are 1296-to-1 is pretty silly, but I guess in Hollywood the limitations of reality get thrown out of the window! Of course, it’s easy to get sucked into the idea of a small bet on long odds for that big win which is why the rise of online casino players has been spurred by bonus deals making that big “win” more possible. A quick search will discover lots of current deals including over 400 deposit bonus opportunities at bigscreensot.com.
Rounders – Mike vs. Teddy KGB
Unlike some of the more outlandish choices of ours, Rounders paints a frank and uncompromising portrayal of the New York underground gambling scene. Best bit? When Mike faces off Teddy KGB using ten grand’s worth of borrowed money!
Rain Man- Blackjack
Yes the movie is both derided and loved in equal proportions, but there are some great moments in this film that all critics agree on, including the scene where the two embark on their card counting spree, slick quits and haircuts akimbo.
Casino Royale – Poker Hand
Such a spree of excellent hands has likely never been seen before in a gambling scene, but despite inaccuracies, this scene is shot perfectly; tense and exciting! Casino Royale is also one of the best James Bond films ever!