The Coolest Films about Casinos and Gambling Ever Produced

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What could possibly equal the sights, sounds, and feelings surrounding you in a casino, or the thrill of the gambler’s rush? Hundreds of films have been created about gambling, gamblers, casinos, and casino heists. The following list of cool casino and gambling films characteristics some of the most thrilling, bizarre, funny, and thrilling casino and gambling scenes of all time.

And some of these films even take spot outdoors of Sin City.

Ocean’s 11 (1960, 2001)

Absolutely everyone knows about the 2001 version of Ocean’s 11, exactly where a suave Clooney gathers a group of misfits to rob a bunch of casinos on the Las Vegas Strip. In the ultimate Rage Against the Slot ocean 11Machine film, Danny Ocean and his group of crooks handle to pull off the casino heist of the century, and celebrate with a final musical montage in front of the Bellagio’s renowned dancing fountain.

The only point with extra metric tons of cool than that is the original Ocean’s 11—with the Rat Pack. In addition to Sammy, Frank, and Dean, the extended Rat Pack incorporates Joey Bishop, and Peter Lawford. In the original film, the 11 have been Planet War two vets who get with each other to rob numerous Las Vegas Strip casinos in a single evening.

Though the 2001 version characteristics a scintillating musical score, nothing at all beats the casino cool of the Rat Pack crooning in dark Vegas lounges. And when Sammy sings ‘Yo-leven’ in a parking lot, you know you are in for smooth 60s ride in a cool lounge machine…with tail fins.

Bugsy (1991)

Bugsy is a film primarily based on the actual-life story of Bugsy Siegel, the New York gangster who helped kick start off the Las Vegas Strip. There have been casinos in and about Vegas at the time, but they have been bugsymainly run-down, honky-tonk joints with wooden saloons and pony rides for the children. Bugsy brought the glitz and glamour to the desert casino scene.

For a film that is equal components history and entertainment, Bugsy chronicles the life of an East Coast gangster who wanted to strike out on his personal and create an empire—in the Nevada desert. As Bugsy builds his flagship Flamingo casino, he bargains with price range troubles, building misfires, rival gangs, and a significant temper that is unquestionably going to be the finish of him.

Rain Man (1988)

Who could overlook Rain Man, the film which swept the Oscars for the story of an autistic man (Raymorain mannd) who counted cards in Vegas? Guided by his scheming brother Charlie (Tom Cruise), the autistic character played by Dustin Hoffman steals the show—and a bunch of chips in Vegas. This film drew a huge quantity of interest to the topic of autism. And card counting.

Apparently, a single of the constructive side effects of Raymond’s variety of autism is the uncanny potential to automatically count objects like falling toothpicks and such. Counting cards into the thousands was a logical subsequent step. Angry more than the family members fortune becoming left to his autistic brother, Charlie decides to take Raymond’s show on the road—and cheat Vegas casinos with his card-counting secret weapon.

Rounders (1998)

Rounders is a single of these sleeper films that didn’t mroundersake significantly of a splash at the box workplace, however became a cult classic in the poker neighborhood. Matt Damon and Edward Norton play a pair of card sharks who take their show on the road to rook the rubes out of their bankrolls. As they make the rounds, these ‘rounders’ attract all the incorrect sorts of interest from all the incorrect sorts of individuals, all the although quoting actual-life poker legends like Doyle Brunson and Amarillo Slim.

Rounders is complete of precisely the type of shady characters you would picture haunting the illicit underworld of backroom poker matches. 1 such delightfully wicked character is Teddy ‘KGB,’ played by John Malkovich. This guy ticks all the suitable boxes of evil: he’s intimidating, he’s a card/loan shark, and he’s Russian mafia. His wickedly weird poker inform: pulling apart Oreo cookies and listening to them.

The Hangover (2009)

Some points that occur in Vegas should really unquestionably remain there, specifically when you can not clarify how you passed out at a stag celebration and woke up with somebody else’s infant in your area. Rather than ditching the brat and undertaking a runner on the hotel cthe hangoverasino bill (like any rational individual does in this scenario), the disoriented dudes choose to scour the streets of Vegas in search of answers.

Madcap hi-jinx ensues. Amongst the mysteries the hungover dudes will need to resolve: the infant in the wardrobe, the tiger and chicken in the area, and their missing pal, the bachelor. This is what occurs when you Viva Las Vegas just a tiny also significantly.

Casino Royale (2006)

The coolest casino film has ‘casino’ suitable in the title Casino Royale was each a remake of the initially James Bond film and a reboot for the 007 series. The film requires spot casino royalfor the duration of Bond’s early years, exactly where he has just earned his renowned license to kill from the British government. Naturally, the fledgling spy heads to the casino to celebrate.

Luckily, an international poor guy has arranged a higher stakes Texas Hold’em tournament in the Casino Royale in Montenegro. Bond slips into his very best tux and Aston Martin, and heads to the casino. Of course, the usual nest of spies haunts the casino, filling the screen with scenes of kidnapping, assassination, poisoning, and Bond attempting to save himself with a pen antidote and a automobile-lighter defibrillator.

Luckily, a beautiful Bond girl slinks more than in the nick of time to save the dying spy. But the most suave scene in the film is when Bond orders his signature Vesper Martini at the casino.

Leaving Las Vegas (1995)

“Did my wife leave me due to the fact I began drinking? Or did I start off drinking due to the fact my wife left me?” This is the burning query on the thoughts of Nicolas Cage’s loveable drunk character, who desires leaving las vegasto leave Las Vegas—by drinking himself to death. In a single of the darker tales of Las Vegas, Cage turns in an Oscar-winning efficiency as a man who just desires to leave the planet behind him in a blur of booze.

Naturally, the suicidal screenwriter Ben (Cage) meets the proverbial ‘hooker with a heart of gold’ (Elisabeth Shue), and they bond in booze and debauchery in Sin City. The only agreement in their partnership: she can not ask him to quit drinking, and he can not ask her to quit hooking. Though gambling is not at the forefront of the plot, Ben does swiftly unload some revenue at the tables, significantly to his satisfaction. Las Vegas serves as the great backdrop for this tragicomic tale of casino noir.

The darkness of the topic matter is punctuated with poignant moments of equally dark comedy: a scene in the shower exactly where Ben reaches for a vodka bottle as an alternative of shampoo, and a dinner scene exactly where he shouts “NURSE!” at his cocktail waitress.

The Cooler (2003)

What occurs when you are on a winning streak so hot you are about to empty the casino vaults? They send in the Cooler. Just as there are individuals who appear to be born fortunate, there are also individuals the coolerjpgborn beneath a gloomy cloud. Often these sad sacks get jobs as casino coolers.

The Cooler (William H. Macy) is an unlucky guy who operates for the casino. His brooding, hang-dog face, combined with a dark and gloomy persona, make Bernie (Macy) the great selection to function as the Cooler. When he arrives at a hot table, he just about quickly ‘cools’ the hot streak down to nothing at all, just by virtue of his gloomy presence. Just add Cupid’s arrow, a girl, and an angry casino mob boss stir completely.

Worry and Loathing in Las Vegas (1998)

What do you get when you cross the greatest novel ever written about Las Vegas with the crazy animator/director from Monty Python? You get Terry Gilliam’s ‘Fear and fear and loathing in las vegasLoathing in Las Vegas,’ primarily based on the book by Hunter S. Thompson. This is the epic story of the Gonzo journalist (Johnny Depp) and his psychotic lawyer (Benicio del Toro) on a savage journey by means of Las Vegas.

We have been someplace about Barstow on the edge of the desert when the drugs started to take hold. I recall saying some thing like “I really feel a bit lightheaded possibly you should really drive. . . .” And all of a sudden there was a terrible roar all about us and the sky was complete of what looked like enormous bats, all swooping and screeching and diving about the automobile, which was going about a hundred miles an hour with the top rated down to Las Vegas. – Hunter S. Thompson, Worry and Loathing in Las Vegas

The opening line of the book grabs you by the neck and under no circumstances lets you go. Dr. Gonzo’s words translate beautifully to the silver screen, displaying us precisely the type of points that should really remain in Vegas. LSD and psychedelic casino carpeting are two points that should really under no circumstances be skilled at the identical time.

Casino (1995)

De Niro and Scorsese scorch the screen once again this time in Casino, set in Las Vegas. Robert De Niro plays “Ace” Rothstein, a Jewish American gambling fixer, and Joe Pesci plays “Nicky” Santoro, a mob enforcer. Primarily based on actual life mobsters, the two group up to conquer the Las Vegas casino scene, a single crooked deal at a time.

When watching the film, you definitely want De Niro to do his common hothead routine and bash some unfortunate chump. But De Niro is neutered of any violence in his character, and Pesci is scripted with the temper trouble as an alternative. All round, you get a great yarn about the mob era of Vegas, how they schemed, scammed, skimmed, and buried a handful of bodies in the desert.

21 (2008)

Primarily based on the actual-life group of MIT students who counted cards to beat casinos, 21 stars Kevin Spacey as the professor who leads the scrappy group. 1 MIT mathematics big (Ben Campbell) gets accepted into Harvard Health-related College, but alas, he can not afford the $300,000 tuition. Following joining the Spacey professor’s group of blackjack nerds, Ben swiftly learns the science of card counting.

In a planet exactly where rising college charges and crushing student debt hamper the brightest minds, a single kid stood tall… and took his sensible ass to Vegas to whip the tables with his card counting expertise. Armed with a group of crack card counters, Ben and his partners go on a gambling frenzy. But drama is lurking in just about every shadowy casino in the kind of jealousy, betrayal, and a incredibly successful, bone-breaking safety thug (Laurence Fishburne).

Honeymoon in Vegas (1992)

Most of the films on this list are set in Vegas. Exactly where else? Vegas is a film writer’s dreamscape, complete of neon imagery, glitz and glamour, and extra Honeymoon in VegasElvis impersonators than you can shake a pelvis at. Lengthy prior to Nicolas Cage took the boozy way out in Leaving Las Vegas, he played a hapless buffoon attempting desperately to have a Honeymoon in Vegas.

This comedy utilizes ample Vegas clichés about card sharks, kitschy wedding chapels, and Elvis impersonators to kind a single bizarre stew that flips the rom-com genre on its ear. In quick: boy meets girl, boy desires to marry girl in Vegas, card shark steals girl, boy jumps out of a plane with hundreds of Elvis impersonators to win her back. Since that is how you do it in Vegas, infant.

Lock, Stock, and two Smoking Barrels (1998)

Guy Ritchie’s debut crime-comedy masterpiece, Lock, Stock, and two Smoking Barrels, is set in the seedy underworld of London. This film characteristics no casinos, but begins off with a plucky young card shark attempting to take down a huge card area against a notorious cockney gangster, “Hatchet” Harry. When points go terribly incorrect for the young card player (of course they do the game is rigged), he now has to repay a half-million-pound debt to a man named “Hatchet.”

Madcap hi-jinx ensues. Modest-time crooks in more than their heads embark upon just about every half-baked scheme imaginable to come up with the revenue to spend the debt. This ensemble cast of characters introduced Vinnie Jones and Jason Statham to the planet, but the film’s slick editing and witty script make it worthy of the cool list. Just watching the frenetic intercuts of quick motion with freeze frame – chips flipping, cards flying, shots drinking, beers toasting, and eyes shifting – tends to make for a single hell of a fashionable gambling yarn.

With a list of films about casinos and gambling this cool, it tends to make you want to binge watch them all, strap a rubber band about a wad of money, and head to the casino. Tuxedo, Aston Martin, and Elvis jumpsuit optional.

Nicole E. Phillips - Writer

Initially from Grand Rapids, Michigan, Nicole studied economics at the University of Chicago prior to moving to Singapore, exactly where she ended up as a monetary analyst at Nomura covering the southeast Asia casino markets. Following a lot of years of crunching numbers, Nicole ultimately decided it was time to switch careers and comply with her life lengthy dream of becoming a writer. Nowadays Nicole often blogs on casino connected subjects although functioning on her initially book, a non-fiction history of the rise of casino gambling in Macau. In her cost-free time Nicole loves to swim, mountain bike and ride horses.

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