If you’re a fan of casinos and casino movies, then you know that there are some excellent films out there. But if you’re not really into gambling or casinos, it’s difficult to find movies that capture the excitement and glamour of Las Vegas. There have been plenty of films made about gambling—and even more about people on edge—but most of them aren’t very good. Here’s a list of great non-hype casino movies:
- The Cooler
- Owning Mahowny
- Vegas Vacation
- The Good Thief
- Two for the Money
- Rain Man
- Casino Jack
The Cooler Gambling Movie (2003)
You might not think of a film about a casino employee as being particularly interesting, but The Cooler is an exception. This 2003 romantic drama follows Bernie Lootz (William H. Macy), a charming yet unlucky gambler who works at the Shangri-La casino in Las Vegas. His ability to influence the outcome of games through his “cooling” powers is noticed by Natalie (Maria Bello), the owner of another casino. She hires him for her business since it’s known among gamblers that he’s been able to work miracles for many years now.
Bernie soon becomes a big hit among high rollers who look forward to playing against him because they know he will pay out large amounts if they win – whichis far from playing free spins for $1 for the sake of entertainment. When Bernie loses, he ends up losing even more money than his clients do! As a result of this unusual arrangement, Natalie begins making more cash from Bernie than she does from her operations… until she realizes that there are some serious consequences involved with having such an unorthodox employee on staff!
Owning Mahowny Casino Movie (2003)
This film is based on a true story, which makes it even more interesting. It was written and directed by Richard Kwietniowski, and it stars Matt Damon as John “Buddy” Mahowny and Edward Norton as his accomplice Carl. The movie follows the introduction of gambling to Canada in the 1980s and then moves forward, telling the story of how one man’s addiction to gambling ends up costing him everything in his life: his family, his job, and even his freedom—he winds up in jail for embezzlement!
The movie was nominated for an Academy Award for Best Actor in a Supporting Role (Edward Norton) but unlike many players who play at Mega Moolah $1 deposit sites, didn’t win. However, it did receive good reviews from critics, with an IMDB rating of 8.3 out of 10 from more than 441 users at this time.
Vegas Vacation (1997)
If you’re looking for a comedy with a serious plot, Vegas Vacation may be just what you need. This film stars Chevy Chase and Beverly D’Angelo as two parents who take their dysfunctional family on a trip to Las Vegas. The plot is about how this trip helps them learn more about each other and grow closer together as a family. It also has some drama in it because the dad loses all of his money at the casino due to gambling addiction, which causes him and his wife some problems later on in their relationship.
The film was both critically acclaimed (it earned an 86 percent on Rotten Tomatoes) and commercially successful (it grossed over $72 million at the box office). It even spawned two sequels: Vegas Vacation 2: Cousin Eddie’s Island Adventure (1998), starring Randy Quaid as “Cousin” Eddie; and Vegas Vacation 3: The Final Cut (2003), which did not feature any members of its original cast aside from Kathleen Turner reprising her role as Ellen Griswold once again.
The Good Thief (2002)
The Good Thief (2002), starring Nick Nolte and Tchéky Karyo, is a movie that has been out for a while. However, it’s not about gambling, so it may slip under your radar. Set in France, this film was based on Graham Greene’s novel “The Honorary Consul.”
In the film, an American named Bob Munro is caught stealing diamonds from a jewelry store in Paris to sell them back home to fund his wife’s cancer treatments. While trying to evade the police, he meets up with another thief named Maurice, who offers him shelter but also leads him to become involved with murder and espionage between France and Mexico.
Two for the Money (2005)
Any time a movie is adapted from a novel, there’s always a chance the film will deviate from its source material. One of the most dramatic examples of this is “Two for the Money,” which was based on Walter Kirn’s novel and stars Al Pacino and Matthew McConaughey. In his review for The New York Times, A.O. Scott describes how “the story moves from one big-money transaction to another with such speed that it can leave you gasping.”
An ex-sports agent returns to the game when he meets Jennifer Tilly’s character, who convinces him to bet on college football games for her client. She doesn’t tell him about her other clients, though—and these are all former athletes who have lost their skills or want one last shot at glory in sports betting before they hang up their cleats forever!
Rain Man (1988)
Rain Man is a film about two brothers, one of which has autism. Raymond Babbitt (Dustin Hoffman) is an autistic savant with an extraordinary memory and other abilities. His brother Charlie Babbitt (Tom Cruise) is a self-centered businessman with little respect for his brother’s abilities. The movie follows the two on their road trip across the country to settle their father’s estate, during which they have many conflicts and heartwarming moments together.
It was nominated for Academy Awards—and won—for Best Picture, Best Director (Barry Levinson), Best Actor (Dustin Hoffman), and Best Original Screenplay (Ronald Bass). Dustin Hoffman won his Oscar for playing Raymond; Tom Cruise won his award for playing Charlie.
Casino Jack (2010)
Casino Jack is a 2010 film starring Kevin Spacey as Jack Abramoff, a notorious Washington lobbyist. It tells the story of how Abramoff became involved in a corruption scandal that shook Washington, DC to its core. Although not exactly an action film (the plot moves slowly), it’s interesting enough to keep you watching for two hours.
The movie is based on actual events and includes several real-life people. For example, George W Bush makes a cameo appearance as himself at one point during the movie, while Dick Cheney (played by Christian Slater) has a larger role later on in the film.
Some casino films are better than others. Some are more entertaining, some are more accurate, some are better for the actors, some are better for the director, and others still might be better for the plot or cinematography—but there’s something about each one that makes it worth watching.
So there you have it, our top picks for some of the most interesting casino movies out there. These are all great films, and we think that they deserve more attention than they get because they show a side of gambling that most people don’t know about but find fascinating once they do. If you’ve never seen these before, then make sure to check them out soon!
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