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Tuesday, January 26, 2016

Movies About 'Gambling'



Take a look @ classic movies with 'gambling' as the main story focus including "The Big Town", "The Gambler", "California Split" and "Croupier":


One common trend with gambling in movies is that many of them (with the exception of Martin Scorsese's "Casino"), feature a peripheral mention of gambling, with sequences rarely comprehensive, doing little to impress everyday players.


"The Big Town" (1987), directed by Ben Bolt and Harold Becker, features a variation of the game known as 'heads up craps' where players make side bets between themselves instead of  betting against the house.


Odds of the games were negotiated among the parties involved with the focus getting someone else to agree on 50-50 odds.


The film stars Matt Dillon as a successful craps shooter who moves to Chicago to become a professional player, when craps was popular before the rise of today's casino games played online. 


Director Karel Reisz' "The Gambler" (1974), stars James Caan as a college professor who descends into a destructive gambling addiction, losing in underground casinos and gambling den brothels even when he was the one at the wheel controlling the game.


The drama highlights the life of many addicted gamblers who lose as a form of self-inflicted punishment.


But the film is so well-crafted, it can be a welcome viewing distraction from the glut of one-note movies.


Director Robert Altman's "California Split" (1974), follows two friends, played by Elliot Gould and George Segal, who decide to take their gambling seriously, pooling their funds together for a trip to Reno Nevada.


"California Split" features a wide range of gambling including casino, poker, horse racing and sports betting. 


The one downside to the film is that it features cliché scenes of violence involving money owed to bookies. 


But "California Split" is a classic film that portrays gambling in a good light, with the protagonists winning big in the end.


Director Mike Hodges' "Croupier" (1998), is a 'neo noir' feature, produced in the style of classic detective movies, launching the career of actor Clive Owen. 


Owen plays a London-based, cold-hearted casino croupier, busy trying to write a great novel while struggling to eke out a decent living. 


The character gets involved in a sexually charged relationship with a wealthy gambler who offers him close to $30,000 to take part in a casino heist.


As a dedicated gambler and thrill-seeker, the character is more than willing to take a chance...


Click the images to enlarge and Sneak Peek "The Big Town", "The Gambler", "California Split" and "Croupier":