With the recent rumors a foot of Rounders 2 finally happening I thought it would be fun to revisit the time and an old post. A while back I managed to catch up with Brian Koppelman the producer and writer behind such great films as Rounders, Ocean’s Thirteen and Runner Runner to discuss his favorite gambling films:
@PartyPoker Hard Eight. The Sting. The Hustler. Cinci.
— Brian Koppelman (@briankoppelman) June 7, 2013
My top 8 Gambling Films in no particular order that I’d recommend:
1 Rounders (1998)
First up let’s get the obvious one out of the way. Yeah yeah. Seriously though here’s some essential viewing for any budding poker player out there. Whilst it initially didn’t receive great reviews at the cinema later on due to the boom of Texas hold ’em it became quite the cult classic.
A star studded cast with the hero Matt Damon, Edward Norton the friend in need and an all together nasty nasty piece of work John Malkovich make this one well worth studying if you want to go far in poker. Just remember those Oreo’s aint for you.
2 The Cincinnati Kid (1965)
Another classic tale here and this time around we see Steve McQueen playing the role of Eric “The Kid” Stoner. He’s desperate to establish his reputation as being the best poker player the land has ever seen (he must have graduated from our poker school). We join him on his adventures and truly experience the highs and lows of the old poker road.
3 Casino (1995)
Las Vegas, Robert De Niro, Joe Pesci and Sharon Stone and directed by Martin Scorcese. Things are going to get bad, real bad.
4 The Hustler (1961)
Sure it isn’t poker but this one deserves to be up there. Staring Paul Newman as “Fast Eddie” Felson a small-time pool hustler with an unquenchable thirst to prove himself as the best player. Sometimes you feel you can’t miss and this is one of them.
5 Oceans 11 (2001)
I can already hear it “but it’s not as good as the original…” read below as I got you covered, actually I think my father is the only one who would make such a claim. No matter this is a two-for-one in my opinion, watch the original then this and you’ll see why.
Directed by Steven Soderbergh, action packed right from the get go and an A-List Hollywood cast as long as your arm staring George Clooney, Brad Pitt, Andy Garcia, Julia Roberts, Matt Damon, Don Cheadle, Bernie Mac, and Elliott Gould make this one a ton of fun.
Bonus – The Original Soundtrack is by David Holmes and well worth a listen.
6 Oceans 11 (1960)
The book was better than the film right? Not always too sure about that one, but the first Oceans 11 is well worth a watch if you’ve not had the chance.
Starring the original Rat Pack with Frank Sinatra as Danny Ocean, watch as he bands together his World War II buddies to pull off the ultimate Las Vegas heist. But dam you know what they say about the best laid plans?
7 The Color of Money (1986)
First up do a quick search for the trailer as they just don’t make trailers like this anymore do they? “PAUL NEWMAN….TOM CRUISE….IN A MARTIN SCORSESE PICTURE….” sit back and enjoy the slick moves by Tom.
8 The Sting (1973)
Ending on a real high note pardon the pun “The Sting” featured Paul Newman, Robert Redford and that god dam infectious Scott Joplin ragtime ‘Entertainer’ composition. It proved to be hugely successful and ended up being nominated for 10 Oscars and winning an incredible 7. If only I could get that song out of my head…
So What Did I Miss?
How many have you seen? and which did I miss? Let’s hear it! Get it off your chest you’ll feel better. Just like the time I wrote Top 50 Poker Twitter Handles That You Need To Be Following I’d love to hear “WHAT those films suck you dumb a** I can’t believe you missed [insert your favorite film]!!!” Thanks, no really thanks!