5 Classic poker movies we all love
Gambling in every bit as fun online, in land-based casinos and on the big screen, where Hollywood blockbusters frequently bring it into the spotlight. Poker is by far the most frequently depicted game in popular culture and there is no shortage of movies celebrating it. We help you narrow down the search for poker themed movies, as well as films centered on characters with a keen eye for the beautiful game.
- Casino Royale
The game credited with the merit of making online poker popular more than a decade ago is the James Bond classic Casino Royale movie. The timing was absolutely perfect, as the online gambling industry was gaining traction and poker rooms were flourishing. Daniel Craig played the role of 007 for the first time and did it brilliantly, while getting people curious about poker. The memorable hands played against the infamous banker have very little to do with what happens in real life, but were exciting nonetheless.
Rounders has had a major impact on the poker industry, just like Casino Royale, bringing new players to the online tables. The superb acting of Matt Damon, Edward Norton and John Malkovich ensured the success of a film telling a compelling story centered on the high-stakes underground poker world. Poker fans, as well as moviegoers appreciated the narrative, the manner in which the game was depicted and also the memorable quotes.
More than two decades ago, when Mel Gibson starred in Maverick, online poker was nonexistent and the game didn’t enjoy too much popularity worldwide. The movie was action-packed and even though the narrative was a bit silly, it was an entertaining film to watch. Once again, poker professionals and those who know the game well, have probably frown upon the lack of realism, in regard to the hands played by the actors. Then again, the film would’ve lost much of its charm, if the lead character would win with two pairs or even three of a kind.
- The Cincinnati Kid
Modern poker players who focus exclusively on Texas hold‘em and dismiss all other types of poker as nonsense, will probably clap their hands clearly unimpressed. The Cincinnati Kid is nevertheless, one of the best poker themed movies, with a stellar group of actors that included Steve McQueen and Edward Robinson. The classic game of 5 card stud appeals more to American players than their European counterparts, but the acting was fantastic and the game was depicted in a realistic manner.
- High Roller: The Stu Ungar Story
One of the less-known poker movies, but an excellent film nonetheless, High Roller: This is a term often used by trusted new casino sites to attract VIP players. The Stu Ungar Story does exactly what the name suggests. It tells the story of the youngest player to win the WSOP main event, his brilliance at poker and gin Rummy tables, but also his unravel. Ultimately destroyed by drugs, Stu Ungar is still regarded by many as the best poker player of all time.