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Best performances in casino based films

Film directors and actors receive praise for the portrayal of characters on the cinema screen, if those portrayals are genuinely memorable. The popularity of online casino gaming has led to more of these characters being gamblers and casino tycoons, as casinos are often connected with drama, high risks and crime in movieland, which makes for thrilling characters. Sites such as those found at have even created slots games in homage to some of these characters which furthers the connection.

These are three of the best performances in casino films.

James Bond – Casino Royale

James Bond has always favored casinos, but the scene in this 2006 Daniel Craig-starring installment had greater tension and excitement than any previous one. Playing villain Le Chiffre at Texas Hold’em poker (rather than his usual baccarat), with the knowledge that his opponent plans to use any winnings to support terrorist activity, made this gaming about as high stakes as you could possibly get.

Raymond Babbitt – Rain Man

This character played by Dustin Hoffman was one of the very first cinematic portrayals of autism, and the casino scene was a killer. Taken to Vegas by his brother Charlie, so they can exploit his savant maths skills to count the blackjack cards, Raymond’s repeated mantra of “we are counting cards” (not the best thing to say out loud when you’re counting cards in Vegas), amazing abilities and hatred of the casino atmosphere make this scene a memorable one.

Mike McDermott – Rounders

Unlike a lot of gambling movies, this 1998 movie starring Matt Damon as poker player Mike McDermott is rated highly by real-life gamblers. However the scene that people remember, with Russian gangster Teddy KGB (John Malkovich) and his very obvious, biscuit-related ‘tell’ is certainly very memorable – but not all that realistic. As you can see from this list, there have been plenty of genuinely iconic performances by Hollywood actors in casino gaming films, but which one of these three would you bet on at the poker table?



Go BackGo to main page Last Updated on December 11, 2014 For suggestions please mail the editors