Top 3 cult films featuring gambling

Photo: Carl Raw

Casinos are shrouded in an allure that attracts thousands of players year after year. They’ve played a part in shaping elements of our society. Therefore, it’s no surprise that gambling has been featured in many hit films due to all the associated glitz and glamour.

Gambling and film lovers, in general, will agree that the tension and thrill of casinos make for a perfect setting for high-drama moments. We’ve put together a selection of the top three cult films that feature casinos.

You might find that watching one of these films inspires you to try your hand at gambling. There are plenty of online casinos that allow you to play classic casino games from the comfort of your own home.

When choosing the best online casino platform, make sure to take a look at the different games, bonuses, and payment options on offer in your region. For example, Bonusfinder NJ wrote an article that compares the different elements of NJ-based online casinos, including a breakdown of the different bonuses available, to help you make an informed decision.

When it comes to gambling films, here are our top picks:

Rain Man (1988)

In this cult classic, directed by Barry Levinson, Tom Cruise plays a selfish automobile dealer named Charlie Babbit. Charlie discovers that his father left $3 million to his autistic brother, Raymond, who is portrayed by Dustin Hoffman. Raymond is highly intellectual, and Charlie exploits this by using him to help him win in Vegas at the Blackjack tables. 

According to IMDB, Dustin Hoffman would disappear and play games like blackjack when they filmed casino scenes. After production was halted so that they could try to find him, someone was assigned to keep an eye on him during takes.

Photo: Keenan Constance

Casino (1995)

Directed by Martin Scorsese, Casino is one of the most famous gambling movies. It contrasts the two sides of Vegas: the glamour, and the behind-the-scenes dealings that take place. Robert De Niro plays the protagonist, Ace, who is a resourceful mafia associate. He’s asked to run casinos in Las Vegas, where he rises to power. His seemingly normal lifestyle is ruined when his friend, a mafia linchpin, makes a return. The two compete with each other over a gambling empire and love interest, Ginger McKenna, played by Sharon Stone. This is a fantastic story that plays on the themes of money, power, deception, and ambition.

Fear and Loathing in Las Vegas (1998)

Based on the novel by Hunter S Thompson, this film details the story of Raoul, a journalist who heads to Las Vegas with his lawyer to cover a motorcycle race. However, hedonism soon takes over, and they begin to indulge in the “Sin City” side of Las Vegas and find themselves flirting with the wrong side of the law.

As cult classics, the above films guarantee to make for an excellent viewing experience for the viewer. By playing on the classic tropes associated with casinos, all three films successfully bring the magic of casinos to life.