7 Movies That Get Gambling Right

[email protected] the blowup

Gambling is a popular pastime in movies but is not always portrayed accurately. Here are seven films that get gambling right, from suspenseful casino thrillers to light-hearted poker comedies. Whether you’re a fan of gambling or not, these films are sure to entertain.

The Sting

The Sting, released in 1973 and starring Paul Newman and Robert Redford, is a classic caper movie that is often remembered for its humor and gripping storyline. However, one of the reasons it stands out is because it’s one of the few films that gets gambling right. From the recognizable hustles used in the scene to accurately portraying the tension at a poker table – between gamblers trying to outwit each other and fearful casino owners watching their profits dwindle – The Sting expertly captures all aspects of gambling. As far as movies that use gambling as part of the plot go, The Sting still stands out today as an iconic representation of how thrilling but also dangerous this pastime can be.

The Cincinnati Kid

Starring Steve McQueen and Edward G. Robinson, the movie follows a high-stakes poker game between two different men – a calm, calculated professional and an ambitious rookie determined to establish himself. Along with its remarkable cast and engaging storyline, what makes this film so accurate in its depiction of gambling is its realistic representation of the behaviors, emotions, and psychology associated with playing high-stakes games. The fear in Stuart Rosenberg’s direction combined with Norman Jewison’s writing makes “The Cincinnati Kid” an iconic story of ambition and overindulgence that any fan of gambling will appreciate.


Rounders, starring Matt Damon and Edward Norton, directed by John Dahl and set in New York City, is an excellent movie that positively captures the world of high-stakes underground poker. The plot follows law student Mike McDermott, who makes a deal with his former gambling mentor to pay off loan sharks while reclaiming his reputation as a card player.

From the impressive performances of each lead actor to incredible cinematography and a slick soundtrack, Rounders captures all the drama and excitement of professional gambling without glamorizing it. Furthermore, it addresses critical issues related to responsible gambling.


‘Casino’ is a classic movie that has gone down in film history for its realism and captivating narrative. Released in 1995, the Martin Scorsese-directed drama follows the story of a powerful but volatile mob leader in Las Vegas as he runs multiple casinos during the city’s “golden age” of gaming. Robert De Niro plays the lead antagonist with masterful precision. At the same time, other noteworthy performances come from Sharon Stone and Joe Pesci, playing characters who get caught up in the shady business dealings of the mob boss.

Beyond its star-studded cast, what makes ‘Casino’ such an iconic movie is how it tells a complex story about crime, power, and greed that rings true to real-life mafia sagas in Las Vegas.

Owning Mahowny

As an exemplary study in addiction, Owning Mahowny follows the story of a bank manager’s spiral into uncontrollable and ultimately reckless gambling. With brilliant performances from Minnie Driver and Philip Seymour Hoffman, excellent direction from Richard Kwietniowski, and a score that captures the intensity and edges of this movie, Owning Mahowny feels almost documentary-like in its rendering of a grim story. Watching it provides insight into how recklessness can take over compulsive behavior.

Hard Eight

With a star-studded cast including Phillip Baker Hall, John C. Reilly, and Gwyneth Paltrow, Hard Eight brings the dark side of gambling to life. Following the story of a small-time grifter trying to hustle his way up in Sin City, we get an inside look at most aspects of gambling—the highs and lows plus everything in between.

While it’s full of thrilling twists and turns, Hard Eight also accurately portrays the risks one takes when one visits a brick-and-mortar casino, some risks that many novice gamblers forget when they’re eager to place their first chip on the table. Great entertainment, no matter your level of experience with betting!

Molly’s Game

Molly’s Game is a thrilling drama that follows the story of former Olympic skier Molly Bloom, who becomes a high-stakes underground poker organizer for wealthy business executives and famous movie stars after a life-altering injury. It offers an exciting and unique perspective on the world of clandestine gambling.

The film realistically portrays the vast risks these players take and explores how much money can be won – or lost – in such an environment. With riveting scenes and carefully crafted dialogue, Molly’s Game demonstrates that it takes more than just luck to get ahead in this game. This delightful movie will leave you wanting to play online slots with real money and make you want to become a part of this captivating online gambling world too.