Casinos and Cinema: Top 3 Characters

Film directors receive praise when they succeed in capturing great characters and performances on screen, in any setting. With the rise in popularity of casino games, fueled by the emergence of online casino options like, more directors than ever are catering to this audience with scenes where edgy characters are portrayed in high risk casino scenes. These are some of the best films that feature iconic film characters in dramatic casino gaming scenes.

James Bond – Casino Royale

Almost all the Bond films have casino scenes, but in this 2006 one the scene with Bond (portrayed by Daniel Craig) playing Le Chiffre at Texas Hold’em, is central to the drama. It is the hero up against the main villain in a high stakes game, with Bond knowing Le Chiffre plans to use any winnings to fund terrorist activity, and the recklessness 007 displays throughout indicates that this is a whole new, gritty version of the character.

Raymond Babbitt – Rain Man

Dustin Hoffman won an Oscar for his performance as the autistic Raymond Babbitt in Rain Man, and the casino scenes had a lot to do with that. Raymond’s brother, Charlie (Tom Cruise) takes him to Vegas to use his savant math skills to count the blackjack cards. Raymond’s astonishing ability, twitchiness, muttering and his inability to cope with the noise and lights of the casino, make this a scene where the audience learns more about autism, as well as the selfishness of Charlie.

Mike McDermott – Rounders

Although Matt Damon’s Mike McDermott is the lead character in this gambling drama, it is really Teddy KGB, played by John Malkovich that people remember from the casino scene. Again it is high stakes poker as McDermott tries to win enough to start a new life for himself, but it is the very obvious snack-related ‘tell’ of Teddy that makes this scene so entertaining.

As you see, there has been no shortage of memorable performances by great actors in casino based movies, but who would you put your money on at the poker table between these three?

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