Regardless of whether you are a professional gambler, or if you just like gambling-themed movies, chances are you have a gambling idol (or idols). Should we talk about gambling idols, it is fictional gambling characters that come to mind first. Below, we have have described some of the most famous fictional gambling characters in movies. The actors who played the following characters have done an outstanding job, for years after their performances their fictional characters are still praised by gamblers all over the world. Which of these fictional gamblers appeal to you?
10. Eddie Mush (Eddie Montanaro) in A Bronx Tale (1993)
Eddie Montanaro’s role as Eddie Mush was the only role he ever played. But boy, did he play it well! Rumour has it that Robert De Niro could not find the right actor to take Mush’s role, so he asked the star of the film—Chazz Palminteri—to find the perfect Mush. The film is great in every way, thanks to Eddie Mush and his funny, but not ironic, performance.
9. Axel Freed (James Caan) in The Gambler (1974)
Created as a fictional story by James Toback, The Gambler is a movie like no other. Interestingly, it is based on the film writer’s on experience as a gambling addict. The Gambler portrays the struggles one might experience after falling into a gambling addiction, like those of Axel Freed – a professor who runs up a huge debt after becoming a gambling addict. Additionally, the movie also shows how, prior to the emergence of the online gambling business, the gambling market was controlled by hippies and bookies.
8. Teddy KGB (John Malkovich) in Rounders (1998)
John Malkovich’s performance as Teddy KGB has made him a star. He recreated the aura of a creepy gambler that just might as well be a hard-boiled criminal perfectly. Albeit not very smart, Teddy KGB is an awe-aspiring character who proves that he is a man of integrity when he gets crushed and admits it saying, "Pay dat man his money".
7. Jay Trotter (Richard Dreyfuss) in Let It Ride (1989)
Jay Trotter – the gambler everyone marvels at, but nobody wants to emulate. Scott Weinberg reviewed Dreyfuss’s character in a great way, saying that he symbolises one of few selfish bastards man could actually like.
6. Henry Gondroff (Paul Newman) in The Sting (1973)
Watching The Sting is must – that is one of the finest movies of the 20th century. The movie shows a poker duo—Johnny Hooker and Paul Newman—managing a scam that covers poker playing and even horse racing. In the movie, Paul’s characters epitomises one of many gamblers, confident that they can fool everyone.
5. Monty Capuletti (Rodney Dangerfield) in Easy Money (1983)
Rodney Dangerfield plays Monty Capuletti – a man who loves smoking, drinking, and gambling. He is the typical gambler, who loves gambling almost as much as he despises his mother-in-law. As the movie unfolds, Monty’s friend Mony gets a tip and it is time to go to the racetrack.
4. Sydney (Philip Baker Hall) in Hard Eight (1996)
Despite not the only movie developed in the Sundance Institute Lab, this is the only film in which Paul Thomas Anderson does not succeed in having his suggested title (Sydney) approved.
Hard Eight portrays the gambler Sydney, whose skills do not end with gambling. He also knows how to find a way around paying for hotel rooms, buffets, smokes, etc. The story develops when John C. Reilly needs money for his mother’s funeral. Sydney teaches him how to play and a friendship sprouts.
3. Rusty Ryan (Brad Pitt) in Ocean’s 11 (2001)
Ocean’s 11 would not have been such a success without the brilliant acting of Brad Pitt. Truly inspiring, the actor managed to create a fictional character, idolised by many gamblers even today. Rusty uses amazing metaphors throughout the film, plus his character is kinda comic, too.
2. Sam 'Ace' Rothstein (Robert De Niro) in Casino (1995)
One does not simply gamble without having watched Robert De Niro’s unique performance in Casino. This is arguably the first-ever (and by far the last) movie which portrays the relationship between Vegas casino operators and the mob in such a realistic manner. A Las Vegas casino operator, Sam finds his business rather successful at first. Over the years, however, things get complicated.
1. James Bond (Daniel Craig) in Casino Royale (2006)
Women. Tuxedos. Poker. Hardly is there a person that does not know who James Bond is. Said to be his best performance, Daniel Craig’s representation of the legendary agent Bond tops our list. Casino Royale attracted a massive group of admirers and although there is practically no bad scene in the movie, we find the last poker hand scene particularly well-played. Lastly, no man wearing a suit will look as good as James Bond.