4 Poker Movies That Left a Lasting Impression

3 months ago
4 Poker Movies That Left a Lasting Impression
08:44
25 Aug

There have already been several poker films that brought our beloved game to the silver screen. But only a few of them have succeeded in having a lasting effect on the poker community and the audience at large. Showing the world of poker from different angles, in varying settings, and with changing focuses, these movies left their mark on the world.


Rounders (1998) – The indie film that started it all

It all began in the year 1998 when John Dahl created the movie Rounders with Matt Damon and Edward Norton. Although it only received mixed reviews at the time of the release, it later became a cult hit. The movie takes place in the underground high-stakes poker scene in New York, where two friends try to win big to pay back a big debt. As can be expected, they run into challenges and problems, as well as the dangerous mobster “KGB” (John Malkovich).

Why are we naming this movie here? It hasn’t just become a cult hit over the years, it was also one of the movies that sparked the poker boom that followed just a couple of years after the movie’s release. Many players state that they got into the game after seeing Rounders, which has several intense and authentic poker scenes. It’s no wonder many people wanted to try the card game themselves after watching the movie.


Bet Raise Fold (2013) – The documentary on the emerging online poker world

Bet Raise Fold is a documentary that shows the lives of real players in the early years of the poker boom. It depicts the rise of online poker and how it emerged into a multimillion-dollar industry in the early 2000s – until “Black Friday” in 2011 brought it to an abrupt halt in the US. The documentary shows the history of online poker from the perspective of three online poker players, whose lives were changed both by the poker boom and “Black Friday”.

Bet Raise Fold is a unique movie that shows how the world of online poker evolved in the early 2000s. Following the poker boom in 2003 after Chris Moneymaker, an amateur online poker player, won the World Series of Poker Main Event, the card game quickly rose to global fame. Today, poker has found its place on the internet, where it is now played around the world. As the demand for online poker continues to grow, more sites offer the card game on the web. Even players from Arabic countries can now play poker online at various sites for Arabic players and play different poker variations, from Texas Hold’em and Omaha to Live Dealer Poker. Many advantages of online poker, such as being able to play anywhere at any time, continue to make it popular across the world. The documentary Bet Raise Fold shows how the world of online poker developed in an emotional and realistic way. If you love online poker, this documentary is for you.


Molly’s Game (2017) – The Oscar-nominated true story

Molly’s Game is a different kind of poker film altogether, which doesn’t show the world of poker through the eyes of a player, but from the perspective of an organizer of an underground high-stakes poker tournament. What makes this film even more exciting and noteworthy, is the fact that it’s based on true events: the life of Molly Bloom. She ran an underground poker empire that was frequented by celebrities and even the Russian mob. Things start to unravel when Bloom finds herself and her poker tournament in the limelight of the FBI.

The movie is based on the memoir by Molly Bloom. Actress Jessica Chastain plays the poker queen in the film and brings her story to life on the screen. Molly’s Game received critical acclaim, and director Aaron Sorkin even got an Oscar nomination for Best Adapted Screenplay. Making it to the prestigious Academy Awards is a major success for a poker movie, which has brought the game a tremendous amount of worldwide attention as people flocked to cinemas to watch the hit movie that centers around poker.


James Bond 007: Casino Royale (2006) – Bond taking poker to the mainstream

Casino Royale is another movie that brings the card game into the limelight: James Bond 007: Casino Royale. While this is not actually a poker movie, it has still been a major success for the card game. Seeing 007 play an intense, nerve-wracking round of No-Limit Texas Hold’em against his nemesis is not just exciting for fans of the card game, but the entire audience. With a huge franchise such as James Bond showing the game, poker has found its way into a mainstream movie. Surely authenticity was not the main concern in this case, but that doesn’t make it any less significant, that a James Bond movie has its very own intense poker scenes.

Poker movies have been around for quite a while, yet some have managed to leave a lasting impression. From Rounders to Casino Royale, these movies brought poker into the limelight in their own specific way, and have influenced the poker scene as a whole.


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Writer and semi-retired poker pro from Edinburgh (UK).Read more

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