Top 10 blackjack films – Find the right film for you

Blackjack is one of the oldest and most popular casino games. The card game has managed to captivate many players with its simple rules and excellent chances of winning. Present in most land-based casinos around the world, it is not surprising that the legendary game has been featured in many popular movies. Ready to explore your options? We’ve prepared a special blackjack movie list with the best movies to watch. Stay with us and keep reading this article to learn more.

1. Most Famous Blackjack Movie: Swingers (1996)

Country: United States Director: Doug Liman IMDb Score: 7.2 / 10

Swingers is a 1996 American cult film about the lives of several unemployed single actors living in Hollywood, California during the swing revival of the 1990s. The film quickly became a hit and introduced Vince Vaughn, Heather Graham and Ron Livingston to fame. In a nutshell, the plot revolves around Mike Peters – a struggling actor who decides to come to Los Angeles in search of success. Unfortunately, not everything goes according to plan. His girlfriend Michell breaks up with him, and his friend Trent and other aspiring actors help him get back on his feet.

Where’s the best place to do this, you ask? Las Vegas, of course! The group of friends organize an impromptu trip to Sin City, where they find themselves in several unexpected and fun situations. One of the most iconic Vegas scenes in the film also shows two of the friends arguing about whether they should double out of 11 every chance they get. If you really feel connected to the scene, we suggest you read our article on blackjack odds .

2. Austin Powers: International Man of Mystery (1997)

Country: United States Director: Jay Roach IMDb Rating: 7.0 / 10

Austin Powers: International Man of Mystery (1997) is the first of three films by Austin Powers. The story begins in 1967 when British agent Austin Power is cryogenically frozen with his enemy Dr. Evil. Thirty years later, Austin Power and Dr Evil are no longer frozen and must adapt to the modern world. As you probably know, the film is full of hilarious scenes and lots of laughs, but what makes it one of the funniest blackjack films of all time?

Although the film is not specifically about the game, there is one particular blackjack scene that many Austin Powers fans still remember. In this one, Number Two ignores his dealer’s advice and insists on hitting 17. Of course, no one knows that his X-ray vision allows him to see that the next card is 4, and he would win. Eager to compete with him, Austin Powers decides to follow Number Two’s risky move and stay on 5, regarding his dealer’s suggestion that he should hit. As anyone familiar with the rules of blackjack would expect, the British spy loses.

3. 21 (2008) – Among the best blackjack movies

Country: United States Director: Robert Luketik IMDb Score: 6.8 / 10

21 is an American robbery drama based on the facts about six MITs who become card counting experts and decide to try their skills in Las Vegas casinos. It all begins when Ben Campbell (Jim Sturges), a gifted student, is accepted to Harvard Medical School, but cannot afford the $300,000 tuition. He applies for a scholarship but faces stiff competition, and his professor tells him that the scholarship will go to the student who impresses him the most.

Meanwhile, back at MIT, Professor Micky Rosa challenges Ben with Monty Hall’s problem, which he successfully solves. After looking at Ben’s latest test scores, Professor Rosa decides to invite him to join his blackjack team, which is made up of some of his classmates. By using card counting and secret signalling, the team increases their chances of winning and manages to collect important rewards. The blackjack team begins to make regular trips to Las Vegas, where Ben quickly adapts to a new luxurious lifestyle. We won’t give you any more spoilers, but if you want to know more about the blackjack movie, please read our article about the story behind the movie 21 . If you still don’t know if 21 is the right film for you.

4. Croupier (1998)

Country: United Kingdom Director: Mike Hodges IMDb Score: 7.1 / 10

The 1998 British neo-Black film tells the story of Jack Manfred, an aspiring writer who takes a job as a croupier in London. The protagonist soon finds himself drawn to the casino world and his work begins to affect his life. Jack befriends his fellow croupier Matt and goes out with Bella – one of the other casino croupiers. As expected, his relationship with his girlfriend Marion also begins to fall apart, especially after he allows her to read part of his book about a cold and cynical dealer who likes to see gamblers lose. The main character is quickly based on Jack himself and reflects the way he sees his work.

The blackjack movie looks at the casino world from a new angle and reveals the less glamorous part of the game. We don’t want to spoil the film for you, so we won’t reveal any more details. Once you have watched it, however, we advise you to take a look at our full article on The Dealer (1998).

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5. Rain Man (1988) – A classic blackjack movie

Country: United States Director: Barry Levinston IMDb Score: 8.0 / 10

Rain Man is an American comedy-drama that tells the story of two totally different brothers. After Charlie Babbitt (Tom Cruise) learns that his former father has passed away, he and his girlfriend Susanna travel to Cincinnati, Ohio, to settle the estate. There, he discovers that his father has left a $3 million inheritance to his older brother Raymond Babbitt (Dustin Hoffman), whom he didn’t know before. Deciding to receive at least a portion of his father’s inheritance, Charlie goes to a psychiatric facility where his brother recruits him. Following certain events, the brothers leave for a road trip, which includes Las Vegas, where Charlie plans to make money at blackjack by counting cards .

Rain Man reveals a fascinating story about family, ambition and, of course, card counting. Of course, we will not reveal how the film ends, but we would advise you to take a look at the trailer. In the meantime, if you would like to know more about the available blackjack systems before watching the film, please read our article on blackjack strategies .

6. The Last Casino (2004)

Country: Canada Director: Pierre Gill IMDb Score: 7.1 / 10

The Canadian film The Last Casino is often referred to as the predecessor of the famous film 21 , which is not surprising given that their plots are almost identical. The story revolves around mathematics professor Doug Barnes, who is used to winning blackjack by counting cards, but one day, Wilson, the head of security, captures his face on camera and puts it on a blacklist in the casino. After discussing the situation with his loan shark Orr, Barnes decides that he should create a blackjack team of card counters. His university students are the best candidates and the professor recruits three of them. He convinces them that his plans are low-risk and teaches them how to count cards. Barnes gives all the team members new identities, and they soon plunge into a new life full of gambling and luxury.

Although quite similar to 21, The Last Casino also has a compelling story and is well worth watching. It reveals not only the glamour of the game, but also the risks of counting baskets and losing control of the game. We think it is also interesting to look at the gambling world in Canada and compare it to the one described in many Las Vegas movies. For your convenience, we have provided the trailer for The Last Casino and sincerely hope that you enjoy watching one of the best blackjack movies.

7. The Hangover (2009)

Country: United States Director: Todd Phillips IMDb Rating: 7.7 / 10

The Hangover (2009), is, without a doubt, one of the most popular American comedies. The plot revolves around four friends, who travel to Las Vegas for a bachelor party. When things get unexpectedly out of control, three of them wake up in a hotel room with no memory of the previous night. They are then forced to retrace their steps and find their friend who disappeared before his wedding. Wondering why we’ve included The Hangover in our list of blackjack movies? The reason is a particular scene.

After Alan (Zack Galifianakis), Stu (Ed Helms) and Phil (Bradley Cooper) are led to believe that their friend Doug (Justin Bartha) is being held hostage by the Asian gangster Chaw, they have to collect $80,000 in ransom money. Alan then suggests that they put into practice the skills learned from the « World’s Greatest Blackjack Book » and win at blackjack by counting cards. The three friends then head to the casino, where Alan manages to win all the money they need. The scene is considered one of the funniest moments in the film and is well worth watching.

8. The gambler (2014)

Country: United States Director: Rupert Wyatt IMDb Score: 6.0 / 10

The American crime drama The Gambler (2014) tells the story of literature professor and regular gambler Jim Bennett, whose debt led him to borrow money from his mother and a loan shark. His creditor gives him seven days to pay off his debts or face serious consequences. Interestingly, Jim’s two favourite games to play in underground casinos are roulette and blackjack. Even though the literature professor seems to have decent blackjack skills and is doing well at the game, he decides to bet it all on a single spin of roulette. Logically, his decision leads to more problems, and his decision follows him as he tries to solve them.

The Gambler describes the negative effects gambling could have on a person’s life in an unusually fun way. The film is well worth watching and has been hailed by many critics.

9. The Cooler (2003)

Country: United States Director: Wayne Kramer IMDb Score: 7.0 / 10

The popular American romantic drama film The Cooler tells the story of Bernie Lootz (William H. Macy). The main character lives in a horrible studio motel near the Las Vegas Strip and is indebted to the casino boss Shangri-La Shelly Kaplow. Interestingly enough, years ago, Kaplow also helped him cure his gambling habits by breaking his kneecaps. Tired of living in Sin City, Lootz informs Shelly one day that he plans to leave Las Vegas. Since Kaplow has other plans for him, however, he hires Shelly to seduce Bernie and convince him to work in his casino.

Lootz’s role at the casino is to target players who win huge sums of money, especially at games like blackjack. His job is to « calm down » the situation by posing as another player at the table and giving the casino an advantage. 

10. Casino (1995) – One of the most epic blackjack films ever made.

Country: United States Director: Martin Scorsese IMDb Score: 8.2 / 10

Martin Scorsese’s masterpiece, Casino, is a story of greed, ambition, money and power. The film tells the story of Sam « Ace » Rothstein (Robert De Niro), an expert gambling handicapper, who was asked by Chicago Outfit to oversee all the activities and operations of their casino from Tangier to Las Vegas. Sam quickly manages to double the casino’s profits and is soon joined by his friend Nicky Santoro (Joe Pesci), who due to his temperament, does more harm than good.

What is interesting about this character, however, is that his tough personality allows him to catch players cheating at the blackjack tables of the Tangier casino . In the scene in question, the players are caught « scaring », which is a form of cheating, in which a person stands behind the dealer and passes the information on to his associates at the table. In the film, Nicky catches the cheater and gives him the opportunity to forfeit his winnings or go out with them, but suffers serious consequences. Want to know more about the film? We won’t give you more spoilers, but you can read our full review of the movie Casino for more details.

Conclusion

We hope you found our list of blackjack movies useful and that you managed to find the right movie for you. In the meantime, if our selected films have inspired you, we also have a full page with the best places to play blackjack. Here you will find the best online blackjack casinos, many games and special bonuses! And if you want to take it up a notch and play against a real professional dealer, you can do so at one of our best recommended live blackjack sites. But don’t forget to play responsibly and don’t follow the reckless behaviour of some of the characters from our recommended movies.

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