Brits and gambling go way back, so it is not surprising to see British actors taking roles in some of the most popular casino movies of all time.
The characters can be endearing, captivating, and motivating even though they frequently belong to the criminal underworld and occasionally play real money slots at casinos. Nevertheless, we advise you to stick to ethical gaming and leave dishonesty and troublemaking to these fictional characters! Here’s where you’ll find your daily dose of British film stars in great casino movies.
Also dubbed as “the best casino movie you never saw”, Croupier (1998) is a neo-noir, which means it probably won’t hit the soft spot with mainstream audiences. Clive Owen took on the role of the titular croupier, a man trying to write a book while working at a casino. As you can imagine, he gets involved with the wrong people and experiences more troubles than one can imagine. But is it a small price to pay, to end up writing a bestseller? Watch the film to find out!
Ocean’s Eleven (2001)
When we say “British actors”, Ocean’s eleven (2001) is not the first film that pops to mind. However, next to Matt Damon, Brad, Pitt, and George Clooney, we also get to witness an amazing performance by the late Robin Sachs. Truth be told, Soderbergh would have done better with ditching Don Cheadle and his abomination of a British accent and replacing him with a native Brit, but what’s done is done.
This is a story that needs no introduction. Danny Ocean gathers a gang of skilful scammers, cheaters and imposers, to rob Las Vegas casinos and get attention from his ex-wife. The rest is history.
Lock, Stock and Two Smoking Barrels (1998)
On the other end of the spectrum is Lock, Stock and Two Smoking Barrels (1998), Guy Ritchie’s masterpiece that paved the way for him to become an international superstar. The flick begins with a poker game, and as it usually happens in Ritchie’s movies, we see a plethora of quirky characters in crazy situations.
A star-studded cast (think Jason Flemyng, Dexter Fletcher, Nick Moran, and Jason Statham), intrigue, smart dialogue, colourful language, an impressive soundtrack, and a whole lot of violence made Lock, Stock and Two Smoking Barrels (1998) one of the best British movies about gambling.
After Lock, Stock and Two Smoking Barrels (1998), Ritchie continued to amaze us, but this time, with quite a vivid display of the world of underground sports betting. Although Brad Pitt steals the show by playing the Irish Traveller boxer Mickey O’Neil, we also get to see sensational performances by Jason Statham, Jason Flemyng, Vinnie Jones, Alan Ford, and plenty of others.
The story is typical of Richie. Dishonest boxing promoters, sneaky bookmakers, one Russian gangster, petty criminals, and a bunch of other characters all have only one mission: to track down a priceless diamond before the others.
Casino Royale (2006)
The greatest secret agent of all secret agents is, without a doubt, James Bond. In casino Royale, Mr. Bond, played by one and only Daniel Craig, plays an electrifying game of poker that will go down in history. The world’s most famous spy finds himself in a VIP room, where only high rollers can enter, going against no other than the main villain – Le Chiffre.
Many have doubted Daniel Craig had the charisma necessary to play Bond, and with Casino Royale (2006) he proved them all wrong. He was so good, we are ready to compare all future Bonds not to Sean Connery, but to Craig.