Three of a kind: cards on film | TQS Magazine

Few activities are so perfectly suited to the silver screen as a simple game of cards. If you’re in my group of friends, there’s nothing like sitting in front of a fire with a large glass of red, a deck of cards and a decent film. Not only does a card game provide a great blend of drama and suspense, but the big winnings on offer frequently lend themselves to some seriously glamorous locations too.

So if you’re looking for a little card-playing inspiration, check out some of these top card-playing moments in the movies.

1. Rain Man

This controversial Oscar-winning film was famous for a fantastic performance by Tom Cruise who takes advantage of his long-lost autistic brother played by Dustin Hoffman for his own financial gain. But what really made the film succeed were moments such as the iconic blackjack scene where Hoffman’s character managed to successfully use the method of card-counting to beat the dealer and pay off over $80,000 in debts.

Those seeking to follow in the Rain Man’s exploits could always try their hand at the upcoming LadyLuck’s Gibraltar Blackjack Tournament where players get to compete for a share in the £10,000 prize pool and enjoy the glamorous location without the threat of gangland bosses found in the critically-acclaimed Hollywood film!

2. Casino Royale

With the unavoidable waves of hype that are accompanying the latest Bond film Spectre, it seems only fair that we include James Bond’s most notable card-playing moment in Casino Royale. This provided a suitably dramatic, yet somewhat hammy instance of Daniel Craig playing high-stakes poker in a luxurious Monte Carlo casino.

The gameplay was really ramped up by all of the stereotypes of high-stakes gaming with glamorous women and hushed voices around the playing table, but what really made the scene special was the villainous Le Chiffre weeping blood out of his eye at the pinnacle of the gaming action.

3. The Gambler

And finally, one of the best card-playing films to hit cinemas recently was this year’s The Gambler. As a remake of the highly-popular 1974 film of the same name, it was always going to receive mixed reviews, but the movie has helped provide a clear illustration of how exciting card-playing can be.

The film focused on a gifted college professor who has a dangerous penchant for gambling. We get to see the character performing some impressive card-playing tricks, but his playing becomes increasingly risky and as such, runs foul of various underworld characters who are keen to claim back the gambler’s huge debts. With Mark Wahlberg playing the central character, it provided a heavy-hitting portrayal of gambling excess, and though the film was sometimes a little sentimental, The Gambler gave card-playing a much needed update for 2015 movie audiences.