Director: Rupert Wyatt
Screenwriter: William Monahan
Starring: Mark Wahlberg, John Goodman and Brie Larson
Release Date: 25th December 2014
Hollywood movies have long been obsessed with the charged and risky atmosphere of the casino. Even with the rise of online gambling, with many now making their high-stake plays from the privacy of their own homes, Hollywood still cannot get enough of the duality of sin and luxury offered by the casino setting. Therefore, in honour of Hollywood’s continued affair with glittering chandeliers, seedy dealings and shuffling cards, we’ve taken a look at the star-studded remake of The Gambler.
The original movie, released in 1974, was an equally slick and melancholic drama which, although later gaining cult-status, found little appreciation upon its original release. The Gambler was directed by Karel Reisz, who is best known for directing Meryl Streep’s Oscar-nominated performance in The French Lieutenant’s Woman, and written by James Toback, who based the narrative loosely off his own experiences. The film focuses on Harvard-educated professor Axel Freed, who is both an inspiration to his students and beloved by his family and friends. However, Axel – played with the perfect mixture of charisma and pathos by James Caan – has a secret; a potent gambling addiction that is quickly spiralling out of control.