Poker-themed films are a particular sub-genre that a wider audience has enjoyed for decades now. Even non-players are going to movie theaters to catch the latest poker film, as it always brings a combination of sharp intellect and thrilling danger to the big screen.
This interest is unsurprising considering the growing poker market, which is forecast to reach $92 billion by 2023. As more people are becoming interested in the game, every year, the latest poker flick attracts more crowds than ever before. And The Card Counter is one to look forward to when it drops this fall. Here’s what you should expect:
The Card Counter
Filled with revenge, poker, and thrilling revelations, The Card Counter is set to hit North American theaters starting September 10 this year. Other countries can anticipate an official release date on February 3 next year. The film was directed by Paul Schrader, also known for his other work on co-writing screenplays for Taxi Driver, The Yakuza, and the crime drama, American Gigolo.
The film follows the life of William Tell, a professional gambler, who crosses paths with a criminal, Cirk. The two share the same common enemy, but Tell struggles in his attempts to keep Cirk on the right path, eventually getting dragged into the mess and ends up facing some of the demons from his past. Tell uses his card skills and the help of gambling financier La Linda to take Cirk on the road with him.
Fans of classic thrillers and poker movies alike should look forward to the film’s release in the coming months. And more than likely, it will join the long list of the great poker films Hollywood has produced in recent years.
Poker in Hollywood
Card counting and poker have become popular themes in Hollywood movies. One of the most famous poker films of all time is Casino Royale, based on Ian Fleming’s iconic character, James Bond. Other popular features include the 2008 film, 21. Both films utilize the game as a device to drive the plot.
The game itself has become even more popular during the pandemic, with online poker tournaments setting new records, with some tournaments generating as much as $18 million. In addition to the professional tournaments, casual players have started playing poker online with friends, as more and more poker rooms continue to open. Some will even set up video chats as they play, mimicking a real-life poker game. When The Card Counter is released, it’ll undoubtedly catapult poker to greater heights, as more players will be drawn in by the thrill and excitement of high-stakes poker in one of the most highly-anticipated films of this year.
With a cast that boasts the likes of Oscar Isaac, Tiffany Haddish, Tye Sheridan, and Willem Dafoe, critics are expecting the film to be one of the topics releases of 2021. It may even join the ranks of some of the best poker films in Hollywood, including Vegas Vacation and Maverick.
With more mundane days ahead as the pandemic stretches on, more people will be looking forward to some great films to fill the void. Whether it’s a poker revenge plot or crime-thrillers, movies like The Card Counter help us look forward to something, even if it is only a 90-minute film.