Roulette in the Movies

No one can really dispute that roulette is the most famous and glammed-up casino game on the planet. In fact, the game’s so cool that even the movies love to use its charm and vibe to create atmospheric stories and iconic cinema moments. We all know that James Bond, the legendary British secret agent 007, has been seen in Casino Royale as well in other Bond movies at Roulette table and there exist even a James Bond Roulette strategy, which you can read more about here. Over the years there have been several other movies that feature the roulette wheel to a lesser or greater extent. This article takes a trip down memory lane and relives the best of them. Take a break from online roulette and check out some of the coolest roulette movies of all time.
Casablanca (1942)
Casablanca move poster

Few films have captured the classic roulette casino thrill more perfectly than the legendary Casablanca, the 1942 blockbuster starring Humphrey Bogart and Ingrid Bergman. The famous roulette scene is only a sub plot of the movie but a very poignant one. During the war years Casablanca was the transit point for refugees wanting to go to America but the exit visas cost a packet.

Rick Blaine, played by Bogart, runs the hottest casino in Casablanca. He is approached by Annina, not played by Bergman, for advice. Annina and her husband, Jan, are newlyweds wanting to go to America. They do not have the money to buy the visas and Annina has been approached by a corrupt police officer who promises the documents for sexual favors. To avoid that Annina tell Blaine that Jan is staking his all at the roulette wheel in order to get hold of the required money, and that is when the famous roulette scene takes place.

Blaine goes to the roulette table to find Jan down to his last three chips. He asks Jan, “Have you tried 22 tonight?” Jan puts his last three chips on 22 and wins. After the croupier pushes the winning chips onto 22, Blaine tells Jan to leave them there. 22 wins again. The amount is sufficient to buy the exit visas. Blaine brusquely tells Jan “Cash it in and don’t come back.” Everyone knows that Blaine had the croupier rig the wheel so that 22 could win. This happens only in the movies. Do not expect it in real world or online casinos. IMDB

Run, Lola, Run (1998)
Run Lola Run Movie Poster

Shades of this scene from Casablanca can be felt in the 1998 movie Run Lola Run. This movie has three runs, which depict different alternatives of how the plot could unfold. The backdrop is that Lola’s criminal boyfriend Manni has lost DEM 100,000 and has 20 minutes to get hold of that cash. In one of the runs Lola enters a casino and buys a DEM 100 chip. She goes to a roulette table and places the chip on number 20. Lola wins, lets the bet ride and wins again. She now has DEM 129,600, more than what Manni needs. But when she meets Manni, he has already found the lost money, but plenty of other bizarre things have happened meanwhile. The roulette win is enough to pay off her boyfriend’s huge debts to a mob boss, and leave a cool 29,600 in pure profit. Such roulette wins are rare but not impossible and do happen from time to time – the odds 1369-to-1 for two consecutive singles on a European roulette table. IMDB

Indecent Proposal Movie Poster
Indecent proposal (1993)

The 1993 movie Indecent Proposal also has shades of Casablanca. It begins on a roulette table in Las Vegas. Childhood sweethearts David and Diana, now a married couple, need big money to finance a real estate project. So they travel to Las Vegas and place their entire stake on red and lose. That is the end of the roulette part and then the indecent proposal is made and accepted. In Casablanca the couple won at the roulette tables and the indecent proposal was turned down. IMDB

The Sting Movie Poster
The Sting(1973)
Theory that crime doesn’t pay, and although it’s fair to say that millions of dubious cash has been through a roulette reel, in the 1973 movie The Sting, crook Johnny Hooker (Robert Redford) skims a huge sum of cash using a roulette device, only to blow it all by betting on a rigged roulette table (the scammer gets scammed). Movie depicts the devious side of roulette gaming and it is a situation that every casino seeks to avoid. However, the scam is ultimately unsuccessful as Hooker decides to bet all his money on a fixed roulette game – all of his stolen profits are lost. IMDB
Daniel Deronda Movie Poster
Daniel Deronda (2002)
Actually, “Daniel Deronda” is a novel of the well-known author George Eliot that published it in 1876. Imagine how old this story is! The cinematography couldn’t pass by this sophisticated plot and it was casted in 2002. This is an intricate story of love, cruelty and gambling. The story centers on the protagonist Daniel Deronda (Hugh Dancy) and a beautiful woman Gwendolen (Romola Garai) who gambled a lot and consequently stayed without her father’s estate. IMDB
Casino Movie poster
Casino (1995)
The 1995 film Casino is a classic movie based on greed, money, power, deception and murder. This movie depicts the glitz and glamor of the gambling world and how it can be the destruction of everything. This movie was directed by Martin Scorsese and includes A-list actor Sharon Stone, Robert De Niro and Joe Pesci. While this movie is not specifically about roulette, it captures the various levels of casino gaming and it leaves you with a memorable impression. IMDB
13 Movie poster
13 (2010)
The 2010 film 13 depicts a number of different roulette variants. The main character is a young man who is in desperate need of money so his father can get the medical help he needs. The young man bet his life in a game of Russian roulette. The man luckily wins the bet and in return receives a large sum of cash. IMDB
Croupier movie poster
Croupier (1998)
In the 1998 movie Croupier, the main character is Jack Manfred, an author who is having trouble finishing his book. He then decides to become a roulette dealer at a casino and is sucked into the gambling world. Manfred falls in love with one of his regular players and he agrees to help his lover Jani pull off a casino heist. IMDB
South Park poster
South Park (1997– )
Although it’s not really a movie, Red Man’s Greed was a classic episode of South Park that focussed on the joys and perils of the roulette casinos. The town of South Park was facing demolition as the Native Americans re-claimed their lands, forcing them to hit the casino to get the $10,000 needed for the saving of the town. Of course, in true South Park style, they won the $10,000 needed but let it ride and lost! IMDB
Conclusion
In practically every movie that has a casino scene there will be roulette tables. But movies in which the game plays a part in the plot will be special to roulette lovers. Most of the classic roulette movie moments deliver the highs and lows of the game – but they also illustrate the classy style of roulette that never leaves the table, including online with the latest generation of 3D tables. You can even find your favourite roulette movie moments and live them out on the web with low-risk stake levels!