The movie industry takes inspiration from quite literally anything- be it a chocolate bar, a Big Fish or even a cunning fox. It’s a marvel what the movie industry can recreate from simple entities that make up our world. With this in mind, does it come as a surprise that something as riveting as Casino’s would have such a powerful impact on the movie industry? The answer is, not really. But this still leaves us wondering; how?
History of Casinos
For hundreds or thousands of years, people have been gambling in one way or another. It’s part of our shared human experience.
Humans have always loved to gamble, as evidenced by the earliest known dice found in Egypt and the oldest known games of luck found in ancient China, as well as images on Greek and Roman ceramics that show placing bets on animal fights was prevalent and animals were bred specifically for that reason.
As the story of evolution kept unfolding, so did the story of gambling. It was in the 17th century that the first casinos or gambling halls were formed in Italy, with the establishment of the Ridotto in Venice in 1638 providing a regulated gaming environment. Centuries passed and the world of casinos only kept evolving- starting with land based casinos that became a landmark for places like Las Vegas and stretching out to the digital sphere with the birth of online casinos that have become a rather dominant industry in this day and age.
Casinos: An Unmatched Cinematic Trope
In cinema, a trope is anything that suggests a deeper meaning than the one that is explicitly stated. Traits, which convey an idea to the spectator, are thematic narrative methods used in films. They can be as basic as a physical object or as complicated as a series of actions, all of which have symbolic or referential significance.
Gambling has been a popular kind of pleasure for people of all ages since the dawn of recorded history, and casinos have long been the hub of all that euphoria. Flavour and refinement are the hallmarks of this rich industry. Gamblers love the thrill that real money casinos bring along with them. There are plenty of games to be played for massive winnings with the help of lady luck, all brought together with a mysterious, glamorous exterior that is alluring to anyone who responds to the casino’s call.
Filmmakers are drawn to the ambience a casino creates. It adds another layer of intrigue to movies and television shows which they are creating. There’s plenty of room for interpretation when a filmmaker implants the casino trope into their masterpiece. The casino trope adds elaborate elements of deceit, great fortune and luck to the stories it features in.
Casino Movies Always Seem to be Great Hits
For aspiring Hollywood actors, exceptional movies that feature casinos may be a stepping stone to further success in the industry. This film told the story of an organised group of Las Vegas casino burglars. In 1960, the film was originally released, featuring a slew of legendary artists from the era, including Frank Sinatra and Dean Martin. The 2001 recreation of this film was a massive success. It featured big-time actors like Brad Pitt, Julia Roberts and George Clooney in the lead roles. The film was a huge hit. Ocean’s 12 and 13 were both made into films, which showcases what a positive influence casino’s have had on both the movie industry and the actors involved. Take George Clooney for example. He is most known for his depiction of Danny Ocean, a “gentleman thief,” in the Ocean’s trilogy (Ocean’s 11, 12, 13).
We haven’t even mentioned the infamous James Bond franchise. Multiple films from this well-loved franchise have scenes which feature the suave and ever-so-classy 007 participating in gambling games at casinos. Somehow, Bond almost always seems to have the upper hand when playing at a Casino, which is fascinating to audience members. On top of this, many of the actors who have played Bond over the years; such as Pierce Brosnan, Daniel Craig and Sean Connery owe a lot of their fame to this franchise.
Casinos are Intriguing to the Public Eye
Anyone inexperienced with casino games may feel that winning is the norm while playing poker, slots, roulette and various other popular casino games. This is not the case. The reason for this is because the main protagonists in gambling movies are depicted as always victorious and somehow manage to leave the playing table with an epic amount of cash.
Using actors to play casino games as though gambling is a game based on skill is one method that gambling movies favourably influence the public’s perceptions of casino games. Some of the most well-known espionage flicks, like James Bond for example, have scenes in which one of the major characters plays blackjack, poker, or dice and wins against the other players.
It’s easy to get the impression that anybody can conquer games of chance if they practise and improve their skills. While it is possible to improve your chances of winning these games by enhancing particular skills, it is not to the level depicted in some casino films..