21

Film

Drama

migrate.41936.jpg

Time Out rating:

<strong>Rating: </strong><span class='lf-avgRating'>2</span>/5

User ratings:

<strong>Rating: </strong><span class='lf-avgRating'>3</span>/5
Rate this
 

Time Out says

Posted: Tue Apr 8 2008

Based on the true story of a bunch of MIT geeks who hit Las Vegas for a winning run on the blackjack tables before casino security cottoned on, this is a great idea for a movie but not a great movie.

In essence, it adheres to the evergreen guys-on-a-mission template, with hard-up undergrad, Ben (Jim Sturgess, lightweight but passable) fearing he’ll be priced out of Harvard Medical School. He is lured by maths professor Rosa (Kevin Spacey, urbane but hokey) into a guerrilla unit of his best students ready to take on the baize tables: his argument is that twenty-one is a simple game, and by remembering which cards have been dealt, you give yourself a better chance of knowing when to fold or take a chance.

Prospects look good for the rest of the picture at this stage, but disappointment takes over with the realisation it’s all being pitched to a pre-teen audience, smoothing out potentially juicy moral dilemmas and sanitising the grown-up throb of the Vegas experience into anodyne glitz.

Actually, there’s something rather pernicious in the way the film drools over the towering chips, palatial suites and incipient gambling fever, as if to tantalise viewers way too young to be admitted to these very establishments; all of which hardly keeps us on-message that friendship’s a greater prize than cash alone. The whizzo-conceit and slick visual bling do give it an undeniably diverting buzz, yet the movie’s cautionary formula shows its hand way before the clunky final reel.

Users say

0
<strong>Rating: </strong><span class='lf-avgRating'>0</span>/5

Average User Rating

3.8 / 5

Rating Breakdown

  • 5 star:10
  • 4 star:3
  • 3 star:5
  • 2 star:2
  • 1 star:0
LiveReviews|36
1 person listening
deeko

this film does not live up to the hype at all. It's like a 'made for tv' film, the acting is average, the script should be much better. The people who love this film will be the under 16s and have not seen the cooler, casino, even oceans 11 was far better. Based on a true story about Asian-americans geek students, turned in to a film for white middle class americans...sad.

Ian S

Starts quite predictably and badly and then slowly but surely degeneraqtes into the drivel that it actually is. Entertaining in some ways but its trivial and ridiculous plot expects too much of the imagination (assuming an IQ of over 10). Avoid - though could be a laugh if drunk/drugged enough.

Mike Buck

I enjoyed this film, ok its not the greatest movie ever made, but it was well acted, Kevin Spacey being his excellent self. It has a massive Oceans 11 feeling to it, which isn't a bad thing, When it comes down to it, everyone will have their own opinion on films. What I like i'm sure some people will hate and visa versa, go and watch it, I enjoyed it.

Mike Buck

I enjoyed this film, ok its not the greatest movie ever made, but it was well acted, Kevin Spacey being his excellent self. It has a massive Oceans 11 feeling to it, which isn't a bad thing, When it comes down to it, everyone will have their own opinion on films. What I like i'm sure some people will hate and visa versa, go and watch it, I enjoyed it.

mel

This has to be the best film i have seen in ages! im only 16 so cant go to the casoins..yet ;) but it sure made me want to. Very smart and exciting film! i would go watch it again but i dont have the money :(..but WELL worth going to see it!

mel

This has to be the best film i have seen in ages! im only 16 so cant go to the casoins..yet ;) but it sure made me want to. Very smart and exciting film! i would go watch it again but i dont have the money :(..but WELL worth going to see it!

Les Molloy

OMIGOD, Time Out London has done it again. Not so much a listings magazine, giving us informative reviews, but more a Roget's Theasaurus and please excuse me Ed if I have spelt and grammartised that wrong! At least I now know what pernicious means! Oh yeah, the film. Casino movies are always good especially if you come from, or live in, a money driven capitalist economy. Money for nothing or for simply adding together pus one or minus one is a good job if you canb get it. Actually with, or without, the assistance Professor Rossa I might give it go. London Clubs International, get ready 'coz here I come!!!! I enjoyed the film.

xD

I thought the film was really good...And i didnt expect that to happen at the end ! XD...worth watching....It is very smart how they did it ...and its amazing that it is a true story

xD

I thought the film was really good...And i didnt expect that to happen at the end ! XD...worth watching....It is very smart how they did it ...and its amazing that it is a true story

Dani

Amazing film. It was fascinating the whole way through. The only slightly bad thing, it was a tad too long. There were a few bits that could have been cut out. But other than that fantastic! Best film i have seen in a while.

Dani

Amazing film. It was fascinating the whole way through. The only slightly bad thing, it was a tad too long. There were a few bits that could have been cut out. But other than that fantastic! Best film i have seen in a while.

Ross

This was complete pants. It was obvious and un-thought out. I sat there watching it hoping it would get better, but to no avail! Left after about an hour before I turned to stone with boredom.

Dave

This film was awesome! loved it! would definetly go see it again. well good!

Dave

This film was awesome! loved it! would definetly go see it again. well good!

usman khawaja

can i clarify i have no intention of dignifying a post which uses 4 letter words with a response lolz the rejoinder asking some one to shut up was not mine but posted by ? TIMEOUT -LOLZ maybe that is there strategy of dealing with imbeciles and spam my compliments and regards

iain

a good and easy to watch film, though no where near a classic. not sure about sturgess in the lead role, a bit weak for me, but spacey puts in another fine performance as the dodgy professer.

PowerJen

a story about young inteligent uni students tryna make some extra cash by winning at gambeling by counting cards, a basic storyline with an bovious twist at the end, if your wanting an easy to watch film then go see, however if your looking for something with a little more excitement and intrigue, not recommended.

Rebecca

I have quite clearly missed something here because basically, this was the worst film that I have ever paid to see. It was not even good enough to be purely mindless, escapist entertainment. Not even cheesy, not even so bad that it was funny - just bad. Awful, awful, awful. Absolutely nothing redeeming about it at all. If I had not paid £8.50 to see it I would have left after the first 10 minutes - infact no after the first 2 minutes - the intro (which was basically just a poor trailer for the whole film with a dodgy, cringy voice over and slow motion montage) being one of the worst things about it. Please people do not waste your money - go to the pub instead, go see your gran - anything but this. I would give it minus 5 stars if Time Out did not insist that you must give it at least 1.

levin

this ones really good and entertaining..much beta than the other one(pathology) which i watched today...has got all the elements in it,love,sex,passion,myestry,,,etc...i think its worth watching

levin

this ones really good and entertaining..much beta than the other one(pathology) which i watched today...has got all the elements in it,love,sex,passion,myestry,,,etc...i think its worth watching

usman khawaja

gambling was never so easy as in this instant formula where counting cards can make you a millionaire in a weekend ,and sturgess as an MIT inmate establishes that in a few weeks with the help of a morally ambiguous professor ,but the loopholes in the script are obvious -no one questions too hard as to where they disappear every week-no one ever sees them in the opulent vulgarity of vegas ,a tasteless resort filled with similar bourgeois east coast yanks,vegas looks like just the cheap replica of a secondary european city with its customary neon shots and obligatory casino shots and plush green tables, sturgess tries hard to impress even in a mimcry in front of a toilet mirror ,but the only time any humour excites you is the reference to rain man and cruise -hoffman in similar tones. other than that the lead girl is pretty and they frolic in bed too-so you will not be disappointed, spacey disappoints and he is a mean villain here with no character development -i wonder why he took this monotonous role,and the rest of the cast are sturgess class mates and buddies who are quite dumb and developing a robot as a research project , the cliched disaster strikes -sturgess is on the brink of destruction ,the sympathetic ,loving mum arrives ,and then everything goes hunky dory ,but .. there is a really neat twist to the finale and that makes the movie woth watching a caper that works half way with average acting and some good dialogue -but nothing to commit to memory and no artistic pretensions , this takes itself not too seriously and partly suceeds for that very reason ,the audience get what they expect and that is being earnest

Sam

I saw this film yesterday and i would recommend it to anyone. It has a great story line to it and it keeps you hooked. You dont even have to like cards and gambling to watch it. I really liked this film overall.

Sam

I saw this film yesterday and i would recommend it to anyone. It has a great story line to it and it keeps you hooked. You dont even have to like cards and gambling to watch it. I really liked this film overall.

Paul Cook

A good stroy, no oscars, but it will earn enough for Kate Bosworth to buy a couple of meals and a new bucket.

Noel

Never seen better! It really is an awsome movie and a must see!

Noel

Never seen better! It really is an awsome movie and a must see!

Fred Quimby

Saw this film last year at Cannes film festival. It was called 34 originally and starred Kevin Costner as a recovering crack whore. This remake has subtle similarities but lacks the wit and pathos of the original. 6/10