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A hotshot poker player tries to win a tournament in Vegas, but is fighting a losing battle with his personal problems.



(screenplay), (screenplay) | 1 more credit »
1 nomination. See more awards »



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Cast overview, first billed only:
Kenny Cau ...
Chinese Restaurant Waiter


In Las Vegas, Huck Cheever is a poker player, brilliant but also prone to let emotion take over. It's the week of the poker world series, and Huck must come up with the $10,000 entry fee, which he wins, loses, borrows, and loses - and even steals part of from Billie Offer, an earnest young woman who's new in town and who catches Huck's eye. By the time the tournament starts, Huck owes everyone. Complicating things is the arrival of Huck's father, whom Huck detests for having left his mother, a champion player in town to win. Can Huck learn to play poker the way he lives and to live the way he plays poker? Or is his only flush the sound of his life going down the toilet? Written by <>

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis


Change your game. Change your life. See more »


Drama | Romance | Sport

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated PG-13 for some language and sexual humor | See all certifications »



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Release Date:

4 May 2007 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Bem-vindo ao Jogo  »

Box Office


$55,000,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend:

$2,710,445 (USA) (4 May 2007)


$5,755,286 (USA) (29 June 2007)

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs


Sound Mix:


Aspect Ratio:

2.35 : 1
See  »

Did You Know?


When a hand of a pair of tens and a pair of fours is referred to as a Broderick Crawford, it was because actor Crawford frequently used the code "10-4" to end radio messages on his popular syndicated TV show, "Highway Patrol.' See more »


In the shot of 'Huck Cheever' riding his motorcycle at dawn (just before the big tournament) we see the famous Las Vegas Strip in the background. The Stratosphere tower is visible at the right of the screen, and to the left of that (south toward Center Strip), the very distinctive and slightly sloped roof line of Wynn Las Vegas can clearly be seen. The movie is set in 2003, but Wynn Las Vegas was not completed until 2005. See more »


Pawnbroker: You work this hard at your day job?
See more »

Crazy Credits

After the credits there is a scene where Ready Eddie and Lester (the man with breast implants) argue over whether Lester actually spent an entire month in the bathroom or not. As the current month has thirty-one days and not just thirty. They soon begin to discuss whether the month of August has either thirty or thirty-one days, which soon leads them to a double-or-nothing wager over the fact. See more »


References Highway Patrol (1955) See more »


They Ain't Got 'Em All
Written by John Scott Sherrill
Produced by Don Was
Performed by Kris Kristofferson
Kris Kristofferson appears courtesy of New West Records
See more »

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User Reviews

Dull, sleepy story of poker players
19 March 2008 | by (Anywheresville, USA) – See all my reviews

I could tell right off this was a terrible movie (even the credits are boring), but the real shocker is that it was directed by the guy that made "LA Confidential" -- one of the very best films of the last decade or so -- and features Robert Duvall, one of the best actors of our generation. Yet, as in so many limp forgettable films, the problem is...THE SCRIPT. The story is utterly without merit, and there was no reason to tell it, except that it tries to exploit the recent fascination with big-time poker tournaments.

Unfortunately, poker (which is probably quite interesting and challenging to play) is wretchedly boring to WATCH since winning depends in part on having a BLANK ("poker")face. The only cathartic part is thousands and even millions at are stake, but otherwise, its no more interesting to watch than gin rummy or even your granny's bingo night at church.

Huck (yes short for "Huckleberry") Cheever, a young poker player in Las Vegas with no other job or means of employment. Not a very good player, as he is always broke or losing at the last minute. It becomes painfully obvious that that Huck really is a GAMBLING ADDICT, so addicted that he repeatedly blows money he needs to pay to get into the Big Game, money he owes other people...even money he STEALS from the innocent girl he is dating.

That's not a clever, talented poker player on the rise -- that's a pathetic addict who is about two steps from life in the gutter. We are supposed to think Hank (who is losing stupidly, left & right) is a brilliant world-class player. Hank's dad, L.C. Cheever (Duvall, excellent as always, even in a thankless role) is quite obviously a much better, craftier player.

There is a very slight romance with Billie, a wannabe lounge singer, played by Drew Barrymore. She can be very charming, but here she seems miscast and shrewish as she lays into the messed up Huck about his life. The romantic parts are leaden and devoid of romantic charm or even erotic appeal (there's no nudity or sex) since Bana and Barrymore have zero chemistry together.

Looking back to what I thought the first time I saw Bana in "The Hulk", he is handsome, but really does not have acting talent. He probably rates off the charts with female audience testers, but simply cannot carry a film. I wish there was some way to tell filmmakers that you need MORE than a pretty face or a ripped body to connect with the audience.

The film wraps up with Huck and Pops at The Big Poker tournament, the only exciting aspect of which is that the prize is several million dollars. (I understand there are also cameos by a number of genuine poker champions; I wouldn't know.)Huck throws the game -- and several million bucks -- to his dad. WHY???? There is nothing up to this point to demonstrate that L.C., a two time champ, couldn't deal with losing, or that he needed the money (for an operation or something). In fact, it's Hank who is poor and screwed up, and losing his (furniture-less but posh) home. It's Hank who really needed the win, so he could continue his career as a first rank player.

The whole film would have made more sense if the father threw the game...helping his son for the first time, and moving aside for the next generation (and perhaps if Hank thought he won for real, but then realized his father's "gift"). But that ain't this film. Hank's decision makes no sense, and there is no reason to believe that the father-son relationship is really healed.

Heck, even though the movie ends with Hank and Billie smooching, anyone with half a brain quickly realizes Hank will probably be rifling through Billie's purse by midnight, and screwing around behind her back, and that this is no romance: this is a tragedy for poor naive Billie. And how come nobody remotely suggests that Hank (and some of the other idiot gambling addicts in the film, including a humorous lunkhead who has had BREAST IMPLANTS to try and win a bet) have even thought about getting help for their tragic, destructive behavior.

So aside from being about as exciting as a hygiene class filmstrip, the movie doesn't make much sense and offers appallingly bad advice (keep gambling, keep taking money from innocent people, do anything to win, etc.).

It's a loser, that much is for sure. In conclusion: presumably nobody saw it at the box office, so no $$ loss there, but this is not even worth a rental and for god's sake, do not purchase it, even on clearance (where it is destined to end up)...not even your most poker-lovin' pals will tolerate it.

6 of 9 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

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