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Rounders (1998)

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A young, reformed gambler must return to playing big stakes poker to help a friend pay off loan sharks, while balancing his relationship with his girlfriend and his commitments to law school.

Director:

John Dahl
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Popularity
3,552 ( 229)
1 win & 1 nomination. See more awards »

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Plot unknown. A sequel to the 1998 film 'Rounders'.

Director: John Dahl
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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Matt Damon ... Mike McDermott
Gretchen Mol ... Jo
John Malkovich ... Teddy KGB
Paul Cicero Paul Cicero ... Russian Thug
Ray Iannicelli ... Kenny
John Turturro ... Joey Knish
Merwin Goldsmith ... Sy
Sonny Zito Sonny Zito ... Tony
Josh Mostel ... Zagosh
Mal Z. Lawrence ... Irving
Lenny Clarke ... Savino
Peter Yoshida Peter Yoshida ... Henry Lin
Jay Boryea Jay Boryea ... Russian Thug #2
Lenny Venito ... Moogie
Martin Landau ... Abe Petrovsky
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Storyline

John Dahl directed this exploration of New York private clubs devoted to high-stakes poker, with first-person narration from the film's central figure, law student Mike McDermott (Matt Damon), who loses his entire savings to Russian club owner Teddy KGB (John Malkovich). Mike then turns away from cards, devoting his attentions to his law studies and his live-in girlfriend Jo (Gretchen Mol), who's concerned when Mike's former gambling buddy Worm (Edward Norton) is released from prison. She has good reason to worry, since it takes Worm only a matter of minutes to draw Mike back into poker action. When she learns Mike has returned to the poker clubs, she moves out, and Mike begins to lose interest in his studies. Worm has a prison debt, and the threatening Grama (Michael Rispoli) wants the money. Mike not only indulges the irresponsible Worm, he gets involved in Worm's debts. When Grama demands $15,000 on a five-day deadline, the two buddies go into high gear with a non-stop, no-sleep ...

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

In The Game Of Life... Play The Cards You're Dealt See more »

Genres:

Crime | Drama

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated R for pervasive strong language, some sexuality and brief drug use | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Details

Official Sites:

Official Facebook | Official site

Country:

USA

Language:

English | Hebrew | Russian

Release Date:

11 September 1998 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Apuesta final See more »

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Box Office

Budget:

$12,000,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend USA:

$8,459,126, 13 September 1998

Gross USA:

$22,912,409

Cumulative Worldwide Gross:

$22,912,409
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Production Co:

Miramax, Spanky Pictures See more »
Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Dolby Digital | SDDS

Color:

Color

Aspect Ratio:

2.35 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

It is said in the movie that Matt Damons characters favourite actor is Clint Eastwood, Eastwood later directed Damon in Hereafter released in 2011. See more »

Goofs

When Worm is waiting for Mike outside Mike's apartment, stickers on the window say "NO ENUS" with both words centered. "ENUS" should have been shifted to the right, as the original word "MENUS" would probably have been centered when the letters were originally applied. See more »

Quotes

Professor Petrovsky: [during Moot Court] Mr. McDermott, perhaps we can begin now.
Mike McDermott: I'm so sorry I'm late
Judge Marinacci: Come to order in the matter of Slater v. New York State Higher Education Services.The facts have been stipulated, the briefs have been read. Lead counsel for plaintiff, Mr. McDermott, please proceed with oral arguments now. If that is convenient for you
Mike McDermott: [sensing the judges are irritated that he disrespected them by not arriving on time] Yes, it is, and again, I'm sorry that I'm late. The case which controls the ...
[...]
See more »

Connections

Referenced in Richard Roeper & the Movies: Iron Man 2 (2010) See more »

Soundtracks

Windows
Written by Jim Smith & Greg Humphreys
Performed by Hobex
Courtesy of Slash Records
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

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User Reviews

 
One of the most widely underrated movies of our time
5 January 2005 | by ironman0304manutdSee all my reviews

Rounders is I believe, one of the most widely underrated movies of our time.

I first saw this movie as it was a 'bonus DVD' thrown in for free with my DVD player back in 2000, so naturally I didn't expect much (as the other bonus DVD's were very mediocre), but what I found was a very enjoyable movie.

At that stage in my life, I had only played a little poker as a child growing up, and never 'Texas Hold'em' so to be honest, a lot of the terminology went 'over my head', but even so, the film became an instant favorite of mine purely because of the performances.

The film has so much star power, and yet none of the fine actors try to 'steal' scenes. Damon, Norton, Malkovich, Landau ... and then the fine supporting cast of Turturro, Jansen, and Mol.

In fact, there is a scene with Martin Landau and Matt Damon that is perhaps one of the most beautiful performances I have seen in a long time between two very fine actors.

So even if you're not a poker player, the story is tighter than a lot of Hollywood 'pop fluff' and the performances alone can sell the film as an enjoyable movie capable of multiple viewings.

But ... if you start playing poker and get really into what they are talking about, and reading about poker theory (like Doyle Brunson's book Super System) then the movie moves up to a whole different level.

A lot of the time, Hollywood will attempt to cover a specialized error, and usually fail, or at best only partially succeed, whereas Rounders managed to get everything 'spot on', just look at the US DVD, it has a commentary track from 4 World Champion Poker players, if that's not a stamp of approval then I don't know what is.

When you factor in how the film can be enjoyed by someone who has little to no idea about Poker (as I did when I first saw the film) just because of the tight story and stellar performances and also be 'immortalized' by poker enthusiasts as the best movie ever made on the subject (and truth be told, a big reason why the World Series of Poker has been doubling it's entries year after year) ... what you have here is a true gem that works on so many levels and what I believe is, as I said initially, one of the most widely underrated movies of our time.


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