This list was originally published with details and analysis here.
Life's a Gamble
Jack Manfred is an aspiring writer who to make ends meet, takes a job as a croupier. Jack remains an observer, knowing that everything in life is a gamble and that gamblers are born to lose. Inevitably, he gets sucked into the world of the casino which takes its toll on his relationships and the novel he is writing.
Known for the Michael Caine led crime classic Get Carter (which I haven’t seen yet), Mike Hodges’ nineties Croupier is as lustrous as movies come. Starring Clive Owen as our titular croupier (a casino dealer to the less intellectual of us) otherwise named Jack Manfred, Croupier details the life and soul of a character tormented and disinterested by all that come across him. Jack wants to finish his novel and through some riveting narration by the man himself, it becomes apparent (or seems to be) that the story we are watching is the very same story Jack, or Jake as the protagonist in his novel is named, is writing. Croupier is a devilish film. It analyses a character whose motivation…
Clive Owen was touted a couple of years ago as a possible 007. Here we get to see plenty of him in a tuxedo as a talented croupier in a London casino, but as James Bond? I think not. This isn't however a film where Owen plays the action hero as this is more an insight into the nocturnal nightlife of the gambler and the addictive nature of games of chance.
Mike Hodges of Get Carter fame directed this one. Full of interior monologues from protagonist Jack (Owen) who plays a writer moonlighting as a croupier, this is a neo-noir that does have a quality script that draws you in. Owen is detached but strangely compelling as the casino employee…
Welcome back Jack, to the house of addiction.
It's easy to see why Clive Owen was once rumored to be the next James Bond. Here he plays Jack, a struggling writer who's working as a croupier at a casino, the farthest thing from being a spy and yet he still displays the characteristics we'd associate with 007. It also feels like a warm up for Sin City, as this neo-noir has a running voice over from Owen from beginning to end. This one is in third person however as we're inside his head as he's writing a book about his experiences.
It's so good that I just jizzed thinking about it.
This movie is an abomination.
I really don't have much of anything positive to say about it, but I hope I explain why.
Let me get a few of the sillier complaints (and snark) out of the way. Clive Owen has blonde hair for a while in this film. It looks disgusting. Not disgusting in a retroactive way, it is gross now, and it would have been gross in 1998 when the movie came out. In the film Owen wears suspenders, a trenchcoat, and a hat that looks like something a Hasidic Jew might wear. He dresses like Boy George, if he was a member of Dixie Midnight Runners, 15 years after they were popular.
Ok, I'm glad to have…
I have been watching some real crap recently so this was a classy change of pace. Clive Owen plays an aspiring writer who takes a job at a casino which serves as a source of inspiration. Much to the frustration of his live in girlfriend his obsession over the job leads him into romantic encounters with other women and later getting caught up in a plan to rob the place. Its a slow film and one could even say that not much of note happens in it but superior writing and atmosphere made this rather great. I love the attention given to the techniques and procedures of casino, reminiscent of the underseen Dinner Rush a film in which the going ons and character of the restaurant are given as much emphasis as the people inside it.
In full on youtube.
An intoxicating look into the seedy underbelly of YOU.
That blond dye job, like the rest of Hodges' aesthetic, belongs in a 1980s made-for-tv movie.
This was only on my queue because of Clive Owen but it was a lot more enjoyable than I expected. All of the performances were quite good and it had a lot of fun energy to it.
This review reportedly contains spoilers. I can handle the truth.
So, I recently came to the conclusion that I've drifted too far ashore from the encyclopedic, all-consuming film fan I used to be before embarking on the journey of creating my own content along with my brother... and I've decided to do something about it.
That something: I'm going to start watching films on a regular basis again, to allow myself to be taken into and transported by these stories as I did as a young man and (possibly) reinvigorate my own stalling passion for cinematic storytelling (though I am content to merely rediscover my love of the medium, no-strings-attached).
So, with this goal in mind, I've decided to sit down and actually start watching, at random, the films that…
Thoughts while watching Croupier:
-Looks a little dated, but hopefully the content is good
-I hope there isn't this much voiceover throughout
-Man, Clive Owen looks trashy with blond hair
-Wow, that old laptop is terrifying. Looks like it belongs in a Cronenberg movie
-They spent a disproportionate amount of their budget on fill lights
-Ugh, God, voiceover. Stop.
-The book he's writing sounds really terrible
-I was enjoying it until they brought back the voiceover
-Being a male gigolo would be a terrible job.
-At least I hope that guy is a gigolo.
-Wow, that character totally disappeared for an hour
-Oh, I thought that was the end
-So. Much. Voiceover!!!!!!!
-Ah, it wasn't…
Clive Owen was like the coolest guy in the world at one point, wasn't he?
As if J.D. Salinger wrote a noir film. You can see why people wanted Clive Owen to be the next James Bond at the time.
Copying Caleb's Scavenger Hunt
Film no. 1
A movie about gambling.
Croupier proved an excellent film to start this unabashedly plagiarized scavenger hunt. Expertly edited, succinct, and screaming late 90s indie movie from the opening take, Clive Owen's coming out party was unexpectedly enjoyable.
. Croupier was certainly a divergence for director Mike Hodges at the time. Having bounced between pulp action dramas and short lived tv series directorial stints, Croupier was quite possibly meant to be his opus, or, at the very least, his one last shot. Cinematically, 1998 was a time of shifting from glossy, big budgeted, high profile gangster and casino flicks, to the more introspective personal indie flicks embraced by the early 2000s scene. Between the…
I never knew the meaning of the word Croupier before watching this.
Jokes apart, a pretty entertaining movie on the whole. Owen promised so much as a actor. The setting was good as was the voice over.
Overall a decent flick. One time watchable.
Every Film Receiving Votes in Sight & Sound's 2012 Critic and Director Polls for the Greatest Films of All Time
Every ten years, Sight & Sound conducts a poll for the greatest films of all time. For the 2012 edition, 846…
Every ten years, British film magazine "Sight & Sound" polls critics and directors from around the world to determine the greatest…