’21′ – a great blackjack movie

Trailer for 21.

When you play games like blackjack online, they appear to be quite simple at first – and you may think there isn’t much you can do to influence the results save for deciding to hit or stand. However, the more you play, the more you’ll discover different strategies like doubling down, splitting, and when and how to use them. Some people might tell you that blackjack is just a game of luck, but most pros will disagree. Why? Well, they think that if you’re skilled and sharp enough, you’ll be able to count cards in blackjack and predict what kind of cards in the dealer’s deck. Then you’ll know when to hit, stand or split (this is by the way very frowned upon in all Vegas casinos – but it’s not illegal). As we all know poker is one of the most popular card games in the world, but since the movie 21 came out, players seem to have developed a new found interest in blackjack. However, not everyone can afford a trip to Vegas just to play a few rounds of this game. Nowadays, players have the choice to play blackjack online if they feel they’re not ready yet for the real life blackjack table!

21 that has become something of a cult view for players. The film, starring , was released in 2008 and tells a story loosely based on truth – the story of a group of MIT students who ripped off the casinos through card counting at blackjack. The film starts with MIT maths student, Ben Campbell (), at an interview for a scholarship at Harvard Medical School, where he’s been asked to ‘dazzle’ the director to win his place.

Campbell then tells his story of being recruited by MIT college professor, Mickey Rosa (Spacey), who gathers together a group of brilliant students to help him win thousands through card counting at blackjack. They train in two groups – “spotters” who count the cards while placing minimum bets and send signals to “big players” when it’s the right moment to place big bets.

In the film, Campbell is a reluctant participant and the team goes through an initial high because of their success before different rivalries and jealousies spark dissolution within the team. The action is fast-paced and full of intrigue as you don’t know which characters are working together or not, and the problems spill over into their academic lives too. The film ends with the scene of Campbell back in the interview room with a director of Harvard Medical School appearing to have been dazzled by his tale.

The film used the book Bringing Down the House by Ben Mezrich (2003) as inspiration. The book was supposed to be the account of the real MIT Blackjack Team, although those people who are portrayed in the book have contested many of the episodes described in it.

21 is a great casino heist movie and definitely worth a watch if you’re a casino movie fan. Check out other casino movies such Ocean’s 11, Croupier, Rounders and our all time favourite; Casino Royale!

Rating: 4 out of 5


Jordan is the Editor-in-Chief at imediamonkey®. He set up the website in 2009 and has been at the helm ever since.

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