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Rounders [DVD] [1998]

45 customer reviews

Price: £3.48 & FREE Delivery in the UK on orders over £20. Details
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Product details

  • Actors: Matt Damon, Edward Norton, Gretchen Mol, John Malkovich, Paul Cicero
  • Directors: John Dahl
  • Writers: Brian Koppelman, David Levien
  • Producers: Bob Weinstein, Bobby Cohen, Christopher Goode, Harvey Weinstein, Joel Stillerman
  • Format: PAL
  • Language: English, Hebrew, Russian
  • Subtitles: English
  • Subtitles For The Hearing Impaired: English
  • Region: Region 2 (This DVD may not be viewable outside Europe. Read more about DVD formats.)
  • Aspect Ratio: 16:9 - 2.35:1
  • Number of discs: 1
  • Classification: 15
  • Studio: Buena Vista
  • DVD Release Date: 7 Jan. 2002
  • Run Time: 116 minutes
  • Average Customer Review: 4.2 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (45 customer reviews)
  • ASIN: B00005U1XG
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 40,117 in DVD & Blu-ray (See Top 100 in DVD & Blu-ray)

Reviews

Product Description

Master gambler Mike (Matt Damon) hangs up his poker visor after losing all his savings in a high-stakes game. Starting a new life at law school, he is dragged back into the gambling underworld by an ex-con friend (Edward Norton), who has gone in too deep with a ruthless Russian cardsharp (John Malkovich). Mike has to ply his old trade once more in an effort to secure a future for himself and his friend.

From Amazon.co.uk

A little drunk on its own arcane exotica as a gambling movie, Rounders is a film that takes us inside a world of high-stakes card players but falls short on such essentials as character development and relationships. Still, it is a real curiosity, written by a couple of guys (David Levien and Brian Koppelman) who appear to know something about the dark underbelly of card hustling for fun and profit. Matt Damon stars as a reluctant law student who can't put aside his subterranean career of playing poker and blackjack for big money. After he loses his post-grad nest egg to a weird Russian kingpin (John Malkovich)--and also loses his disgusted girlfriend (Gretchen Mol) in the process--Damon's character turns to an unreliable old buddy (Edward Norton) for a dangerous game of sharking wherever there happens to be a game underway: frat boys, cops, bad dudes, you name it. Norton appears to be living out every young actor's fantasy of re-creating Robert De Niro's prot! otypical head case in Martin Scorsese's Mean Streets, and while his performance is burdened by obvious quotation marks, his estimable talent still shines through. Damon's charm and intelligence bring some oomph to the curiously flat proceedings, and while his hushed, soul-bearing scenes with Martin Landau (as a law professor who takes a shine to the kid) seem gratuitous, they're still nice to watch. Behind all this is director John Dahl (Red Rock West), who is not exactly at the top of his game here but who brings his distinctive toughness to the crime-noir tone.--Tom Keogh, Amazon.com

Customer Reviews

4.2 out of 5 stars

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

11 of 12 people found the following review helpful By Sebastian Fernandez on 2 Jun. 2005
Format: DVD
I have watched this movie several times in the last few years, and have been playing Texas Hold'em for a similar amount of time. When this special edition came out, I knew I had to check it out; and I was not disappointed, since besides the great movie, it includes a nice collection of extras.
Mike (Damon) is a grinder that plays poker as if it was a job. He has used his skills to pay his way through law school by gambling day after day without falling outside the boundaries of his method. But now something clicked and he is making a run for it. He goes to the underground club of Teddy KGB (Malkovich), a man highly connected with the Russian mob, carrying along all his savings and trading them for three stacks of high society ($30,000) to try to pave his way to Vegas.
It seems that the advice of a friend will save him from his fate when Joey Knish (Turturro) tries to dissuade him from going for it, but Mike disregards the advice and takes his chances. When Mike doesn't follow his cardinal rule (title of this review), Teddy KGB busts him for all his money. Now he is so disappointed that he decides to quit the game, takes up a job working Joey's truck and promises his girlfriend not to gamble anymore. When Worm (Norton) an old friend from school comes out of jail, Mike is tempted to go for it again. The fact that Worm is a cheat and owes money to influential people just complicates things.
This movie presents an interesting tour of the world of gambling, and if you are interested in poker you will certainly like it. You will also get the chance to see several pros in action, in a few scenes of the movie and in the extras.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By pacopicopiedra on 12 Aug. 2009
Format: DVD
I have just rewatched Rounders after a giving it a break of a few years. Having learned a bit about poker since my last viewing, I wanted to see if I could get any kind of different perspective on the film, which I had previously already enjoyed.

The film is most praise-worthy for daring to include so much technical detail from a specialist field, rather than glossing over it - see "Wind" for an example of how directors happily leave out fundamentals for the sake of entertainment.

It's also irresistible for combining such strong talents as Ed Norton, John Turturro & John Malkovich - three names that readily grab my attention.

Matt Damon is well cast but is wooden even by his standards. The scenes with his girlfriend are pretty poor. And - note to screenplay writer - would such a great strategist be so dumb with his girlfriend? (who, for the record, was far too uptight for ANY guy).

Turturro is pretty great, as usual, but unfortunately appears in a fairly unimportant role. I love the name Knish - it makes me think of the Fun Lovin' Criminals.

Norton's character is well played but lacks depth. A supporting storyline providing more insight into his behaviour or redeeming the audience emotionally in some way could have made this a great Norton role.

Malkovich is very entertaining - never more so than with his "stick it in you" line - but I have to reluctantly conclude that he has created a caricature rather than a character, and this has to be one of his worst performances. Unfortunately this is no superhero movie with crazy characters. "Een my clarb I splatch the farking powt wayne oi warnt". It was a nice try, but if any Russian actually spoke like that, there surely would have been more to the Cold War.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on 4 Dec. 2002
Format: VHS Tape
This film reveals the important aspects of being a great poker player. It has a simple plot which involves Matt Damon's character, 'Mike McDermott', narrating throughout. There are constant references to World Class poker players such as Johnny Chan and Doyle Brunson which enhance your understanding of the game.
If you have an interest in the poker, you'll love this film. After watching it, I started to play "Texas Hold'em" and I've never regretted it.
Rounders is one of those films that you can watch over again - I know I have.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on 20 July 2004
Format: DVD
This is a film for the poker player. If you dont know how to play poker it can still be enjoyed but the poker players out there will feel the thrills a little more keenly. Rounders is a well researched film which gives a very good feel for the poker world, a little extreme perhaps, but the core emotions of the game are well portrayed. If you dont play poker and want to know what all the fuss is about this film might give you some idea. Rounders follows the fortunes of a law student(Damon)who plays poker to make money, going around to all the games in and around New York to earn the money to pay for his education. Through the course of the film we are brought along on quite a rollercoaster of changing fortunes and high stakes gambling but the film is consistantly focused around poker. Even if you dont play cards at all, this is still a cracking good yarn, and the performances by Norton and Damon are excellent. Definately worth a watch.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By PokerPro on 7 May 2004
Format: DVD
This Movie is more than just gambling and playing poker. The gambling is merely the backdrop for the ageless tale of the decisions that many young men must face as they grow into manhood. It has the classic decision of having to choose between love and friendship. Also, the decision that many of us have faced of taking on a profession in something that you love to do (poker) or doing what everyone else believes is the responsible thing to do (law).
While Mike Struggles with making these timeless decisions, he constantly find himself at odds with the seedy underbelly of the New York and New Jersey gambling scene. Threats of violence, tales of poker, and a cast of characters with a wide range of personalities make this movie a must SEE. Have Fun!
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