Directors: Anna Boden, Ryan Fleck
Talent: Ben Mendelsohn, Ryan Reynolds, Yvonne Landry, Anthony Howard
Release Date: 9th October 2015
When down on his luck gambling addict Gerry (Mendelsohn) meets the slick talking, freewheeling Curtis (Reynolds) at a poker tournament, the pair of mismatched serial gamblers embark to a road trip in search of a fabled tournament in New Orleans.
In a film about gambling, it’s a genuine oddity that the stakes never appear to be all that high. Mendelsohn may be flawless in his portrayal of a deeply flawed, fatigued and almost entirely beaten specimen of humanity, but the rest of the film just doesn’t rise to meet this performance. The pace is so oddly gentle, that it never really feels like anybody’s on the verge of losing anything.
But with subtly slick direction and a killer delta blues soundtrack, this journey of two misfits from casinos to pool-halls to racetracks becomes an easy, enjoyable watch, if not a particularly engaging or memorable one.
Words: Bernard O’Rourke