The Gambler

Critics Consensus

Well-paced and reasonably entertaining in its own right, The Gambler still suffers from comparisons to the James Caan classic that inspired it.



Total Count: 141


Audience Score

User Ratings: 23,847
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Movie Info

Jim Bennett (Academy Award (R)-nominee Mark Wahlberg) is a risk taker. Both an English professor and a high-stakes gambler, Bennett bets it all when he borrows from a gangster (Michael Kenneth Williams) and offers his own life as collateral. Always one step ahead, Bennett pits his creditor against the operator of a gambling ring (Alvin Ing) and leaves his dysfunctional relationship with his wealthy mother (Academy Award (R)-winner Jessica Lange) in his wake. He plays both sides, immersing himself in an illicit, underground world while garnering the attention of Frank (John Goodman), a loan shark with a paternal interest in Bennett's future. As his relationship with a student (Brie Larson) deepens, Bennett must take the ultimate risk for a second chance... (C) Paramount


Mark Wahlberg
as Jim Bennett
Brie Larson
as Amy Phillips
Anthony Kelley
as Lamar Allen
Steve Park
as Number 2
Chil Kong
as Blackjack Dealer #1
Davone McDonald
as Neville's Muscle
Amin Joseph
as Neville's Bookkeeper
Cjon Saulsberry
as Neville's Posse
Teebone Mitchell
as Neville's Posse
Alvin Ing
as Mister Lee
Karen Ritchie
as Blackjack Dealer #2
Tina Wang
as Roulette Croupier
Josiah Blount
as Nebbishy Student
Shakira Ja'nai Paye
as Questioning Student
Melanie McComb
as Mouthy Student
Andre Braugher
as Dean Fuller
Chanon Finley
as Pole Dancer
Raquel Pomplun
as Bottle Service Girl
Mattie Hawkinson
as Wide Eyed Student
James Wellington
as Indian Casino Dealer
Carlos L. Smith
as Indian Casino Ranchero
Steven Fisher
as Indian Casino Gambler #1
Henry Penzi
as Indian Casino Gambler #2
Steve Kim
as Mister Lee's Heavy #1
Simon Rhee
as Mister Lee's Heavy #2
Leland Orser
as Larry Jones
Todd Tetreault
as ROTC Squad Leader
Trevor Denman
as Horse Race Announcer
Jessika Van
as Sports Bar Waitress
Mike Rylander
as Game Announcer
Marques Johnson
as Game Color Man
Mark Schotz
as Assistant Basketball Coach
Michael Fisher
as Basketball Coach
Kent Avenido
as Gambling Den Owner
Brian Woods
as Referee
Marc Abbink
as Press Member
Stephen Woo
as Karaoke Singer
Rio Ahn
as Korean Pit Boss
as Student
Greg Duncan
as Security Consultant
Jason Her
as Radio Host
Kelly Bacon
as High-Fiving Court Fan
Rex Hindrichs
as Donovan Cham (Wildcats Player)
Jahmilla Jackson
as Supporting
Case Lawyer
as Gambler Ken
Stephen Choi
as Black Jack Dealer
Daniel Mitchell
as Jim's Dad
Lawannah Ann Curry
as Upscale Gambler
Denise J. Saucedo
as Posse (Janet Mc)
Nicki Dion
as Student
Micah Taylor West
as Female Basketball Player
Moses Yim
as Upscale Gambler
Jonathan Gatz
as Screaming Fan
Alex Gregory
as Basketball Player
Dawayne Jordan
as Basketball Fan
Anita Liao
as Casino Hostess
Hanna Messick
as Cheongsam Girl
TJ Nibbio
as Basketball Fan
Justin Ryan
as Basketball Fan
Iain Sandison
as Bookstore Guy
Joseph Steven
as Funeral Priest
Eric Bryan Stone
as Basketball Player
Steven J. Wong
as Mr. Mahjong
Jen Yim
as Showgirl
Teazz Yung
as Supporting
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News & Interviews for The Gambler

Critic Reviews for The Gambler

All Critics (141) | Top Critics (38) | Fresh (61) | Rotten (80)

  • Mark Wahlberg is always a physically articulate actor; here he wrings despair and disillusionment from every beaten-down gesture, every curt exchange.

    Jan 23, 2015 | Rating: 4/5 | Full Review…

    Wendy Ide

    Times (UK)
    Top Critic
  • The Gambler ... has become an advert for gambling. You couldn't make it up.

    Jan 23, 2015 | Rating: 2/5 | Full Review…
  • Mark Wahlberg's designer-suited performance is shallow and self-admiring ... and William Monahan (who wrote The Departed) devises a new narrative direction which is contrived and preposterous.

    Jan 22, 2015 | Rating: 2/5 | Full Review…
  • Hate the players, not the game.

    Jan 22, 2015 | Rating: 2/5 | Full Review…
  • The dialogue never leaves the surface and the running across Los Angeles that happens in the last sequence is supposed to thrill you, but it's such a cliché that your embarrassment extends to the crew member who has to follow with the camera.

    Jan 9, 2015 | Full Review…
  • Though Wahlberg is a fine actor, there's no way I can buy him as a college English professor holding forth on Shakespeare and Camus.

    Jan 7, 2015 | Full Review…

Audience Reviews for The Gambler

  • Jan 20, 2019
    Marky Mark try'na sell a watch to a stereotype made me kinda shame-laugh, and the last act was an improvement on the first two, but The Gambler is not something I would recommend to, realistically, anyone at all.
    Gimly M Super Reviewer
  • Oct 22, 2018
    Wahlberg delivers one of the finest performances in recent times. The biggest problem is the film built around him sadly can't serve the story and it's this mix up that robs the film of being something grand and original. Wyatt has a consistent vision but he tends to lose the whole focus towards the end and we are essentially robbed of a film with a core purpose. I liked the film and the tone but it struggles to overcome a lucklustre love connection, which becomes one of the key parts of the story at some point. The support cast has depth and shine when provided the chance, Goodman shares one of the best scenes in the later part of the story. This is a good film but not great, the performances surrounding it are worth the ticket but the overall story is lacking where it needed to shine. 19/10/2018.
    Brendan N Super Reviewer
  • Dec 23, 2015
    So fucking bad. I normally like Mark Wahlberg, but he's pretty terrible here, as is the rest of the cast. AND WHAT IS WITH ALL THE FUCKING MONTAGES HERE?! THERE'S LIKE 15 OF THEM!!! Do yourself a favor and avoid this piece of shit.
    Stephen S Super Reviewer
  • May 22, 2015
    Mark Wahlberg stars as The Gambler in this a drab and nihilistic thriller. When college professor Jim Bennett has his gambling debts called in by the Chinese mob he's given seven days to come up with the money. Wahlberg gives a decent performance, but his character is rather unlikable; as he seems to be self-destructing just to see how far he can go. Additionally, the plot is weak and doesn't have a clear direction. Yet director Rupert Wyatt does a nice job at creating an atmospheric tone, and at bringing tension to the scenes. While The Gambler has its moments, it fails to deliver a compelling story.
    Dann M Super Reviewer

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