Casino is one of the greatest gangster-casino movies ever made and another strong offering from Scorsese. The movie is so popular because of how well it illustrates one man’s fall from the top of the casino world and serves as a cautionary tale of what crime and money can bring you. Ultraviolent, infinitely quotable, and supported by a career-best performance from Sharon Stone, Casino ranks among the best Scorsese-De Niro collaborations. If you’re looking for movies like Casino, then how about getting a load of these awesome flicks.
Movies Like Casino
Those with an interest in films similar to Casino are going to be looking at gangster films, preferably with a gambling or casino link. There will be lots of cussing, a load of pretty gnarly violence, betrayals, and some mob involvement too. These movies generally serve as a glorification of the gangster lifestyle, followed by a cautionary tale of the dangers of power and money. These are some of my personal favorites along the same lines as Casino.
The other ultra-violent offering from Martin Scorsese is considered one of the best gangster movies of all time. It has an all-star cast, and both of the movies feature Scorsese directing, as well as De Niro and Joe Pesci starring. The casino and gambling elements are not as pronounced here as they are in Casino, but the sprawling arm of the seedy gangster underworld is just as long. This isn’t a movie for the squeamish, and it is peppered with sporadic scenes of ultra-violence, but it’s an enthralling ride and a tale with roots in history. If you want one of the best movies like Casino, then Goodfellas should be your choice.
I can’t really get my head around why Bugsy is so underrated as a movie. It’s got wonderful performances from Warren Beatty and Faye Dunaway, a window into the criminal operations of the casino mob, and plenty of violence to sate the appetites of those who love crime movies. The film itself is one of the hidden gems of early-’90s cinema and was deservedly critically acclaimed. If you love Casino, you’ll dig Bugsy because it’s the slightly grittier and less stylistic younger brother. It’s definitely a movie I would recommend checking out if you’ve not seen it before, particularly if you like gangster biopics.
The Wolf of Wall Street (2013)
Another Scorsese entry here is the more recent movie starring Leonardo DiCaprio. This is less about the casino world and focuses its eye on the world of stockbroking, but the essence and themes are similar. A young guy has nothing, gains everything, and then proceeds to lose it all through his own excesses. DiCaprio is great as the despisable Jordan Belfort, and the movie is actually really hilarious. It’s a bit of an easier watch than Casino, especially as you’re rooting for the protagonist’s downfall right from the opening line.
American Gangster (2007)
Ridley Scott’s epic gangster movie follows Denzel Washington’s Frank Lucas as he builds an underworld empire by smuggling illegal substances into the United States. The movie has received plenty of acclaim, performed well at the box office, and is considered one of the strongest gangster films of the ‘00s. Though casinos are less of a focus here, the movie does share some similarities in terms of gangsters rising through the ranks, and corrupt cops. It’s slick, stylish, and the perfect accompaniment to Casino if you fancy a night of gangster movies.
Carlito’s Way (1993)
This Brian De Palma flick, starring Al Pacino, shares a lot of ties with Casino. Both are about aging businessmen in the mob, who find themselves constantly pulled down and inconvenienced by the unreliable men around them. While it doesn’t quite have the savage violence that pops up at times in Casino, Carlito’s Way is a fascinating character study, and one of the more underrated gangster movies ever made. I have no doubt that if you love Casino, you’ll love Carlito’s Way in equal measure!
These are some of the best gangster movies of all time, and movies like Casino in a lot of ways. All of them follow the rise and fall of characters in the dangerous world of organized crime. Yes, some of the flicks are more slick and stylistic than others, but, the majority of them are gritty, violent examinations of the world of the mafia, crime and gambling.