21 (***) - Starring Jim Sturgess, Kevin Spacey, Kate Bosworth, Laurence Fishburne, Aaron Yoo, Liza Lapira, Jacob Pitts and Josh Gad.
Directed by Robert Luketic.
There's something to be said for a cards movie, when blackjack is one of the most boring games to watch, and yet this is better than any poker movie that's come out the past few years. (Rounders was 1997; this is no Rounders). If only this movie about smart people had been smarter.
For instance, why do they keep going to the same casinos? You'd think with all the casinos in Vegas they'd hit a different one each week. Why do they not mix up their signals, make it harder for pit bosses to put 2 and 2 together? And why would certain characters fall for what they do in the third act?
No matter. It's a glossy ride, watching Jake (Across the Universe's Jim Sturgess) being pulled into the world of card-counting, where they're able to rake in six digits each weekend as they otherwise innocently live a normal MIT college life.
So if they'd been more creative with the third act, this could have been something special. As is, it's a decent entertainment. It made me want to read more into how much of it was true and how Vegas is countering card-counters.
Sidenote: This is the third movie that Kevin Spacey and Kate Bosworth have done together, the first two being Beyond the Sea and Superman Returns.