Croupier (1998)

February 27th, 2023
Author: Meredith Taylor

Dir: Mike Hodges | Cast: Clive Owen, Alex Kingston | UK Thriller 94′

Mike Hodges died last year at the age of ninety, and this and ‘Get Carter’ are the two to remember him by (No, I haven’t forgotten ‘Flash Gordon’). Over a quarter of a century after the former, the latter marked a triumphant return from the doldrums and anybody familiar with the original James Bond novels will agree our hero Clive Owen (described by Ann Billson as “possessor of one the most interesting, funereal faces in films”) resembles 007 to a ‘t’.

Presumably Owen just wasn’t interested, but his role in ‘Croupier’ alongside Alex Kingston, will always provide a tantalising reminder of what could have been. He plays Jack Manfred an aspiring writer who is hired as a croupier where he realises that his as life in the casino would make a great novel.

Paul Mayersberg does such a lovely job on the screenplay I can almost forgive him for making such a pig’s ear of ‘Captive’ (obviously he was more suited to writing than directing his own material). @RichardChatten


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