Croupier

Synopsis: Jack Manfred is an aspiring writer going nowhere fast. To make ends meet, and against his better judgement, he takes a job as a croupier. He finds himself drawn into the casino world and the job gradually takes over his life; his relationship with girlfriend Marion begins to deteriorate. One gambler in particular catches his attention: Jani, whom he starts to see outside of working hours - a serious violation of casino rules. Jani is down on her luck; under pressure from her creditors she approaches Jack, asking him to be the inside man for a planned heist at the casino. Jack carefully considers the odds; it all looks so simple, but even a professional like Jack can't predict the cards he will be dealt.
Genre: Crime, Drama
Director(s): Mike Hodges
Production: The Shooting Gallery
  1 win & 2 nominations.
 
IMDB:
7.2
Metacritic:
75
Rotten Tomatoes:
98%
NOT RATED
Year:
1998
94 min
676 Views


FADE IN:

INT. CASINO - NIGHT

A roulette table. The PUNTERS place their bets. TWELVE

PLAYERS, nine men, three women. The FACES of the men, all

ages, intense, hopeful, fearful. Which of them is JACK?

JACK'S VOICE

Now he had become the still centre

of that spinning wheel of

misfortune.

A MAN'S hand spins the wheel. The ball is thrown against

the spin. Hands, faces, chips...

JACK'S VOICE

The world turned round him...

leaving him miraculously untouched

The little white ball circles the

spinning wheel.

The PUNTERS'S faces as the ball starts to bounce. All eyes

are on the bouncing ball.

JACK'S VOICE

The croupier had reached his goal.

He no longer heard the sound of

the ball.

The back of the CROUPIER'S hand, his slicked-back short

hair, razor cut. The CAMERA moves around to his face...

JACK'S VOICE

To begin with he was Jack Manfred...

whistling sound takes Jack back in time.

INT. PUBLISHER'S OFFICE - DAY

JACK is walking through a maze of open-plan partitioned

offices. He ls casually but fashionably dressed, hair dyed

blond long, a nervous elegance about him, almost

unrecognisable from the croupier's face.

He searches for the right office. He finds it. The name on

the open is GILES CREMORNE.

INT. GILES' OFFICE - DAY

GILES CREMORNE, a public schoolboy in his late twenties

comes forward and vigorously shakes JACK'S hand. Jacketless,

he wears yellow braces. Next to his tidy desk is a slot

machine.

GILES:

Take a pew, Jack. You look well.

What's it been, two years since we

broke bread?

GILES has an upper-class accent, but an acquired street

manner.

JACK:

Three years, two months. March

'93.

GILES:

What a memory you've got. Maths

always was your strong suit. What

happened to the moaning Lisa?

JACK:

She went back to South Africa.

GILES:

(digging)

Did she?

(smiles)

You were pretty thick at one time.

JACK:

We all played the field.

GILES frowns at a memory, an implication. GILES'S mobile

phone buzzes. He picks up.

GILES:

Hi-ya... I'll call you back.

(to Jack)

Now then...

JACK:

(suddenly)

I want a job, Giles.

GILES:

(cautiously)

All right. As what?

JACK:

I was thinking perhaps I could be

a reader. You employ readers, don't

you?

GILES:

We do. For unsolicited manuscripts.

We pay twenty pounds a manuscript.

You might get two, maybe three in

a week. Can you live on sixty

pounds?

JACK opens a pack of Gitanes.

GILES:

Sorry. This is a no-smoking office,

Jack. You've written a book, haven't

you? I didn't read it myself, but --

A WOMAN SECRETARY puts her head into the office.

GILES:

Give me ten minutes, Fiona.

FIONA puts a fax on GILES'S desk, smiles at JACK, and goes.

GILES:

Fiona used to read for me.

He winks at JACK.

GILES:

Let me tell you about our operation.

We like personality authors. People

the public recognises. Celebrity's

what sells books. We can always

find someone to do the writing.

First, we need the face. Then the

concept.

(he is reading the

fax)

Right now I'm looking for a soccer

novel. Something where a tycoon

buys a lousy team and takes it to

the top. Seven figure transfer

fees. Corruption all down the line.

Violence on and off the pitch.

Steroids. Got any concepts? It

could be a thug story. I tell you

what. Why don't you think about

it. A couple of pages. The pitch.

Steroids. Got any concepts? It

could be a thug story. I tell you

what. Why don't you think about

it. A couple of pages.

(smiles)

With plenty of sex, of course.

Rate this script:5.0 / 1 vote

Paul Mayersberg

Paul Mayersberg was born on 18 June 1941 in Cambridge, England, UK. He is a writer and director and was the film critic for Movie magazine in the early 1960s and author of 1968 film book Hollywood, The Haunted House. more…

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