Based on “Bringing Down The House” By Ben Mezrich, 21 made its way into theaters across the United States today.
The latest in gambling movies, 21 opened today in the United States. 21 was based on a book about blackjack card counting written by Ben Mezrich, a nonfiction bestseller. In both the book and the movie, MIT (Massachusetts Institute of Technology) students utilized their above average math skills to win big at Las Vegas blackjack tables.
The basic plot of the film revolves around Ben Campbell, who is played by Jim Sturgess). Ben is your typical brainiac when it comes to numbers. He’s already attending MIT, and has been accepted to Harvard Medical. Unfortunately for Ben, he’s broke, he can’t afford tuition.
He is however one of 74 candidates competing for a scholarship. Problem: in this pool of people, amongst these 73 other competitors, Campbell is run of the mill. He’s nothing special, they’re all genius’s, they’ve all done great things.
After an intriguing discussion during a class, a professor, Mickey Rosa, played by Kevin Spacey invites Campbell to become a join in a campus club, so to speak. A small club of MIT card sharps, ie, blackjack card counters. Bonus, the group also includes the blonde Campbell has been drooling over for a few days now, apparently, her daddy was a blackjack player and she ‘grew up on blackjack’.
Throughout the course of a year, 17 visits to Las Vegas, 6 Million dollars is stripped from casinos, counting cards is legal, however, Las Vegas casinos are said to… ‘frown on it’.
Throughout the course of the movie, viewers saw a small glimpse of Las Vegas high roller glimpse. The attraction between the male and female lead was touched upon, though rather skimmed over. There was some mutiny, revenge, and other action type areas, and I did hide my face in my husbands shirt once. In general, the movie lacked attention to detail. It didn’t really ever suck you in.
What must it feel like to be 21, go home at the end of the day, and have won 40 thousand dollars? The first real loss, what does that do to a card counter? Throughout the movie, Campbell lives two lives, one in Nevada, as a high roller rich boy with fake ID. Another in Boston, as a college student, vying for a scholarship, with two geeky best friends, trying to win a science contest. What kinds of changes are made in his Boston Life?
I wouldn’t say that 21 was a bust, I wouldn’t call it memorable either. I am anxious however to buy the book ;).
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