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Top Five Films Centered Around Sports Betting

Sports betting movies have been on the Hollywood scene for many generations. Watching someone win or lose a lot of money and try to dig themselves out of the hole resonates with many people today. For many years sports betting was looked down upon and, in some states, illegal to conduct. Today sports betting is getting more and more accepted in the mainstream and finding more people who actively use offshore betting sites, but there has always been a fascination with betting. In some cases, it is even seen as a classy pastime for the rich and famous, so it’s understandable that it’s a common theme for the big screen.

Top five films

  1. Eight men out
  • As a civilian, betting on a sports game is not illegal, but players should not be taking money for a game. In the Eight men out, they covered a controversial moment in baseball when eight members of the 1919 Chicago White Sox members accepted bribes to lose the world series. Once discovered, all eight players received a lifetime ban from the MLB (not the last time the MLB will hand out lifetime bans for betting on sports games). 

The movie’s overall theme is not based on the wrongs of the players but more on trying to understand why they did what they did. These players played when money was scarce in baseball, and they did not particularly care for their owners. So the option to take a good sum of money seemed like a no-brainer to them. It attempted to show that players needed to be respected more in their profession, or they would turn to other means to make money, even if it’s to the detriment of their team. The movie also tries to showcase why regulations between sports betting and sports are needed. If there is no regulation, then people can just pay players to throw games. 

  1. Two for the money
  • Some sports betting movies attempt to show the mechanics of offshore sports betting. It attempts to show the science of making a bet on the game. You need to consider how many times you should bet on any given day to make a profit, etc.; what Two for the Money tries to show is the emotion professional sports bettors go through daily. 

When you think of sports betting, you think of the high times. Making all the money, going to all the parties, and participating in the activities that the money allows you to partake in. But what about what the person goes through when they lose? Another name for betting is gambling, and it’s gambling because just as you one a million dollars one day, you could lose a million dollars the next day. Two for the Money is looking to showcase both the highs and lows of the sports betting profession. The moment when you win a lot of money and go to the club the same night and the times when you lose a lot of money and wonder how you will pay your rent for the month. It’s a rollercoaster of emotions people go through when betting on sports. No one is 100% correct, so a lot of mistakes will happen at some point; how does that look at what this movie attempts to portray? 

  1. The Gambler (1974)
  • There is a dark side to offshore sports betting that often needs a movie, just like the good side. Not everyone who engages in sports betting wins big. In The Gambler, it follows a college teacher who suffers from a gambling addiction that quickly gets him into trouble. Under the watchful eye of the mob, the man goes into debt, going to his mom for money and gambling the money away before he has a chance to pay his debt. Now further in debt, the main character looks to a college basketball athlete he teaches to help him get back in the good graces of the mob. He asked the player to shave points in his next game. With the mob watching, the player does as requested, and the teacher avoids further issues with the mob, who can make up the money he owes betting on the game. 
  1. Let it Ride
  • In this comedy, the main character is a lowly taxi driver who likes to gamble—sometimes gambling away his last dollar. After promising his disappointed wife that he would stop betting, he gets a tip that a horse has a high chance of winning, so he and his friend go to the track and bet $50. After winning over $700 and thinking of being content with his winning, he gets another tip on the next race and bets all of his earnings on the tipped horse. The rest of the movie follows the main character getting into a series of incidents, all while winning every horse race he bets on and ultimately winning the final race after betting his entire earning of the day ($68,000) thanks to a photo finish and capping off a day of good fortune. 
  1. Bookies
  • Three college students are looking to break into the offshore betting business. These three students find quick success and soon understand the dangers of opening a business and achieving great success; not everyone will be happy for you. They soon find themselves in the sights of two Italian mobsters who threaten them to close shop as they are infringing on their territory. One of the three students bets with the mobsters to come to a resolution. The mobsters get to bet on a game of their choice and the winner. The mobster ends up picking boxing as the sport. Once the students become aware of the sport, they fix the match, and once the underdog wins, the threats from the mobsters seize, and the three students take their earnings and invest in their own projects. 

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