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Film Review - The Gambler

GAMBLER 3

“The Gambler” is a remake of a 1974 feature, a semi-autobiographical effort that launched screenwriter James Toback’s career and provided star James Cann with one of his best roles. It was a complex, gritty look at self-destruction, boasting a decade-approved detachment that added to its severity and sophisticated characterization. 2014’s “The Gambler” doesn’t share the same sense of tonal bravery, hoping to remain in a claustrophobic space of personal ruin while keeping hope alive through half-realized romantic prospects. There are moments of moral muddiness that stick to the movie in fascinating ways, but this is not cohesive work from director Rupert Wyatt (“Rise of the Planet of the Apes”), who’s often caught trying to make a pretty picture when the material begs for ugliness. Read the rest at Blu-ray.com

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