Are Casinos the Same in Real Life as In the Movies?

The movies make casinos look like cool, glamourous, and exciting places to be. However, everything looks better in the movies, so how do you know it would be the same if you spent an evening in one yourself? Would you be disappointed by the lack of Hollywood glamour, or would you be wowed by the exotic locations and beautiful people you would see in real life?  

It turns out that, as with most things, Hollywood have got some things right and other things are a little bit exaggerated. Here is a guide to the similarities and differences.


The glamour of a movie casino is undisputed. This can be the same in real life with the big casinos in Las Vegas and Atlantic City all trying to compete to be the most luxurious and unique. You are expected to dress up for an evening of gambling just like James Bond. However, even the most glamourous casinos are more casual in the daytime with jeans and sneakers being allowed.

The glamour of a real-life casino will depend on which one you go to. Expect to be amazed by the style of the Bellagio in Las Vegas or the Casino de Monte-Carlo in Monaco. However, if you play in a casino in a small town or city, it is less likely to be glamourous. The expected attire will be a lot more casual, and your fellow players may not look as if they have just come off the catwalk.


In the movies, people enter casinos with a large stack of cash which they then throw on the table with a flourish to indicate that they are rich, fabulous, and ready to play. In reality, few people carry cash anymore and if they went around waving a large sum of money, they are more likely to be robbed than to win at the blackjack table. Unfortunately, throwing a credit or debit card on the casino table doesn’t look nearly as exciting, so movie makers have stuck to dollar bills to emphasize their point. 


Characters in the movies will often be seen entering a smart casino and playing blackjack, roulette, or poker. In real life, these are just some of the games that can be played in a casino. Games have increased over time as new ones are invented and customers want to try their luck at something different. The invention of online casinos means that every game imaginable is open to everyone. It no longer matters how much floor space the individual casino has, and you don’t even have to leave the comfort of your own living room to play. For the lowdown on the best online games available, check out sites such as Comeon. 

Extracurricular Activities

One thing the movies don’t tend to show is the extracurricular activities available in a casino. The best casinos in the world compete, not only to offer the best games, but to offer the best surroundings too. Therefore, you can take a trip to Las Vegas and stay at the hotel linked to the casino. If you want to take a break from the card table, you can take a ride on an in-hotel gondola or at the in-house funfair, visit the circus, marvel over the choreographed water display, or see one of the hottest bands or singers perform a live concert. You don’t often see these things in the movies as the action is focused on the casino itself. 

The Movies Make It Look Easy

In the movies, the player is surrounded by supporting fans. They learn to count cards without even trying (Rain Man), or run through the casino causing mayhem while all around them other players continue their games, barely noticing (Casino Royale). 

The reality is vastly different as casino patrons will usually prefer to play their own game than watch other people’s. Card counting gets you thrown out immediately, and it is not as easy as it looks. As well as this, bouncers are placed around the venue to control any mayhem. 

There are both similarities and differences between casinos in the movies and real-life casinos and this depends on where you are playing and what movie you are watching. 

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