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Mississippi Grind (2015) 

Down on his luck and facing financial hardship, Gerry teams up with younger charismatic poker player, Curtis, in an attempt to change his luck. The two set off on a road trip through the South with visions of winning back what's been lost.

Directors: Anna Boden, Ryan Fleck
Writers: Anna Boden, Ryan Fleck
Stars: Ben Mendelsohn, Ryan Reynolds, Yvonne Landry | See full cast and crew


Down on his luck and facing financial hardship, GERRY teams up with a younger charismatic poker player named CURTIS in an attempt to change his luck. The two set off on a road trip through the South with visions of winning back what has been lost.

User Reviews

"Mississippi Grind" (2015 release; 108 min.) brings the story of two gamblers. As the movie opens, we see how a guy (we later learn his name is Gerry) walks into a local casino in Dubuque, Iowa. He must be a regular as everyone knows him. But at his poker table, there is one new face, a younger guy named Curtis. Gerry is in real estate and way down on his luck. Curtis oozes charm and confidence. They bit it off nicely, and on a whim, decide to drive to New Orleans to enter into a 'big game' (buy-in price is $25K). To tell you more would spoil your viewing experience, you'll just have to see for yourself how it all plays out.

Couple of comments: this is the latest movie from writers-directors (and real life partners) Anna Boden and Ryan Fleck (they previously brought us "It's Kind Of a Funny Story"). Here they tackle the subject matter of gambling, and more precisely the addition to gambling. Combine that with the road movie angle, and you've got yourself an update to "California Split" of yesteryear. That aside, the movie is really a character study. Gerry (played by Ben Mendelsohn) is someone who you feel sorry for, although he is not quite the 'loveable loser'. At one point he goes to visit his ex-wife in Little Rock, and you can just feel the devastation set in when he learns she has remarried and didn't even tell him. Ryan Reynolds is perfect as the confidence-oozing Curtis. "You'll be my lucky charm" Gerry tells Curtis as they hit the road to New Orleans. Sienna Miller is okay as the love interest of Curtis. As mentioned, this is a road movie, and we get the best scenery from cities like St. Louis, Memphis, Little Rock, etc. Kudos also for the outstanding soundtrack, which features tons of 'old school' blues artists and songs. All that said, the sum of the parts don't measure up to the total of the movie, which lacks the compelling elements needed to pull me in.

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