The writer/director of this film would only be noticed by the public is he went broke and knocked over a liquor store. The cast is the “Blacksheep squadron” of the movie world. An A list of nobodies. The most notable actress in this effort also appeared in obscure reality television show, “Joe Schmo”. If you were only given this information about the film, a logical conclusion is that the movie should only be aired on “Mystery Science Theater 3000” or late at night when nobody is awake, or sober. Oddly enough though, this film works.
What most people do not know about writer/director, David James, is that he is, in the truest sense of the word, a real rounder. He is a coinsurer of the ring game, though he can be seen, year in and year out, hanging around World Series of Poker events like a remora hangs onto a shark. This love of the game combined with his history and knowledge gives the movie a realism that is rare in poker films.
Unlike “Rounders” which follows a linear story line, “The Big Blind” has more of a “Pulp Fiction” feel to it. There are multiple plots and story lines which center around the Lake Elsinore casino. James masterfully interlocks these vignettes to create a wonderful cinematic tapestry about the happenings in and around the poker world.
The game itself contains a wide range of personalities and personas. This fact is not lost in the film. Instead of zeroing in on one stereotype, David James creates dozens of diverse personalities. Truly art mimicking real life.
If your enjoyment of poker is not limited to the game itself, but the atmosphere as well, you will enjoy “The Big Blind”. The gritty realism that is represented in this film leaves you with the feeling that the depicted events could be happening at your favorite casino at any time. If you are looking for star power though, I suggest you go rent some quality film like “Gigli”.
Amy White http://www.texas-poker-777.com