Casino Could It Happen? – “Casino Royale” (2006)

 Casino Could It Happen? – “Casino Royale” (2006)

Could an international thief win a high-stakes poker tournament against 007?

If you need a quick refresher, you can watch the poker-table scene here: 

I’m going to go ahead and call this scene utterly implausible.

First of all, the reason the bad guy here, some French dude named “Le Chiffre” (hahaha) is even playing poker is because he needs to win this high-stakes Texas Hold ’em tournament to get enough money so his creditors won’t kill him. Why do his creditors want to kill him? It’s a long story, but it’s basically because his terrorist-for-profit plan didn’t pan out as expected. In any case, here he is, trying to win a tournament so he can pay off his creditors and not get killed. Want to try your hand (no pun intended) at a poker tournament? Tunica casinos host tournaments all the time. See for yourself.

Phew… Okay, so that kind of makes sense, even though it doesn’t. The next leap of faith you have to take when watching this scene is that, while he is the world’s top for-profit terrorist, he’s also a world-class Texas hold ‘em player. I’m guessing the odds are against that. I can’t imagine many most-wanted terrorists are out there playing poker tournaments in their downtime. Who knows?

Anyway, MI6 enters Bond (who is also a world-class poker player somehow), in the hopes that he wins the tournament so Le Chiffre won’t have the money to pay his people off. At some point during all this, Le Chiffre realizes who Bond is and decides to try to kill him by poisoning his drink. Ha! You’re going to kill 007 by poisoning his drink? I don’t think so, buddy. But one think you can count on, in Tunica, is that your drinks will not only be poison-free, they’ll also be complementary.

This is my biggest qualm. You know that James effing Bond is across the table from you. The way I see it, no matter what happens at the poker table, there are two possible outcomes if you’re the bad guy – either prison or death. Say you win. Then Bond catches you and you go to prison for a long time, or you get killed in the process. Or maybe you lose. Then you either get caught by Bond anyway (I mean, it’s not like just because you lose, everyone’s just going to forget you’re an international terrorist who’s killed untold scores of people), or he kills you while saying something absurd like, “Guess you’ll have to fold,” while you’re getting crushed by a giant trash compactor or something.

So really, Le Chiffre probably should have been thinking more about what he was going to do to Bond and a little less about his poker hand.

Oh yeah, one more thing. You’re telling me this Le Chiffre guy (cracks me up every time) is ridiculously rich (not counting his current cashflow issues) but can’t afford to get facial reconstructive surgery? He has a scar across his face that Omar from “The Wire” would laugh at. C’mon!

Plausibility Rating: 1½ Spades

Try your luck at Texas Hold ’em at one of Tunica’s Poker Rooms at Horseshoe (brand-spanking new!) or Hollywood.

Not a poker player? No worries! No matter what kind of gaming you enjoy, there’s always a tournament or other promotion. See what’s in store.

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