High Roller: The Stu Ungar Story (2003)

High Roller: The Stu Ungar Story (2003)

Stu Ungar has been one of the cornerstones of professional poker for quite some time. Along with his winnings and reputation, Stu has three World of Series of Poker bracelets as a testament to his skill in the game of poker. Generally, the people who reach the level that Stu has attained don’t get there by taking the easy way. Mostly you find them along the narrow and rocky path that the majority of us avoid. Some turn back, some die along the way, others, like Stu, come out the other side and have a heck of a story to tell. 

This movie is based on the real life experiences Stu “The Kid” Ungar. He grew up as a card prodigy who was playing high stakes games in New York before he was old enough to drive. By the time he was twenty his dealings with organized crime had him escaping the Big Apple, in fear for his life, and running to Las Vegas. Eventually, he paid off the mobsters by winning a gin rummy tournament. Now that he had bought his freedom, he set his sights on bigger game, the World Series of Poker. In 1980, he won the tournament on his very first try, and repeated the next year as well. 

In the course of his life Stu Ungar has won, lost, and won back his fortune. This movie is his story, in all its raw and sometimes humiliating honesty. Stu Ungar is competently portrayed by Michael Imperioli.

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