If there is a single movie that describes casino empires, then it has to be the movie Casino. It is a 1995 release directed by Martin Scorsese, that features two mobsters who are trying to build their casino kingdom. One of the most exciting things about this film is that it is based on the real-life story of two friends; Frank Rosenthal and Tony Spilotro. The two real-life characters are played by Robert De Niro and Joe Pesci respectively.
Such a film is bound to have many truths in it given that it is based on a true story. But the director must also use some bit of lies to make it interesting. We will help you debunk the truth from lies by discussing facts and fictional moments in the Casino movie.
What was true in the Casino movie
Here are the Casino movie true facts that you need to know:
- Roberto De Niro met Frank Rosenthal. It is interesting that Roberto De Niro actually met the man he was going to enact before the movie was filmed. The content of their discussion is not revealed publicly but it is assumed that he wanted an in-depth understanding of Rosenthal’s personality.
- Rosenthal did not possess a gaming license. Just like it was in the Casino movie, Rosenthal did not possess a gaming license. He was involved in organized crimes in his real life and could not get a gaming license. The mob did not want to risk giving him a gaming license. However, he was given some titles that did not attract attention e.g. entertainment director.
- Rosenthal survived a car bombing in real life. In the Casino movie, Rosenthal survives a car bombing. This film incident is based on real-life events that define his life. So, you might be asking how he survived a car bomb in real life. Well, his car had a metal stabilization plate that was beneath the driver’s seat. That is what saved his life.
- A casino executive was murdered in his home in Costa Rica. There are many murders in the movie Casino. Not all the murders in the movie happened in real life. But one that you should know happened in real life was the murder of a former casino executive who was tracked and killed in Costa Rica.
- Geri and Spilotro had an affair. If you watch a Casino movie online, you will notice that there is a love triangle between three characters i.e. Rothstein, McKenna, and Santoro. This love triangle is pivotal in the demise of some of these characters. In real life, it is alleged that Spilotro had an affair with Rosenthal’s ex-wife McGee. It might not have had the same repercussions it did in the movie, but the mob frowned it.
- Geri’s death was a result of a drug overdose. The death of Rosenthal’s ex-wife Geri was a tragic moment in the Casino movie. Just like it was in the movie, the death was caused by a drug overdose in real life.
- Spilotro was killed together with his brother. After the car bombing of Rothstein, Frank ambushes Pesci Santoro and his brother Dominick. Santoro was suspected to be behind the car accident and thus killed by the mob. In the film, the two brothers are buried alive in a cornfield. This scene of the movie is based on a fact that Santoro and his brother were killed and buried in an Indiana cornfield.
- Rothstein’s attorney is a real lawyer. Another fun fact that you can carry from the film is that Oscar Godman, Sam Rothstein’s attorney, is actually a lawyer in real life. On top of that, he has represented many mobsters in court, making his character a perfect depiction of the real-life person.
What was fiction in the Casino movie?
The Casino movie review would be incomplete without looking at some fictional moments that did not happen in real life.
- Spilotro and his brother were killed before being buried. In the film, the two brothers are buried alive in a cornfield. This is quite different from what was recorded in one of the statements during the trial. The trial testimony revealed that the two brothers were beaten to death after being lured by the mob to a residence far from the cornfield.
- The dialogue was improvised. Most dialogues between Robert De Niro and Joe Pesci were fictional. The director did not have the exact words of the mobsters. The two actors were told when to start and end a dialogue.
- Authority finds out about Las Vegas skim at a grocery shop. In the film, the authorities find out about the Las Vegas skim at a grocery store when they plant a bug in a vent. This is slightly untrue because, in real life, the authorities knew of the truth when eavesdropping on a conversation between Italian family members at Capri pizzeria.
Well, these are some of the lies that you can find in this film. Since it is based on real-life events, fictional moments are rare.
Casino Movie – Handbook for Gamblers
Any professional gambler should watch Casino the movie. It is the epitome of understanding the strange dealings of gambling. It is not a complex film; it details real-life events that you can relate to if you are a lover of the casino world.
Where to buy the movie?
Unfortunately, the movie isn’t available on Netflix. But you can find it on other paid channels such as Amazon Prime Video, Apple TV, AMC+, Microsoft, and Google Play. You can also find online Casino movies and watch them if you can’t buy the movie.