So after my third viewing of Casino Royale, I thought it would be a great reference for Bond fans to know what hands were played in each poker scene between Le Chiffre and Bond. With the financing of a worldwide terrorist organization hanging on the flip of every card, the pressure is on for Bond to win!
WARNING! HUGE SPOILERS AHEAD!
If you do not know how the game of poker is played, even after having seen the movie - or you had a question about some aspect of the game, please visit the following site:
Texas Hold 'Em
If you are unsure of how the 'best hand' in poker is made, visit the following site:
Poker Hand Rankings
Now, onto the scenes from the movie...
Scene 1 - First Blood
The first scene pitts Bond against Le Chiffre in heads up play. Bond hints at seeing Le Chiffre's tell and eventually mucks on the river (fifth) card (the term 'muck' means to throw your hand away, basically acknowledging that another hand shown has beaten your hand - very similar to folding):
As you can see, Bond mucks his hand whilst Le Chiffre reveals his Full House of 2's and 9's. I think Bond lost $50,000 from this hand.
Scene 2 - Lucky Le Chiffre
In the next scene, Bond uses Le Chiffre's "tell" to his advantage and thinks he has him beat. Unfortunately for Bond, prior to the hand, Mathis double crosses him and tells Le Chiffre that Bond is on to his tell. Le Chiffre uses this to his advantage by faking a bluff and winning the hand.
As we can see here, Bond's Full House (Aces and Kings - an excellent hand) cannot compete with Le Chiffre's four Jacks - a rare and superb hand in poker. Bond loses $14 million+ dollars from this hand, and eventually gets CIA Agent Felix Leiter to stake him another $5 million to buy back in the game.
Scene 3 - Bond Wins
The final and decisive hand may be the most outlandish of them all. As one of my friends (an avid poker player) stated leaving the theater - "If I ever got beat like that I would probably stop playing poker forever." This goes to show you just how rare this occurrence would be for a player.
After calls of "all-in" by a total of four players at the table, Le Chiffre's hand is the superior up until Bond reveals his. Le Chiffre's Full House of Aces and Sixes seems to be the ultimate hand. However, Bond slyly reveals that he has Le Chiffre beat - with a straight flush! Bond's 4-5-6-7-8 (Spades) sequence finishes Le Chiffre, and wins Bond a cool $120 million, much to the relief of the British and American governments.
I would recommend seeing the rest of the film (it's awesome) to get the whole experience of this one-of-a-kind Bond film.
For those interested, I have reviewed Casino Royale here.
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