Best Pool Movies on DVD, Bluray

Pool Movies

The Hustler

Pool Movies: The Hustler

The Hustler is an all-time classic movie that was originally released in 1961. It stars the late Paul Newman whose enigmatic character dominates the film. Co-starring in the movie with Newman are the late great Jackie Gleason, George C Scott and Piper Laurie. Newman who plays Eddie Felson is a pool room hustler hoping to make big money. The film has become one of Newman’s most admired award winning portrayals of his career.

The Hustler was directed by Robert Rossen who also co-wrote and produced the film, while this film brought him great success that he never really topped since. The film has many phrases that are quoted by fans of the film and have become part of cinema folklore, while the writing is simply superb and cannot be surpassed by any other of its genre.

The screenplay of this Twentieth Century Fox release tells the tale of Eddie Felson (Newman) who is taken under the wing of gambler Bert Gordon (George C Scott) who teaches him how to hustle which culminates in a great pool hall confrontation with Minnesota Fats (Jackie Gleason). Nominated for six academy awards fans of Newman will love the pool room setting that is both funny and intense at the same time.

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The Color of Money

Pool Movies: The Color of Money

The Color of Money is the 1986 movie sequel to the pool room classic The Hustler. Starring once again the late great Paul Newman as Eddie Felson pool room shark, who won an Oscar for his performance, the story has moved on to where we find Eddie trying to make the big time again by taking on a protégé (Tom Cruise) to teach him everything he knows about the art of hustling.

Tom Cruise plays his part well portraying the wild streak in the character, while his girlfriend played by Mary Elizabeth Mastrantonio of Robin Hood Prince of Thieves fame plays her manipulative character adequately. Martin Scorsese who directed the movie captures the pool room atmosphere well portraying the psychology of the players intensely.

Fans who like to play pool will love this classic movie, while even those who aren’t into the game at all will well appreciate the sterling performance of Paul Newman at his best. The Oscar awarded to Newman for this performance was very much deserved and The Color of Money released through Walt Disney Studios is in effect one of the all-time classics not to be missed.

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Pool Hall Junkies

Pool Movies: Poolhall Junkies

Pool Hall Junkies is the movie that features the last performance of the late great Rod Steiger who plays a pool room worker. It is the story of Johnny, played by Mars Callahan, who is an up and coming pool player. He has a bust up with his mentor Joe, played by Chazz Palminteri and packs in pool to settle down into an everyday job working in the construction industry but soon regrets the move when he hears that Joe has found a new pool player to replace him.

Brad played by Rick Schroder is a good player and this very fact tempts Johnny back to playing pool and the inevitable tournament that will ensue between the two protagonists. Fans of pool will love this classic although it does not take a great understanding of the game to enjoy the movie.

Although this film cannot compare to The Hustler it is very watchable and was released on DVD in 2004. Mars Callahan who also directed the movie is certainly in some way paying homage to its predecessors in terms of the edgy pool room tournament feel, while Samuel Goldwyn Studios may not class this movie as one of its major successes it certainly has a cult kind of following.

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Stickmen

Pool Movies: Stickmen

Stickmen is one of the most entertaining pool room themed movies released of late that combines tense poolroom drama along with comedy and wit that is not found in similar releases of this genre. The film captures the atmosphere and essence of the pool room in all its glory incorporating playing pool with drinking, sex and the odd bit of violence dropped in for good measure. The violence however is not gratuitous so does not spoil the atmosphere in any way of this Universal release.

The action takes place amongst the underworld activities of pool rooms and their tournaments. The story is based around three friends played by Robbie Magasiva, Paolo Rotondo and Scott Wills who all put in sterling performances as the pool obsessed friends. The fact that the film is a Kiwi production set away from the Hollywood style of pool movie makes the film refreshing and different. Director Hamish Rothwell handles the subject matter with flair, while all the supporting cast make their characters very believable putting in great background performances. Hilarious and fun this film is one not to be missed!

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Turn the River

Pool Movies: Turn The River

Turn the River is not your usual pool movie as it has a story running alongside the pool theme whereby the main character Kailey played by Famke Jannsen is trying to win back her long lost son who left with her Ex-husband following their divorce. She aims to raise enough money through pool tournaments to flee the country with her son as soon as she can.

Kailey’s friend Quinn played by Rip Torn has taught her all he knows about the hustling side of pool and Kailey aims to use this knowledge to her advantage. Her Ex-husband is controlled throughout by a domineering mother played by Lois Smith resulting in Kailey’s son becoming unhappy living with his father. The story is one of a mother’s fight to regain custody of her child amidst the pool hustling tournaments of New York.

Written and directed by Chris Eigeman the movie is not your average pool room story but is very well put together being sensitive, thoughtful and not over played by the actors. First released at the Hamptons International Film Festival this mother/son relationship film has a good balance between family drama and pool room classic.

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