Friday May 5, 2017 at 6:11 am
HOT !

Win It All, a new indie film by Joe Swanberg and starring Jake Johnson, is currently on Netflix. Win It All is a gambling movie that resembles California Split more so than Rounders. The plot surrounds a gambling addict, Eddie (Jake Johnson,) who is tasked with holding a bag of money for a friend serving a six-month stint in prison. In a moment of weakness, Eddie “borrows” money from the bag and goes on a losing gambling bender. When his friend is released from prison several months early, Eddie has to quickly figure out a way to recoup his losses in excess of $21,000.

Win It All

I will watch any movie about gambling…especially degenerate gambling. Win It All is not exactly a poker movie, although there's a couple of poker scenes. Win It All is more of a degen gambling film because the main character is a former member of Gamblers Anonymous, who parks cars at Chicago Cubs games by day, then stays up all night gambling. Our super degen plays poker and blackjack at illegal gambling parlors in Chinatown. At one point, the super degen is pitching cards into a mixing bowl in the back of a Chinese restaurant. Then, our anti-hero is bitching that a monstrous rainstorm cancelled races at the horse track. When he got super stuck, he weaseled himself into an exclusive high-stakes poker game in the Chicago suburbs.

Yeah, someone made a movie about someone who will gamble on anything.

Indie filmmaker Joe Swanberg (Drinking Buddies) typically outlines his films then allows his actors to improvise from scene to scene. For Win It All, Swanberg and his co-writer Jake Johnson, took a different approach and penned a script. The departure with an actual screenplay was a shift from his collection of low-fi mumblecore flicks. As a result, Win It All is one of Swanberg's most cohesive and best films to date.

Although Swanberg admitted that he's not a poker player, he understood the gambling aspect as an indie filmmaker and producer. Swanberg self-financed his previous films to guarantee creative control. He constantly gambled on his own projects with his own money and whatever money he borrowed from friends and family.

Jake Johnson, on the other hand, is an avid card player and made sure the poker scenes were authentic. When Johnson moved from Chicago to California to pursue a career in acting, he played low-stakes poker and blackjack on the side to supplement his income. Johnson found it easy writing for the character of Eddie because he played against a similar personality… a likable loser and know-it-all that can't ever catch a break. Keegan-Michael Key plays Eddie's GA sponsor and he summed up Eddie's personality the best: "You're a loser. You lose, lose, lose."

Win It All tells the story about Eddie (Jake Johnson), a degen gambler from Chicago, who stops attending Gamblers Anonymous meetings. Eddie bounces around from odd job to odd job to make a quick cash… so he can gamble it up. He can't even afford to buy a cup of coffee in the morning after staying up all night gambling in dark and smoky gambling dens in Chinatown. Eddie gets a visit from a nefarious friend who is about to serve a six-month jail sentence. He gives Eddie a bag and tells him to watch it for him until he gets out of prison…if everything is still inside then Eddie will get $10,000. Eddie has instructions not to look in the bag, but of course, Eddie looks in the bag and discovers bricks of cash. What would any degen do? Peel off a few bills and gamble it up! Eddie goes on a run… before he loses it all and then some. The total destruction…. Down $21K! Reality sinks in and Eddie decides to quit gambling and find a square job to pay back his friend…otherwise suffer violent consequences. Eddie returns to Gamblers Anonymous and takes an entry-level job in the family landscaping business. Eddie also meets someone at the neighborhood bar… a nurse named Eva (played by Mexican actress Aislinn Derbez). Eddie ends his evil gambling ways to focus on normal things like a job, relationship, and slowly paying back his debt. Just when it seems like Eddie is back on track, his friend from prison calls with good/bad news… he is getting released from jail several months early. Eddie has one week to figure out how to recoup five figures in losses. What would a degen do if they were stuck bigtime? That's right… gamble it up!

I won't give you any spoilers on what happens, but Win It All defies the trope of the downtrodden gambler who meets a girl who helps pull him out of a tailspin, turns luck around... and they live happily ever after.

Joe Swanberg, Director of "Win It All"

I am a gambler in life. I am not a card player. I gamble on movies.

CashWinALl

Hollywood took a shot and whiffed with the remake of The Gambler (with Marky Mark a.k.a. Mark Wahlberg reprising the role of James Caan). Hollywood also shit the bed with Runner Runner, the Ben Affleck online poker vehicle penned by Rounders writers Brian Koppelman and David Levien. After two big misses, you would expect major studios to steer far away from gambling/poker films.

Thank God for Netflix and indie filmmaking! Otherwise, we wouldn't have special films like Mississippi Grind and Win It All.

Mississippi Grind was a small-budget indie film that surprised me (you can read the review here), which explored the bittersweet off-the-felt antics of degen card players – played by Ryan Reynolds and Ben Mendelsohn – who were both sort of losers in life constantly seeking that next big score.

Win It All fits into the gambling genre, but it's definitely not a poker film despite the plot having a heavy poker element to it. As a stand-alone film without knowing anything about Joe Swanberg and his style of filmmaking, Win It All works as because of the likability of Jake Johnson's Eddie character.

Everyone knows an Eddie. We've all played poker with an Eddie. Some of our friends are Eddie. It seems like there's a guy like that in every poker room in Chicago… in America… in the world. Doesn't matter if it's Monte Carlo, or Las Vegas, or a private game in a dingy alley in Chinatown… there's a guy like Eddie gambling away his last $200 with hopes of going on an epic heater. Someone made a movie about one of my friends…and Jake Johnson's portrayal of Eddie felt bone-chillingly realistic.

A review from The Ringer said it best: "He's not playing the gambling man you see in movies: He's playing the gambler down the street."

Win It All is currently available to stream on Netflix. Watch the trailer here…

Latest news
Sunday January 19, 2020 at 12:30 am
Telex
PokerStars Half Price Sunday Million

This Sunday will include special half-price tournaments at PokerStars. That's right the Half Price Sunday Million is only $54.50 this week for half the usual buy-in, plus the usual guaranteed prize pool of $1 million is still in play. There's also a half-price version of Sunday Warm-Up which will cost $107.50. The Half Price Sunday Storm will be just $5.50. Click here for more details.

Friday January 17, 2020 at 9:38 pm
2020 Aussie Millions: Farid Jattin wins 25K Challenge for $983,646 AUD

Farid Jattin outlasted 169 runners to win the $25K Challenge at the 2020 Aussie Millions hosted at the Crown Casino in Melbourne, Australia. Jattin chopped heads up with George Wolff to win $983,646 AUD or approximately $679K USD. The final table also included Steve O'Dwyer, Sam Greenwood, Masato Yokosawa, Jack Sinclair, and Kenny Hallaert.

Thursday January 16, 2020 at 2:00 am
WSOP announces 'Value Menu' bracelet events for 2020 WSOP

The World Series of Poker announced a special round of value menu events at the 2020 WSOP that include buy-ins of $1,000 or less. A total of 25 bracelet events will be hosted at the Rio Casino this summer that have a modest and affordable buy-in. A baker's dozen of events, 13 in total, at the 2020 WSOP will have buy-ins $888 or less including the $400 Colossus and numerous $500 buy-in deepstacked bracelet events.

Wednesday January 15, 2020 at 3:53 am
Dustin Schoonover wins WSOP Circuit Choctaw Durant and first ring

The World Series of Poker Circuit's latest stop hit up the Oklahoma/Dallas area for the 2020 WSOP Circuit Choctaw Durant. Dustin Schoonover outlasted 1,065 runners in the $1,700 buy-in Main Event to win $272,846. The Choctaw Durant final table also included John Skrovan, Brant Jolly, Mark Newton, Christopher Staats, Allen Brivic, Montana Bills, Austin Lewis, and Trung Pham.

Tuesday January 14, 2020 at 4:48 am
Chance Kornuth leads final table at 2020 WPT Gardens Poker Championship

Season XVIII of the World Poker Tour continued with the 2020 WPT Gardens Poker Championship that attracted 257 runners for their annual big tournament every January at the Hawaiian Gardens just outside Los Angeles. The 2020 WPT Gardens final table of six is set to resume on March 31, 2020 at the HyperX eSports Arena at the Luxor Casino in Las Vegas. Chance Kornuth bagged up the lead at the final table that also included Tuan Phan, Qing Liu, Straton Wilhelm, Jonathan Cohen, and Markus Gonsalves.

Friday January 10, 2020 at 2:09 pm
Interview: Martin Harris, Author of Poker and Pop Culture

D and B Poker published "Poker and Pop Culture: Telling the Story of America's Favorite Card Game" by Martin Harris. During the poker boom, Harris authored a popular blog titled Hard-Boiled Poker. Harris quit his job as an English professor and went to Las Vegas to cover the World Series of Poker for numerous outlets. Over the last 15 years, Harris compiled a collection of essays that became the genesis of Poker and Pop Culture. We're fortunate that Harris sat down with us for a fun interview.

Friday January 10, 2020 at 3:00 am
2020 WSOP releases $10,000 Championship events schedule

A total of 17 championship caliber events with at least a buy-in of $10,000 are on the schedule for the 2020 World Series of Poker at the Rio Casino in Las Vegas. The WSOP released the dates for all $10K championships including the $50,000 Poker Players Championship, $10,000 Main Event, and the $10,000 WSOP.com Online NL Championship, which is the online $10K event hosted online.

Thursday January 2, 2020 at 2:15 pm
Brazilian pro Felipe 'Mojave' Ramos joins GGPoker

The new calendar year of 2020 was barely a day old when Felipe 'Mojave' Ramos announced the news on his social media feed that he will be joining GGPoker as their latest ambassador. Mojave joins the likes of Daniel Negreanu and Bryn Kenney as ambassadors. Mojave spent time as the top ranked Brazilian and Latin American online player with over $2.6 million in career tournament earnings.

Friday December 27, 2019 at 10:36 pm
2019: The Big Stories, Part 2

The year in review for 2019 continues with the second part that covers June through December. The World Series of Poker celebrated its 50th anniversary with a blowout at the Rio in Las Vegas. Hossein Ensan from Germany won the second-largest Main Event in WSOP history and he banked $10 million. PokerStars also announced the 2020 PSPC, which will take place in Barcelona in August 2020. PokerStars was also sold to Flutter (aka Paddy Power/Betfair). The Mike Postle cheating scandal also broke after he got caught cheating on the Stones Gambling Hall live stream.

Thursday December 26, 2019 at 5:49 pm
2019: The Big Stories, Part 1

We're quickly approaching the end of 2019 and the end of the decade. So much happened in 2019, we have a special two-part series highlighting the best and most interesting stories of 2019. In the first half of 2019, some of the big stories involved Chino Rheem winning the 2019 PCA and Spain's Roman Colillas taking down the inaugural PSPC in the Bahamas for $5.1 million. Bryn Kenney shipped the largest Aussie Millions in history. Just before the WSOP, Daniel Negreanu stepped down after 12 years as a sponsored pro and ambassador for PokerStars. Gianluca 'Tankanza' Speranza won the SCOOP Main Event in back-to-back years.

Wednesday December 25, 2019 at 1:28 pm
Merry Christmas and Happy Holidaze!

From everyone here at Club Poker, we want to wish you a joyful and bountiful holiday season. Merry Christmas and do not forget that the Winter Series kicks off today on PokerStars with 242 tournaments and $50 million in guaranteed prize pools. The new year is just around the corner, so start thinking about your 2020 poker resolutions.

Tuesday December 24, 2019 at 10:32 pm
Oklahoma Johnny Hale passes away at 92

Oklahoma Johnny Hale -- an old school poker player, author, and gambler -- passed away at the age of 92. Oklahoma Johnny worked diligently to bring players into the game of poker over the last several decades. He's also the author of the 1999 book "The Life and Times of a Gentleman Gambler: Oklahoma Johnny Hale on Poker and Las Vegas".

Wednesday December 18, 2019 at 12:13 am
Mikalai Pobal wins 2019 EPT Prague for €1,005,600

Belarus' Mikalai Pobal picked off Hungarian pro, Norbert Szecsi, to win the 2019 EPT Prague. Pobal faded a field of 1,154 runners to win €1 million and become the latest champion on the European Poker Tour. Pobal joined Vicky Coren as the only dual winner on the EPT. Pobal shipped the 2012 EPT Barcelona and waited seven years to take down his second EPT crown.

Saturday December 14, 2019 at 11:08 pm
PokerStars Winter Series begins on December 25

PokerStars will host their third-largest online series of the year with their annual PokerStars Winter Series, which begins on December 25 and lasts nearly three weeks with over 242 tournaments with $50 million in guaranteed prize pools including a special Sunday Million with a $3 million guarantee. At least 34 events have a modest buy-in of $5.50, while 47 events are catered for high-stakes players with buy-ins costing $1,000 or higher. The Main Event has three tiers with $55, $530, and $5,300 price points.

Thursday December 12, 2019 at 11:43 pm
2020 WSOP will run May 26 to July 15

The World Series of Poker announced the overall dates for the 51st installment of the WSOP at the Rio Casino in Las Vegas. The 2020 WSOP will begin on May 26 and run through July 15. The prestigious $10,000 buy-in Main Event kicks off with four opening flights starting on Day 1A and concluding with Day 1B on July 4. Despite the rumors, the WSOP will remain at the Rio Casino for at least one more running.

Free tournaments and added prizes

The Club Poker organizes freerolls and special tournaments with added prizes.
To qualify for free, register on our poker partners websites: