If you are in the mood to watch a casino-inspired flick, your attention might have turned to Poker Face, which was written and directed by Russell Crowe, who also happens to star in the movie. However, before you give it 95 minutes of your precious time, you might want to learn more about the thriller and if it is worth a watch. If so, read this helpful guide to Poker Face.

What’s the Plot?

Casino games are the perfect premise for an intense, exciting environment for a thrilling film. If you have ever played the likes of poker or blackjack online, you will know they are as tense as they are thrilling, and Poker Face attempts to deliver the same feeling and atmosphere.

If you have yet to see the flick, it follows the story of Jake Foley (Russell Crowe), a tech billionaire, who invites his childhood friends to a jaw-dropping retreat for a game of no-limit Texas Hold’em poker with a $5 million buy-in and the winner takes all, which is $25 million. However, as the evening wears on, his real motive starts to unravel, as he is out for revenge and eager for them to share the secrets they have been holding onto throughout their lives. Yet, thieves interrupt the game and the group must stick together to survive.


Who Stars in the Film?

Poker Face has an enviable cast. In addition to starring Academy Award winner Russell Crowe, the Australian-American flick stars Liam Hemsworth as Michael Nankervis, and he is joined by his real-life sister-in-law, Elsa Pataky, who plays Penelope. Yet, if you are watching it for Hemsworth, you might be best turning to another movie he stars in, as his appearance is fleeting. Other notable cast members include American rapper RZA as Andrew Johnson and Australian national treasure Steve Bastoni as Paul Muccino.

When Was Poker Face Released?

Poker Face had a limited theatrical release in November 2022 and was available on demand a few days later. During its short time at the movies, it grossed an impressive $2.6 million worldwide.

What Did the Critics Say?

Despite its high-stakes game of poker, bitter revenge plot, and attempted theft, the film received mixed reviews from critics and fans. At present, the movie has a 9% score for 34 reviews on Rotten Tomatoes and a 35% audience score for more than 100 reviews.

The movie faired a little better on IMDB, earning a score of 5.1/10 from 9,600 reviews. Also, Metacritic gave the flick a score of 43 out of 100, which is based on ten critics’ reviews, and it has a user score of 5.2, indicating mixed or average reviews.

Also, respected film critic Glenn Kenny said the following in his review on Roger Ebert, “Poker Face wants to be an awful lot of different things over the course of a commendably short running time.”

Why Did It Receive Mixed Reviews?

Poker Face certainly had the potential to be an edge-of-your-seat flick. However, it was let down by unnecessary dialogue, strange casting choices, and a confusing plot. For instance, Liam Hemsworth’s character plays one of Russell Crowe’s childhood friends, despite being 26 years younger than the Oscar winner. Also, the entire poker game seems to take place over one hand. Also, the film cannot seem to work out what it is, as one minute it is about revenge, and the next Jake and his friends experience a stand-off against armed robbers stealing his rare art collection.

Where Can I Watch Poker Face?

Poker Face is available to stream on various platforms, including Hulu, Prime Video, Apple TV, and Vudu Fandango. Also, you can buy and rent the flick on Amazon, Google Play, and iTunes.

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