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9 Movies to Watch if You Like Martin Scorsese’s ‘Casino’

Welcome to Movie DNA, a column that recognizes the direct and indirect cinematic roots of both new and classic movies. Learn some film history, become a more well-rounded viewer, and enjoy like-minded works of the past. This entry recommends movies to watch after Martin Scorsese’s Casino.

You can’t beat Martin Scorsese at his own game. The filmmaker has an oeuvre rich with everything from horror to romance. But it’s undeniable that he’s known best for his crime dramas. He’s excelled in this genre, making his mark on cinema with unforgettable gangster chronicles and world-class antiheroes. One of his most formidable in this department is the 1995 epic Casino.

Inspired by the true story of mafia associate Frank Rosenthal, the film stars Robert De Niro as Sam “Ace” Rothstein, a handicapper turned casino manager. It chronicles the rise and fall of Ace, his conniving pal Nicky (Joe Pesci, naturally), and his hustler wife Ginger (Sharon Stone) against the backdrop of a once glorious empire in the glowing lights of the Nevada desert.

While often compared to Scorsese’s other ’90s mob hit, Goodfellas, the truth is that Casino has a unique level of extravagance and an unparalleled degree of cruelty at its harshest moments. No matter how any quibbling about rankings shakes out, Casino is a movie that could never be duplicated by another filmmaker.

Still, that doesn’t mean it’s not without its own influences and precedents, or that it’s not built upon a rich foundation of Vegas epics and mob masterworks. There are a lot of films that fit into these categories,

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