[[caption-width-right:280:Take it down.]]

'''''Rounders''''' (1998) is about the underground world of {{poker}} in UsefulNotes/NewYorkCity starring Creator/MattDamon as Mike [=McDermott=] and Creator/EdwardNorton as Worm and a bit part for Creator/JohnMalkovich as the Russian gangster Teddy KGB. This movie has become a cult classic, especially because of the current popularity of Texas Hold 'Em style poker.

The plot involves Edward Norton's character Worm being heavily in debt to gangsters, so how do they decide to pay off their debt? Why playing poker of course.

!! This movie contains examples of:

* BigApplesauce
* CheatersNeverProsper: Subverted, one of them doesn't want to cheat, they get caught anyway.
* CyclicNationalFascination: This film, along with the invention of the hole-card camera (which made it possible for Poker to truly become a spectator sport) and the rise of online poker sites, is credited with the sudden rise in popularity of Texas Hold 'Em Poker at the start of the 21st century.
* DuelToTheDeath: Strongly implied in the climactic match, though only on Mike's side. If Mike failed to win enough to cover the debt, Grama was present to make his bones with Teddy's organization - and the most common way to do that was killing someone. He would have ''really'' preferred killing Worm, but was quite content to make his bones with Mike. [[spoiler: When Teddy lost, he told his mooks to pay Mike off and let him go, leaving a disappointed Grama to flip a table and stalk off, bones ummade.]]
* EvilDebtCollector: Grama
* FakeRussian: Teddy KGB, as played by JohnMalkovich.
* FallenOnHardTimesJob: How do you know when a guy's recently been wiped out at the table? He's driving a delivery truck.
* FixingTheGame: Worm just can't help himself. It's like Chronic Cheating Disorder.
* KarmaHoudini: [[spoiler:Grama, who is a thoroughly mean and sadistic brute. In the end the only comeuppance he gets is that he's cheated out of killing Worm - but in exchange he gets about sixty thousand dollars (the money Worm owed him, plus interest).]]
* LargeHam: Teddy KGB.
* NoHoldsBarredBeatdown: [[spoiler:Worm and Mike catch one when they get caught cheating in a game against state troopers.]]
* TheObstructiveLoveInterest: Jo, who spends most of her screen time acting cold and distrustful towards Mike.
* OldFriend: The basic relationship between Mike and Worm after Worm is released from prison.
* {{Poker}}: Just in case you hadn't noticed yet, this movie is about poker.
* TheMagicPokerEquation: In the last hand in the game against KGB at the beginning of the film.
* TooDumbToLive: Worm decides to cheat at poker in a room full of New York state cops. When he gets caught, the cops beat the shit out of him and Mike and take away all their winnings.
* SherlockScan: Mike, when reading the table at his law school professor's round, impressing everyone.
* StockFootage: From the World Series of Poker, specifically the 1988 main event's final hand between Johnny Chan and Erik Seidel. (Chan also makes a cameo.)
* TheTell: Mike figures out in the film's climactic poker match that Teddy [=KGB=]'s tell is linked to the Oreo cookies he always has: when he pulls apart a cookie but doesn't eat it, he has nothing and he's bluffing; when he does eat it, he really does have a winning hand. Mike, who needs to win ''quickly'', then reveals the tell to Teddy to rattle him into making a bigger mistake.
* VillainousBreakdown: [[spoiler:Teddy [=KGB=] really freaks out after experiencing a bad beat and losing the film's climactic poker match to Mike. Thankfully, he's honorable enough to recognize that he lost fair and square and he gives Mike his winnings rather than ordering his goons to beat Mike to a pulp.]]
* WeDoNotKnowEachOther: Mike and Worm use this trope when they work together at the same poker table several times throughout the movie. [[spoiler:This backfires in a major way during their final game, where Worm gets caught cheating when dealing a winning full house to Mike, thereby pissing off a room full of New York state cops.]]
* WomanScorned: Kind of. Mike's girlfriend Jo leaves him and takes most of their stuff from their cohabitated apartment after she finds out he's been playing cards again.
** It's mentioned that he lost all his money at least once before the start of the movie, so she is somewhat cold and untrusting right from the beginning. When she finally leaves it's mostly her stuff anyway. Still, though, he never gets with her again, and even their final words to each other are uneasy.
* WhatTheHellIsThatAccent: Teddy KGB is ostensibly Russian, but his accent appears to be an entity all its own. [[SoBadItsGood And yet it works.]]
* WorkOffTheDebt
* WorthyOpponent: When Mike beats Teddy KGB in the climactic poker game at the end of the movie, he treats Mike as this.
--> '''KGB:''' "He beat me. Straight up. Pay him. Pay that man his money."