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Please try again later. Kindle Edition Verified Purchase. If you read "Wiseguy" and want more of the same kind of true-life crime stories, this is a worthy follow-up to Pileggi's other book.

The same kind of thievery and bloody violence and more tales from the mafia is what this book is about, and a lot more interesting then the movie.

It is like goodfellas meets Vegas. If you have seen the movie Casino, it tells slot more in depth as to the history of Anthony Spilotro and Lefty Rosenthal.

Mass Market Paperback Verified Purchase. If you have seen the movie Casino you need to read the book. There are so many details contained in the book that you wont find in the movie.

From his start as a bookmaker to running several Las Vegas casinos. From his battles with the government to be able to run the casinos and the investigations into the mobs connections in the casino skims.

If you take Scorcese, DeNiro, Pesci, and give them 3 hours to work with, it's a given they'll deliver a film that's both riveting and memorable.

Casino is such a film. But, near the end of the film, DeNiro's character says something that can only be understood fully by someone who lived during that period.

In a way, it was a compliment to the mob-controlled system. Simply put, during the era of mob control, visitors to casinos were treated royally - at best, like kings and queens - at worst, like "guests.

In short, the mob knew how to treat people. Rude employees didn't remain employees for very long. But when the corporations took control, casino visitors became nothing more than numbers on a balance sheet.

And in some cases, employee rudeness was elevated to an art form. Odds have always favored "the house. I read Wiseguy from Nicholas Pileggi and loved the book, though it was spot on with the movie Goodfellas with a few minor exceptions.

The book Casino does however differ greatly from the movie of the same name, so it was much more enjoyable for me.

Certainly the basics are still there, but many additional stories, altered stories and the timeline is a little off from the movie.

Pileggi writes well and does great research. It was amazing that Pesci and Stone looked just like the real life people. DeNiro wasn't even close, but he did a good job.

I have enjoyed watching Casino 5 or 6 times, no one would argue it is a masterpiece, however, Pileggi's book discloses so much more, fleshing out the characters, revealing their true natures and interrelationships.

Until reading the book, I always felt sympathy for Rothstien Rosenthal , a perfectionistic genius whose only real crime seemed to be turning a blind eye to the skimming maybe the investors lost a bit, but everyone "got fat" Instead he was quite ruthless and had no problem threatening the Stardust's owner, Glick, with death.

Birds of a feather, and all that. Soon, anyone who presents a problem for Glick dies, because of the connection between the Teamsters' loan that financed Glick's purchase of the casinos and the skim.

It is an incredible story, and if the movie intrigues you, you may really appreciate the added details provided by the book. I loathe the inevitable comparisons made between "Casino" and "Goodfellas".

That's where the similarities end. Ginger then approaches Nicky for help in getting her valuables from her and Sam's shared safety deposit box, and the two start an affair.

Sam discovers this after finding Amy tied to her bed by Ginger, who is with Nicky at his restaurant. Sam disowns Ginger, as does Nicky.

A furious and drunk Ginger crashes her car into Sam's driveway, making a scene, and retrieves the key to their deposit box after distracting the attending police.

Even though she succeeds in taking all of the money from the safety deposit box, she is arrested by the FBI as a material witness.

The FBI moves in and closes the casino. Green decides to cooperate with the authorities. Piscano dies of a heart attack in front of his wife upon observing federal agents discover his notebook.

Nicky flees Las Vegas before he can be caught. The bosses are arrested and put on trial and decide to eliminate anyone involved in the scheme to prevent them from testifying.

Among those killed are three casino executives, Teamsters head Andy Stone, and money courier John Nance. Ginger travels to Los Angeles and ultimately dies of a drug overdose in a motel.

Sam himself is almost killed by a car bomb and suspects Nicky was behind it. Before Sam can take revenge, Nicky and Dominick are ambushed by Frankie and their own crew, beaten, and buried alive in a cornfield, the bosses' having had enough of Nicky's behavior and suspecting his role in Sam's car bombing.

With the Mob now out of power, the old casinos are purchased by big corporations and demolished. The corporations build new and gaudier attractions, which Sam laments are not the same as when the Mafia was in control.

Sam subsequently retires to San Diego and continues to live as a sports handicapper for the Mob, in his own words, ending up "right back where I started".

The research for Casino began when screenwriter Nicholas Pileggi read a report from the Las Vegas Sun about a domestic argument between Frank "Lefty" Rosenthal , a casino figure, and his wife Geri McGee , a former topless dancer.

Argent was owned by Allen Glick, but the casino was believed to be controlled by various organized crime families from the Midwest.

This skimming operation, when uncovered by the FBI, was the largest ever exposed. Pileggi contacted Scorsese about taking the lead of the project, which became known as Casino.

Scorsese and Pileggi collaborated on the script for five months, towards the end of Some characters were combined, and parts of the story were set in Kansas City instead of Chicago.

A problem emerged when they were forced to refer to Chicago as "back home" and use the words "adapted from a true story" instead of "based on a true story".

They also decided to simplify the script, so that the character of Sam "Ace" Rothstein only worked at the Tangiers Casino, in order to show a glimpse of the trials involved in operating a Mafia-run casino hotel without overwhelming the audience.

The scene was too detailed, so they changed the sequence to show the explosion of Sam's car and him flying into the air before hovering over the flames in slow motion—like a soul about to go straight down to hell.

The fun is over February 13, — No, you got only my ass And that's what they want Now one glitch gonna blow everything They have been caught So gruesome and so nasty Feb 21, P.

Here is a book that the movie with the same title was based on. Of course the book goes into more detail about the life of Lefty Rosenthal.

Starting from his childhood through his time in Vegas. Overall this is a good book with the parts of Vegas bring back memories of the old casinos that are no longer there.

It was also amazing how at one time he was running the book for four casinos. This book has a lot of details and history that was interesting to read.

I also remember reading about the fra Here is a book that the movie with the same title was based on. I also remember reading about the framer who found the bodies in his field years later and they turned out to be that of Tony Spilotro, and that of his brother many, many years after he went missing from Vegas.

Overall it was a good story about old Vegas. I got this book from netgalley. I gave it 4 stars. Follow us at www. Nicholas Pileggi uses first-hand accounts to cobble together a chronicle of the rise and fall of mob influence in Las Vegas, centered around an expert gambler named Frank "Lefty" Rosenthal, who oversaw the casino skimming operations, and his childhood friend Tony Spilotro, who acted as an enforcer for the mob.

Being that Casino is one of my favorite Scorsesi films, I was interested in reading about the real life figures the characters were based on Nicholas Pileggi uses first-hand accounts to cobble together a chronicle of the rise and fall of mob influence in Las Vegas, centered around an expert gambler named Frank "Lefty" Rosenthal, who oversaw the casino skimming operations, and his childhood friend Tony Spilotro, who acted as an enforcer for the mob.

Being that Casino is one of my favorite Scorsesi films, I was interested in reading about the real life figures the characters were based on.

While the names in the film were changed Lefty became "Ace" and Tony became "Nicky" I was surprised by how closely the movie stuck to the actual events.

The film, though, benefited from the fictitious POV of Nicky, whereas the book wasn't so lucky as the real life Tony Spilotro much like his filmic counterpart - spoilers was murdered before he could ever have the opportunity to tell his side of the story.

Anything we know about Tony is gleaned from the people who best knew him. As it is this, the book is very interesting at parts, but also felt a bit slow.

This is one of those rare moments where I'd advise people to see the movie instead. Even if the film sensationalizes the true events to a degree, it's mostly faithful, and just much more entertaining.

Another case of the book being better than the movie. Sometimes movies just don't have the time to really explain the characters and their situations.

For example, although it is said that Geri Rosenthal habitually used alcohol and drugs in the movie although they didn't use her real name, of course , they never mentioned that she was also helping out some of her family members, like her year old daughter, her sister, and her mother.

What I thought was amazing was how much money was moving th Another case of the book being better than the movie. What I thought was amazing was how much money was moving through Vegas, even back in the 60's and 70's.

No wonder the crime syndicates foamed at the mouth over that place. Another thing that the movie never addressed was how many other casinos in Vegas were being skimmed on a regular basis.

In addition to The Stardust, the "takes" at Tropicana and The Sands were getting skimmed during those times - in addition to a lot of other smaller places.

This was a very good book that I would recommend highly. However, if you have a problem with profanity, you may want to reconsider reading it.

Wer den gleichnamigen, ziemlich bildstarken Film kennt, wird überrascht sein, im Guten wie im schlechten. Dank der Kenntnis der Vorlage, die ohne den Film und die Möglichkeit der Quellen die Stars zu treffen, nie entstanden wäre, lassen sich die Zusammenhänge leichter nachvollziehen.

Viele Informanten ist gleichbedeutend mit ständigen Perspektivwechseln, das erschwert die Identifikation mit den P Wer den gleichnamigen, ziemlich bildstarken Film kennt, wird überrascht sein, im Guten wie im schlechten.

Dafür werden die Zusammenhänge des Geschäfts nachvollziehbarer. Trotzdem keine allzu sinnfällige Lektüre, visuell tut sich da gar nichts, wenn man nicht gerade den Film gesehen hat.

Kein Wunder, dass der Kerl so nett und normal rüber kommt. If you saw the movie based on this book it is a must read.

The town was simpler then. No stop lights on L V Blvd, ah, the good old days how I miss them, and nothing much beyond Tropicana.

This is the Las Vegas when the mob was there and the police were none too polite if you showed a shady side. To this day public employees are fingerprinted.

After seeing the movie my sister remarked, "The book wasn't that violent, was it? It takes this book to give you the real names, actions an If you saw the movie based on this book it is a must read.

It takes this book to give you the real names, actions and outcomes in clinical and fascinating detail.

You will notice where film and fact deviate. Pileggi interviewed the few "surviving" participants and came up with a compelling book.

Geri McGee, "Lefty" Rosenthal's wife was a dittzy bimbo who slept around, and he loved her to distraction. Tony Spilatro and his brother did end-up face down in a cornfield.

What we think of cliche sometimes comes out to be the real thing Sep 17, Johnny Moscato rated it it was ok. After reading and loving Wiseguy, Casino was a huge disappointment.

The movie was a million times better. I'm not even sure how the movie is based on this book. Even setting the movie aside the book is boring and overflowing with names.

The only way to keep all the names straight would be to write them all down to reference as you read. The writing skips from one person's perspective to another's so quickly and often that it's confusing and you have to keep going back to figure out who's being After reading and loving Wiseguy, Casino was a huge disappointment.

The writing skips from one person's perspective to another's so quickly and often that it's confusing and you have to keep going back to figure out who's being quoted.

Content-wise, the book is boring. There's only two stories- bad guys beating their women and stealing from casinos- repeated over and over and over.

Every time you think the story is building to something interesting, it just turns out to be the same old junk. Save yourself the time- watch the movie, pass on the book.

Dec 27, Andy Cooper rated it it was ok. This is an overrated book. But don't worry, all is not lost. It just needs to be re-purposed and moved into a different genre.

I am putting in a recommendation to officially change the title to The Encyclopedia of Mafia Run Casinos. If you are looking for a well told story, then go somewhere else.

Preferably back into Mario Puzo novels. On the other hand if you want to read a hastily put together story built by stacking facts and miscellaneous information on top of one another, then look no furth This is an overrated book.

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Casino Royale - What’s The Difference? The authors seem enamored of their subject's casual violence. This page was last edited on 8 Novemberat Now one glitch gonna blow everything This is where he developed his Nicholas Pileggi is best known for writing the book Wiseguywhich he adapted into the movie Goodfellasand for writing the book and screenplay Casino. If you have seen the movie Casino you need to read the book. Kindle Edition Verified Purchase. It flows very well but I did find it hard to remember who was talking at some points. Helm premier then kidnaps their daughter, Amy, takes her to Los Angeles, and plans to flee to Europe with her and Lester. How Vegas wie kann ich ps4 online spielen from being run by corrupt gangsters to being run by corrupt corporations. Shopbop Designer Fashion Brands. There's only two stories- bad guys beating Sweet Surprise 3 Reels Slot Machine Online ᐈ Pragmatic Play™ Casino Slots women and stealing from casinos- repeated over and over and over. Wikiquote has quotations related to: Pileggi clearly describes the power struggles between the various players in great detail. StarGames is displayed in: Nun möchten wir uns dem Book of Dead Slots selbst widmen. Der Automat Book of Dead nimmt dabei einen besonderen Stellenwert ein. Wochenendauszahlungen Viele ausgefallene Aktionen Abwechslungsreiches und gutes Spielangebot 24 Wartezeit vor Auszahlung. Insgesamt gibt es fünf Walzen mit jeweils drei Symbolen, die mit einem Klick auf den Start-Button in Bewegung gesetzt werden. Dass gleiche gilt für das Vera und John Casino, hier gibt es bis zu Euro Bonus, es wird PayPal akzeptiert und die Auszahlungen gehen schnell vonstatten. Casino Industry in Asia Pacific: Liegt er richtig, verdoppelt er seinen Gewinn, liegt er daneben, ist der Gewinn verloren. Schnell und einfach anmelden und die neuesten Casino-Bonusangebote sofort per E-Mail erhalten! So kann es zum Beispiel sein, dass er die Farbe einer Karte erraten muss. Grosvenor Casinos is part of the Rank Group. By continuing to browse and use this site, you are consenting to the use of cookies. Above the game screen you will be able to see the cards which you drew in the last six Gamble Games.

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After seeing the movie my sister remarked, "The book wasn't that violent, was it? It takes this book to give you the real names, actions an If you saw the movie based on this book it is a must read.

It takes this book to give you the real names, actions and outcomes in clinical and fascinating detail. You will notice where film and fact deviate.

Pileggi interviewed the few "surviving" participants and came up with a compelling book. Geri McGee, "Lefty" Rosenthal's wife was a dittzy bimbo who slept around, and he loved her to distraction.

Tony Spilatro and his brother did end-up face down in a cornfield. What we think of cliche sometimes comes out to be the real thing Sep 17, Johnny Moscato rated it it was ok.

After reading and loving Wiseguy, Casino was a huge disappointment. The movie was a million times better. I'm not even sure how the movie is based on this book.

Even setting the movie aside the book is boring and overflowing with names. The only way to keep all the names straight would be to write them all down to reference as you read.

The writing skips from one person's perspective to another's so quickly and often that it's confusing and you have to keep going back to figure out who's being After reading and loving Wiseguy, Casino was a huge disappointment.

The writing skips from one person's perspective to another's so quickly and often that it's confusing and you have to keep going back to figure out who's being quoted.

Content-wise, the book is boring. There's only two stories- bad guys beating their women and stealing from casinos- repeated over and over and over.

Every time you think the story is building to something interesting, it just turns out to be the same old junk. Save yourself the time- watch the movie, pass on the book.

Dec 27, Andy Cooper rated it it was ok. This is an overrated book. But don't worry, all is not lost. It just needs to be re-purposed and moved into a different genre.

I am putting in a recommendation to officially change the title to The Encyclopedia of Mafia Run Casinos. If you are looking for a well told story, then go somewhere else.

Preferably back into Mario Puzo novels. On the other hand if you want to read a hastily put together story built by stacking facts and miscellaneous information on top of one another, then look no furth This is an overrated book.

On the other hand if you want to read a hastily put together story built by stacking facts and miscellaneous information on top of one another, then look no further.

It reads more like a mixture of an MTV True Life episode mixed in with some History Channel narration than it does like a story about an ambitious mobsters rise and fall in the land of ol' Las Vegas.

The story and the characters are there, but you'll have to go digging for them if you want to find the bones of things. In this book, Pileggi relates the story of the last days of mob control of Las Vegas casinos, specifically the Stardust.

If you have seen the movie Casino, you know the general story but the names and many facts were changed. Pileggi does not let his writing get in the way of a good story.

The book is made up primarily of interviews and long stretches of story-telling by "Lefty" Rosenthal himself, various mob informants, and an assortment of federal and state law enforcement agents.

Although th In this book, Pileggi relates the story of the last days of mob control of Las Vegas casinos, specifically the Stardust. Although the last chapter is somewhat in need of an update Las Vegas has reinvented itself numerous times since the end of the mob and the "high roller" culture , it was a nice coda.

Too dry and force. The mob would not approve. Dec 30, Saman Kashi added it Shelves: Sep 24, Kris rated it really liked it.

I knew the minute Sharon Stone threw those chips in the air in the movie Casino that I was going to love this movie. That love affair has never ended and then the book popped up on Bookbub and I was thoroughly excited!

So much so that I bought the book, watched the movie, read the book and then watched the movie again. One main difference is that the book actually uses all the real names of the individuals.

This allows the reader to set off exploring more about the real people online and pull up I knew the minute Sharon Stone threw those chips in the air in the movie Casino that I was going to love this movie.

This allows the reader to set off exploring more about the real people online and pull up pictures to match names and faces. Of course, you can always use Pesci, DeNiro and Stone as the faces and still be ok.

But in the glory days, it was organized crime, primarily out of Los Angeles and Chicago, who owned Vegas.

Lefty Rosenthal was a handicapper, bookmaker and odds man, trusted by the mob to go out to Vegas and run the Stardust and Hacienda Hotels.

The first part of the book introduces Lefty and his background as well as his best friend, Tony Spilotro, a well-known Chicago mobster.

After Lefty moves out to Vegas, he meets Geri McGee aka Ginger a well-known casino hustler and escort who works the punters as they come in to Vegas.

This despite her undying love for her ex-boyfriend, baby daddy Lenny. Tony Spilotro was sent to Vegas to keep an eye on Lefty and to secure their interests in the casino.

But Tony, cut free from his leash and keepers in Chicago, became a one crew crime spree. Bringing in his own people, he did burglaries, murders, jewelry heists, armed robbery, loan sharking etc.

The town was his for the taking and he took it all — including Geri. The movie closely followed the book so it will not disappoint film fans.

In fact, it will enhance the viewing experience and make you want to watch it all again — twice! Most of this book is gleaned from personal interviews with questionable characters, but how else would anyone get a handle on how the Mafia ran Las Vegas for 40 years?

Nicholas Pileggi does yeoman's work tracking down the main cops and culprits to paint a vivid picture of the casino industry when it was little short of a mob-front.

The book centers on the friendship of "Lefty" Frank Rosenthal, a world-renowned sports-handicapper and gambler when that was still a real federal crime, and Tony "the Most of this book is gleaned from personal interviews with questionable characters, but how else would anyone get a handle on how the Mafia ran Las Vegas for 40 years?

The book centers on the friendship of "Lefty" Frank Rosenthal, a world-renowned sports-handicapper and gambler when that was still a real federal crime, and Tony "the Ant" Spilotro, a small-time thug with an outsized ego.

They both grew up on the streets of West Side Chicago and learned to make their own gray or black-market incomes before moving on to bigger things.

When a former real-estate broker named Allen Glick bought the Stardust casino in using Teamster Central States Pension funds of which the Minneapolis, Kansas City, and Chicago mobs all had a piece , the mafia let him know that they were going to be effective owners, and Lefty would be their procounsel and effective manager.

Tony meanwhile moved out to Vegas as the head of a crew who would bust into safes and run small-time fleecing operations, but his notoriety eventually hurt both Lefty's and the mob's prospects.

Yet before an unrelated Kansas-City murder case, the insane note-keeping habits of Kansas mobman Carl Deluna, and bug opened up the whole operation, the mafia in Las Vegas was "skimming" billions a year from casinos and running much of the town.

Of course, this book was later turned into a classic Martin Scorsese movie of the same name, which is very faithful to it, but the book does give one a better window into the mechanics and funding of the mob, and how it grew to almost unimaginable wealth and power.

It's a great story. May 30, Johnathon rated it really liked it. Pileggi does a great job getting interviews and stories from his subjects, from Lefty, the FBI and various other mobsters, and let's them tell the story.

It is a story so crazy it has to be true Lefty at one point had a popular talk show where he interviewed O. The result is an enjoyable page turner well-worth reading, but not a classic true crime novel on how the mob left Las Vegas.

Jun 26, Debbie rated it did not like it Shelves: Scorscese's work is infinitely more interesting, but it's a fictional account based on this book.

The best description is that it is bare bones. I kept wanting broader descriptions and background. Perhaps my dissatisfaction stems from my recent reading of various types of Pulitzer Prize winning non-fiction titles.

For instance, Pileggi quotes Rosenthal as saying, after Jerry's passing, that lots of folks suspected him of killing her or arranging her death.

But he paid a considerable sum to have Scorscese's work is infinitely more interesting, but it's a fictional account based on this book. But he paid a considerable sum to have determined her actual cause of death.

That's all that was said. You hear what is missing, too, don't you. The full book was that way. An excellent story about the mobs influence in Las Vegas, centering around two characters, Frank "Lefty" Rosenthal, professional gambler and casino manager, and Anthony Spilotro, Chicago mobster.

The story recounts the teamster financing of casinos, the business fronts, the mobster bosses, the murders, the skim, the thievery, the corruptions, and how it all fell apart with multiple players going to jail, or being murdered by their own associates.

The book was a good read, and the movie rendition An excellent story about the mobs influence in Las Vegas, centering around two characters, Frank "Lefty" Rosenthal, professional gambler and casino manager, and Anthony Spilotro, Chicago mobster.

The book was a good read, and the movie rendition reflected the book's story. What an insane book!

It's crazy thinking how the Mafia was operating there. Made me think a lot about Vegas Anyone wanting to know some Mafia history about Vegas would find this book a must read.

This is one of those times when I'm not sure which is better-the book or the movie because they are both sensational. Aug 04, Jcshumate rated it liked it.

It's funny that the book that provided the narrative for an awesomely overstuffed three-hour film epic could be this short and breezy and still provide more detail than the film.

Books and movies are different from each other I guess. I think I liked Wiseguy more but i read that 20 years ago, which is weird to say out loud.

Compelling read Given Casino is one of my favorite movies, I thought I should at least read the book. It flows very well but I did find it hard to remember who was talking at some points.

A lot of characters sometimes made it hard to follow. But, congratulations to Mr Pileggi for documenting a very interesting part of Las Vegas history.

This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here. Hearing the real names instead of made up names in the movie.

Liked how the movie was pretty true to the book. Because they were so similar the book was not as exciting. It's always better to read books first then watch movie.

Tony Spilotro was a crazy SOB. I found his stories to be the most entertaining. He did not care what anyone thought of him. I want to read Enforcer now.

May 12, Ben Tuthill rated it liked it. Pileggi does another good novel. Casino is a good story about the mob in Vegas.

As others have said the movie follows the book well but not exactly, the book goes into more detail and the movie changed some things to make it better for the screen.

Overall a good story but it does get bogged down in spots. Although interesting and true, there are no good guys in this story only degrees of bad.

Enjoyable As a fan of the movie, I bought this to read while having some down time, a little escapism! Read reviews that mention las vegas sharon stone joe pesci robert de niro martin scorsese robert deniro james woods ace rothstein true story great movie nicky santoro nicholas pileggi raging bull based on a true blu ray organized crime lefty rosenthal must see niro and pesci rise and fall.

Showing of 2, reviews. Top Reviews Most recent Top Reviews. There was a problem filtering reviews right now.

Please try again later. Kindle Edition Verified Purchase. If you read "Wiseguy" and want more of the same kind of true-life crime stories, this is a worthy follow-up to Pileggi's other book.

The same kind of thievery and bloody violence and more tales from the mafia is what this book is about, and a lot more interesting then the movie.

It is like goodfellas meets Vegas. If you have seen the movie Casino, it tells slot more in depth as to the history of Anthony Spilotro and Lefty Rosenthal.

Mass Market Paperback Verified Purchase. If you have seen the movie Casino you need to read the book. There are so many details contained in the book that you wont find in the movie.

From his start as a bookmaker to running several Las Vegas casinos. From his battles with the government to be able to run the casinos and the investigations into the mobs connections in the casino skims.

If you take Scorcese, DeNiro, Pesci, and give them 3 hours to work with, it's a given they'll deliver a film that's both riveting and memorable.

Casino is such a film. But, near the end of the film, DeNiro's character says something that can only be understood fully by someone who lived during that period.

In a way, it was a compliment to the mob-controlled system. Simply put, during the era of mob control, visitors to casinos were treated royally - at best, like kings and queens - at worst, like "guests.

In short, the mob knew how to treat people. Rude employees didn't remain employees for very long. But when the corporations took control, casino visitors became nothing more than numbers on a balance sheet.

And in some cases, employee rudeness was elevated to an art form. Odds have always favored "the house. I read Wiseguy from Nicholas Pileggi and loved the book, though it was spot on with the movie Goodfellas with a few minor exceptions.

The book Casino does however differ greatly from the movie of the same name, so it was much more enjoyable for me. Certainly the basics are still there, but many additional stories, altered stories and the timeline is a little off from the movie.

Pileggi writes well and does great research. It was amazing that Pesci and Stone looked just like the real life people. DeNiro wasn't even close, but he did a good job.

I have enjoyed watching Casino 5 or 6 times, no one would argue it is a masterpiece, however, Pileggi's book discloses so much more, fleshing out the characters, revealing their true natures and interrelationships.

Until reading the book, I always felt sympathy for Rothstien Rosenthal , a perfectionistic genius whose only real crime seemed to be turning a blind eye to the skimming maybe the investors lost a bit, but everyone "got fat" Instead he was quite ruthless and had no problem threatening the Stardust's owner, Glick, with death.

Birds of a feather, and all that. Soon, anyone who presents a problem for Glick dies, because of the connection between the Teamsters' loan that financed Glick's purchase of the casinos and the skim.

It is an incredible story, and if the movie intrigues you, you may really appreciate the added details provided by the book.

I loathe the inevitable comparisons made between "Casino" and "Goodfellas". That's where the similarities end.

Both films tackle stories in the criminal milieu and succeed in gripping the audience. Scorsese manages to make this film a fast-paced experience despite a nearly three hour running time.

He's ably abetted by some snappy editing by Thelma Schoonmaker, gorgeous cinematography by Robert Richardson, and good sense of the era love the cars and clothes.

Impeccable song choices on Scorsese's part on the soundtrack. The film is fascinating in how it portrays Las Vegas as a shimmering city which under it's surface is motivated by greed and avarice, which in turn breeds paranoia.

Just ask the eye in the sky. The first half of the film concerns itself with how some Midwest mobsters infiltrate a Vegas casino.

The second half shows how overreaching causes their downfall. DeNiro is superb as the oddsmaker who goes on to manage a casino only to be brought down by his own vanity.

Pesci is equally fine as the thug who wants to make Vegas his personal playground. Probably the best performance in the film belongs to Sharon Stone as DeNiro's wife who is at heart a hustler.

This is a difficult part to pull off because her's is essentially a character motivated by pure greed but Stone manages to convey the pathos to make her sympathetic.

I think Scorsese is a victim of his own success because this film was initially given lukewarm response from the critics and public alike. Fortunately, time has been kind to "Casino".

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