Casino (film)

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Casino is a Academy Award Nominated 1995 crime drama film. Sam "Ace" Rothstein is called by the mob to oversee the day to day operation at the Tangiers Casino in Las Vegas. Nicky Santoro, an enforcer, is sent by the mob to make sure the money is skimmed off the top, and that other mobsters and the casino are kept in line.

Directed by Martin Scorsese. Written by Nicholas Pileggi and Martin Scorsese.


No One Stays At The Top Forever (taglines)


Sam "Ace" Rothstein[edit]

  • When you love someone, you've gotta trust them. There's no other way. You've got to give them the key to everything that's yours. Otherwise, what's the point? And for a while, I believed that's the kind of love I had.
  • Before I got blown up or ran a casino, Ace Rothstein was one helluva handicapper, I can tell you that. I was so good that when I bet, I could change the odds for the entire country; I am not joking.
  • [About Nicky] No matter how big a guy might be, Nicky would take him on. You beat Nicky with fists, he comes back with a bat. You beat him with a knife, he comes back with a gun. And you beat him with a gun, you better kill him, because he’ll keep comin’ back and back until one of you is dead.
  • In the casino, the cardinal rule is to keep them playing, and keep them coming back. The longer they play, the more they lose. In the end, we get it all.
  • Meeting in the middle of the desert always made me nervous. It's a scary place. I heard about the holes in the desert and for all I know, there could have been a hole nearby with my name on it.
  • [to Ginger, about her and Lester planning to run away with Amy] I know that lousy moron had a good time. On my money. You might as well have slept him, which you probably did, anyway. You're looking at me a certain way. You're teary-eyed, I get it. You're a good actress, you know that? Good damn actress. You can't really get that pity out of people. I'm not a John, you understand? You always thought I was, but I'm not. I'm not a sucker. That filthy pimp con artist. He's lucky I didn't kill him last time. Lucky he's living. And if you had stayed with him, and you would have run away, you would have been dead, both of you. Dead. Dead.
  • After all the threats and all the garbage, it turned out Ginger didn't tell them anything. But by then, the Feds didn't need her, anyway. They had all the pieces they needed. And everybody began to tumble...one after the other, just like dominoes. Between Piscano complaining on a wire, between Nicky, Ginger, me and my license, paradise. We managed to really mess up a good thing.
  • After Ginger took off, she wasn't much help to anybody. Ginger is in a fleabag motel grasping for life She found some pimps, lowlifes, druggies and bikers in L.A.. And in a few months, they went through all the money and all the jewels. Ginger expires, falling to the floor After they found her body, I hired a private doctor to do another autopsy. He said they gave her a hot dose. In the end, all she had left was $3,600 in mint condition coins.
  • No matter what the Feds or the papers might've said about my car bombing, it was amateur night; you could tell. Whoever it was, they put the dynamite under the passenger side. But what they didn't know, what nobody outside the factory knew, was that that model car was made with a metal plate under the driver's seat. It's the only thing that saved my life. The bombing was never authorized, but I suspect I know who lit the fuse...and so did the powers that be.
  • The word was out. The bosses had enough of Nicky. They had enough. How much were they gonna take? So they made an example of him and his brother. They buried them while they were still breathing. They had other ideas for me.
  • The town will never be the same. After the Tangiers, the big corporations took it all over. Today, it looks like Disneyland. And while the kids play cardboard pirates, Mommy and Daddy drop the house payments and Junior's college money on the poker slots. In the old days, dealers knew your name, what you drank, what you played. Today, it's like checkin' into an airport. And if you order room service, you're lucky if you get it by Thursday. Today, it's all gone. You get a whale show up with four million in a suitcase, and some twenty-five-year-old hotel school kid is gonna want his social security number. Tangiers ad other classic casinos are show being detonated and demolished, then being replaced with newer, gaudier attractions such as the Luxor pyramid After the Teamsters got knocked out of the box, the corporations tore down practically every one of the old casinos. And where did the money come from to rebuild the pyramids? Junk bonds. But in the end, I wound up right back where I started. I could still pick winners, and I could still make money for all kinds of people back home. And why mess up a good thing? And that's that.

Nicky Santoro[edit]

  • [About the bosses] These old greaseballs may not look it, but believe me; these are the men who secretly control Las Vegas. Because they managed the Teamsters Union. The Teamsters Union was who you had to go to in order to borrow money to build a casino. And no one got approved for a loan from the Teamster's pension fund unless these guys in the room knew they were going to get their little suitcases.
  • [about Anthony Dogs' interrogation] To be truthful with you, I had to admire this fucking guy. He was one of the toughest Irishmen I ever met. This son of a bitch was tough. For two days and two fucking nights, we beat the shit out of this guy. I mean, we even stuck ice-picks in his balls. But he never talked. In the end, I had to put his fucking head in a vise.
  • Listen to me, Anthony. I got your head in a fucking vise. I'll squash your fuckin' head like a grapefruit if you don't give me a name. Don't make me have to do this, please. Don't make me be a bad guy, come on.
  • "Charlie M"? "Charlie M"?! You make me pop your fucking eye out of your head to protect that piece of shit?! "Charlie M"?! You dumb motherfucker!
  • I think that you've gotten the wrong impression about me. I think in all fairness, I should explain to you exactly what it is that I do. For instance, tomorrow morning, I'll get up nice and early, take a walk down over to the bank, walk in and see and uh, if you don't have my money for me, I'll crack your fucking head wide-open in front of everybody in the bank. And just about the time that I'm comin' out of jail, hopefully, you'll be comin' out of your coma. And guess what? I'll split your stinking head open again. 'Cause I'm fuckin' stupid. I don't give a fuck about jail. That's my business. That's what I do. And we know what you do, don't we, Charlie? You fuck people out of money and get away with it!
  • Hey, you fat Irish prick. You put my fucking money to sleep. You go get my money or I'll put your fucking brain to sleep.
  • You know I'm tryin' to put somethin' really big together out here. You know what I'm talkin' about, huh? You know! If you're actin' like this now, how can I depend on you?
  • You know, I don't wanna bring this up but you've been treating a lot of people with a lot of disrespect, even your own wife.
  • "[Watching the FBI plane overhead while golfing]" What the fuck is this? Where's this fuckin' guy gonna land, in the fairway? They're fucking agents Frankie, look at this ! $100 for whoever hits the plane.
  • [Chewing out Sam in the Nevada desert] Get this through your head, you Jew motherfucker, you. You only exist out here because of ME! That's the ONLY reason! Without me, you, personally, every fucking wiseguy still around is gonna take a piece of your fuckin' Jew ass! THEN where you gonna go?! You're fucking warned – don't ever go over my fuckin' head again! You motherfucker, you!
  • I used to send Marino back home with a piece of what I made. Not a big piece, but what did they know? They were 1500 miles away, and I don't know anyone who can see that far.
  • As much as they liked him, he wasn't one of us; he wasn't Italian. As far as they knew, he could've talked. Otherwise, Stoney might still be alive. The first one to skip was John Nance. He found a nice warm secluded place in Costa Rica. He thought nobody would find him there. But then his kid got nabbed by the Feds for drugs. And so, naturally, the bosses were afraid he'd come out of hiding just to save his kid and give 'em all up. So... [Two men come behind a bleeding John Nance and shoot him in the head] But anyway, they… you know, they all had to follow. Everybody went down. Before you knew it, anybody who knew anything wound up gettin' whacked.
  • It took months for everything to calm down. But finally, my guys got out on bail and the bosses wanted me to send my brother Dominick out to Vegas. Always the dollars. Always the fuckin' dollars. I mean it was still way too hot for me to even go near Vegas. So I set up a meeting with the guys way out in the sticks. I didn't want my brother to get fucked around. I mean what's right is right; they don't give a fuck about–URGGHH!!

Dialogue[edit]

Sam "Ace" Rothstein: [as narrator] Before I ever ran a casino or got myself blown up, Ace Rothstein was a helluva handicapper, I can tell you that. I was so good that when I bet, I can change the odds for every bookmaker in the country. I'm serious. I had it down so cold that I was given paradise on earth. I was given one of the biggest casinos in Las Vegas to run: the Tangiers, by the only kind of guys that can get you that kind of money. Sixty-two million seven hundred thousand dollars. I don't know all the details.
Nicky Santoro: [as narrator] Matter of fact, nobody knew all the details. But it should have been perfect. I mean he had me, Nicky Santoro, his best friend watching his hide. And he had Ginger, the woman he loved on his arm. But in the end, we fucked it all up. It should have been so sweet, too. But it turned out to be the last time that street guys like us were ever given anything that fuckin' valuable again.

Nicky Santoro: [as narrator] Keeping Remo happy with money was the strongest insurance policy.
[Sam hands Remo his gambling winnings]
Remo Gaggi: Son-of-a-bitch. How the hell did you get Oklahoma-Michigan? Nobody ever had Oklahoma-Mi... How the hell'd you do it?
Sam Rothstein: Well, that's why they get paid so well.
Remo Gaggi: You see? (chuckles) Never tells me nothin'! Ace, what do we got on for next week?
Sam Rothstein: Well, it's a little too early. I'd say Thursday would be good. I'll know by then. Is that all right?
Remo Gaggi: Thanks a lot, Ace.
Sam departs but Remo motions Nicky to be spoken to in private
Remo Gaggi: Hey, Nick. Vien acca. T'aggia parla. Nicky... See that guy? Keep a good eye on him. He's makin' a lot of money for us. And he's gonna continue makin' a lot of money for us, so keep a good eye on him. Not like your fuckin' friends out there, that... without brains. Okay?
Nicky Santoro: All right.
Remo Gammi: Uh-huh. Mi raccomando.
Nicky Santoro: [reaching down to touch Gaggi's money, joking with him] Want me to take this for you?
Nicky Santoro: [as narrator] Now, on top of everything else, I gotta make sure nobody fucks around with the Golden Jew.

Sam Rothstein {as narrator}: In Vegas, I had to keep a few juiced-in local cowboys working. They were close to the, you know, good old boys.
Sam Rothstein: Pay him six hundred a week, tell him to walk around and look smart.
Sam Rothstein {as narrator}: I mean, without us, these guys, they'd still be shovellin' mule shit.
Sam Rothstein: What is this mess? Ward, you have to keep a cleaner station. If you need Mr. Clean, just page him, all right?
Don Ward: It won't happen again, Sam.
Sam Rothstein: "Mr. Rothstein."
Don Ward: Mr. Rothstein. It won't happen again, Mr. Rothstein!
Sam and Billy depart slot machine area
Sam Rothstein: Is this guy just another dumb fuckin' white man, or what? What's his story?
Billy Sherbert: You need this guy.
Sam Rothstein: I can't get rid of him?
Billy Sherbert: He's juiced in. He's the County Commissioner's cousin.
Sam Rothstein: I wouldn't give the bum a mop job.

[A local cowboy with connections to the mob has been gambling in Sam's casino, ignoring the casino's rule against guests putting their feet up on the table.]
Sam Rothstein: I don't give a shit who he's connected to. Tell him to take his fucking feet off the table. What does he think this is, a goddamn sawdust joint?
Billy Sherbert: Sir, would you mind taking your feet off the table and put your shoes on, please?
Cowboy: (sighs) Yeah, I would mind. I'm having a bad night.
[Billy returns to Sam, who is watching from across the room.]
Billy Sherbert: Fucking asshole won't budge.
Sam Rothstein: Call security. [Billy leaves to call casino security; Sam approaches the cowboy himself.] How are you?
Cowboy: Good. How are you?
Sam Rothstein: Good. You want to do me a favor? You want to take your feet off the table and put your shoes back on?
Cowboy: Fuck you.
Sam Rothstein: [Pauses, then turns to the arriving security guards] I want you to exit this guy off the premises and I want you to exit him off his feet and use his head to open the fuckin door.
Security Guard: Sir, you're going to have to leave. You mind accompanying us outside?
Cowboy: Bullshit, I ain't going anywhere with you.
Security Guard: Bullshit, you're outta here, Cowboy!
[Four security guards grab the cowboy and carry him outside, ramming his head into the door to open it as Sam instructed.]
Cowboy: Fuck you! Fuck you!
Security Guard: Yeah?
Cowboy: Do you know who you're fucking with?! Huh?!! Do you?!
Security Guard: Now, move along.
Cowboy: [to Sam Rothstein] You fuckin' faggot! Do you know who you're fucking with?! [to security guards] Leave me alone!
Security Guard: Here we go.
Cowboy: You've gotta be kidding me!
Sam Rothstein {as narrator}: Sure enough, an hour later, I get a call.
Nicky Santoro: Ace, what happened over there? I mean, did you know that guy you threw out was with me?
Sam Rothstein: No, I didn't know that. But you know what he did?
Nicky Santoro: No.
Sam Rothstein: He insulted Billy. And then I walked over to him politely, and he tells me to go fuck myself.
Nicky Santoro: What?
Sam Rothstein: Then he called me a faggot. So what do you think I do? I threw that cocksucker out.
Nicky Santoro: What? Ho--. [puts down phone and addresses cowboy] Hey, come here. You called my friend a faggot? You tell him to go fuck himself?
Cowboy: Nicky, I did--.
Nicky Santoro: Is that what you did?
Cowboy: I did--, I didn't--.
Nicky Santoro: Tell him to go fuck himself? [hits cowboy on the head with the phone] You fucking hick! Fuckin', You big fuckin' hick, you. Come here. Come here. Get him up. Come here.
Frank Marino: Get up, Get up.
Nicky Santoro: Come here. Come here. You go over there right now and you apologize. You better hope he lets you back in. If you ever get out of line over there again, I'll smash your fuckin' head so hard, you won't be able to get that cowboy hat on. You hear me? Fucking hick. [resumes phone conversation] Sammy, listen. This guy obviously doesn't know who he was talking to. You understand? He doesn't know that... we're dear friends. I mean, he's already very sorry. But... if you could do me a favor and let him back in, I swear to you he'll never get out of line again. I promise you that.
Sam Rothstein: If he does it again, he's out for good. I don't care what it is, Nick, I'm gonna ha-- I'll never let him in the place again.
Nicky Santoro: I'm sorry about this. Really. All right, Ace?
Sam Rothstein: Okay.
Nicky Santoro: Thanks, pal. [hangs up the phone and turns to cowboy] You took your boots off? You put your feet on the table... You shit-kicking, stinky, horse-manure-smelling motherfucker you! You fuck me up over there, I'll stick you in a hole in the fuckin' desert! You understand? [slaps cowboy in the face] Go over there and apologize. Go! Get the fuck out of--!
Cowboy: Nicky, I'm sorry.

Sam Rothstein {as narrator}: Well, it wasn't long before what I was afraid was going to happen, happened. Nicky managed to get himself banned from every casino in Las Vegas. And from that moment on I couldn't be seen with him in Vegas or anywhere near it.
Nicky Santoro: What the fuck is that supposed to mean? [reads letter] " ...detrimental to gaming. And he will be ejected from any casino in Las Vegas... and the casinos can be fined as much as $100,000 every time he shows up." [He waves the document] Do you believe this shit?
Sam Rothstein: (Smoking a cigarette) Yeah, I believe it. You got banned.
Nicky Santoro: [reads letter again] "Because of unsavory reputation..." [He angrily wads the document and tosses it across the table] Motherfucker. Unsavory fuckin'... Is there any way around this?
Sam Rothstein: No, there's no way.
Nicky Santoro: Let's say, for instance, I want to go in a restaurant that happens to be inside a casino, to get one of those sandwiches I like?
Sam Rothstein: Forget it. You cannot so much as set foot in the parking lot. That is how serious this is.
Nicky Santoro: In other words, I'm fucked.
Sam Rothstein: In so many words, yes.
Sam Rothstein {as narrator}: It just didn't sink into his head about the Black Book and what it meant. Not being able to go into a casino is just one thing, but being in this book etched your name into the brains of every cop and FBI agent in the state. I mean, you're listed in there with Al Capone. But Nicky didn't care.
Nicky Santoro: I gotta do somethin'. I gotta do somethin'. They ain't gettin' rid of me. They're not gettin' rid of me. I'm staying here. Fuck 'em. Fuck 'em.

Commissioner Webb: Thanks for seeing a humble public servant Mr. Rothstein. You run a nice business here. House is doing very well for itself. Uh, I come here personally to kind of smooth over a fracas about a certain matter. See, uh, maybe you didn't know it, but, uh, Don Ward is a very well-liked man in this town. He's got lots of friends here. Now, his family and their money go back many, many years. Now, friends vote... family and money votes. That's important to me... and you. And if you'll think about our little problem along them lines... and you forgive me for sayin' it, maybe he did not deserve to be fired.
Sam Rothstein: I'm sorry, but he knew about our gettin' hit on three big machines in a row and he did nothing about it. That means either he was in on it or, forgive me for saying this, he was too dumb to see what was going on. Either way, I cannot have a man like that workin' here.
Commissioner Webb: Before we point the dirty end of the stick at 'ol Don, uh, we better be sure we can prove them charges.
Sam Rothstein: Believe me, if I could prove it, he would be under arrest.
Commissioner Webb: Are, uh - [Clears throat] - are we certain that you want the Gamin' Control Board eyeballin' your record and your gangster pals like Nicky Santoro?
Sam Rothstein: I think you're way out of line talkin' to me like that. What you're sayin' is libelous, and you're in no position to challenge my expertise. I went way out of my way to be very helpful and courteous to that kid. He's weak, he's incompetent. He jeopardizes the whole place. There's not much more I can do for him.
Commissioner Webb{chuckling}: You have got me there. Old Don is about as useless as teats on a boar! But, he is my brother-in-law, and I would look on it as a personal favor if you'd think some more on hirin' him back.
Sam Rothstein: I can't do that. And I appreciate the fact that he's your brother-in-law, and I do want to help you and I like to do favors, and I know who you are, but I cannot do that.
Commissioner Webb: Well, could there be any position... further down the trough?
Sam Rothstein: I'm sorry, I can't do anything. He's too incompetent. And the bottom line is, he cannot be trusted. Um... you know, that's it. I'm sorry.
Commissioner Webb: Mr Rothstein. Your people never will understand the way it works out here. You're all just our guests. But you act like you're at home. Let me tell you somethin', partner... you ain't home. But that's where we're gonna send you if it harelips the Governor.

Nicky Santoro {as narrator}: No matter what problems were outside the count room, it was all worth it. The cash kept rolling in, and the suitcases made their way to Kansas City. The only problem was after a while, the bosses noticed the suitcases were getting a little light Count room employee pockets a wad of cash.
Kansas City. Bosses are enraged at news
Vincent Borelli: Aspetta, Wait a minute. You mean to tell me that the money we're robbing is bein' robbed? That somebody's robbing from us? We go through all this fuckin' trouble, and somebody's robbin' us?
Remo Gaggi: Eh?
John Nance: Like I said, you know, i-it's part of the business. I-it's considered leakage.
Vincent Borelli: Leakage, my balls. I want the guy who's robbin' us.
Nicky Santoro{as narrator}: Even John Nance, that's the guy who ran the skim, he knew there wasn't much you could do about it. You gotta know that a guy who helps you steal, even if you take care of him real well, I mean, he's gonna steal a little bit extra for himself. Makes sense, don't it? Right? Well, you go try and make these hard-headed old greaseballs understand that.
Vincent Borelli: What's the point of skimming if we're being skimmed? Defeats the whole purpose of what we're doin' out there.
Remo Gaggi: Eh?
John Nance: You know, they take this money because they're my guys. So you gotta give 'em some leeway.
Nicky Santoro{as narrator}: But the bosses never believed in leeway, so listen to what they do: they put Artie Piscano, the underboss of KC, in charge of making sure nobody skimmed the skim.
Vincent Borelli: What the hell have you been doin' out there?
Artie Piscano: I was out there with my cumma.
Vincent Borelli: Your cumma? What were you doing with your cumma?
Artie Piscano: What else? I gave her a schaff!
Nicky Santoro{as narrator}: The only trouble was, Piscano was a disaster. This guy could fuck up a cup of coffee.
Vincent Borelli: Artie, what the hell have you been doin' out there, Artie?
Artie Piscano: I'm out there more than I'm here.
Nicky Santoro{as narrator}: And little did anybody know where this would all lead. If they did, they would have been better off makin' fuckin' novenas.
Vincent Borelli: You gotta go back there and talk to that guy.
Artie Piscano: Come on, go back there? I never got paid my expenses for the last trip.
Vincent Borelli: What expenses?
Artie Piscano: Well, I'm goin' all over, layin' money out of my own pocket, and I never get anything back. What the hell's goin' on?
Vincent Borelli: You gotta go back out there.
Artie Piscano: Well, then, from now on, I'm gonna start keepin' records.
Vincent Borelli: Artie, no records, Artie. Artie. What are you gonna do with records? Pay taxes?
Artie Piscano: Well, I keep layin' out my own fuckin'dough for these trips and nothin' ever comes back. I mean, what hell's goin' on? What are we doin' over here?
Vincent Borelli: You're goin' out to Las Vegas, you're havin' a good time at my expense. What the fuck? I mean, after all, you're the one having a good time, not me.

Sam has made an enemy in County Commissioner Pat Webb for firing his brother-in-law from the Tangiers. An inoppurtune moment occurs when Sam is made to admit he is responsible for the day-to-day operations of the Tangiers, which is publicized by the media. Webb is holding up a newspaper headline.
Commissioner Webb: Hm. Have you read this? Hm? It's 'bout Mr Rothstein. It says: "The Midwest bookmaker with mob ties says that he is the real boss of the new hundred-million-dollar Tangiers Casino empire." You believe that?
Ronny Duprey, Gaming Agent #1: Did he really say that?
Commissioner Webb: Why, of course, he really said that. It's right here. Has that man even filed for his license yet?
Gaming Agent #2: I don't know. We'll have to check the files.
Commissioner Webb: Well, without gettin' your shorts in a knot, would you do that? And kinda check closely, 'cause we may have to kick a kike's ass out of town. Thank you.

Newspaper: ROTHSTEIN OUT OF GAMING
Remo Gaggi: What the hell's he gonna do now?
Andy Stone{sighing}: I don't know.
Remo Gammi: What's he doin'? He knows all those guys he yelled at are friends of ours. What's the matter with him, making all this mess?
Andy Stone: Maybe he could run things with another job title. Wouldn't be the best, but, uh, what are we gonna do?
Remo Gaggi: However he runs things, it's gotta be quiet. Let him hide upstairs in the office. Say he's the janitor, I don't give a shit. But, please, whatever job he takes, make sure it's something quiet.
Cut to a TV show
Woman announcer: Ladies and gentlemen, the Tangiers Hotel proudly presents the all-new Sam Rothstein Show, Aces High.

Remo Gaggi: Frankie, the little guy, he wouldn't be fooling with the Jew's wife, would he? Because if he is, then it's a problem.
Scene freeze-frames
Frank Marino {as narrator}: What could I say? I knew that if I gave the wrong answer, Nicky, Ginger, Ace, all of them could've wound up getting killed. Because there's one thing about these old timers: they don't like any messing around with the other guys' wives. It's bad for business. So I lied. Even though I knew that by lying to Gaggi, I could wind up getting killed, too.
Scene resumes
Frank Marino: No. No, I didn't see anything like that.
Remo Gaggi: Are you sure?
Frank Marino: I'm positive. Remo, things are very fouled up down there.
Remo Gaggi: I know; that's why I'm asking. You see, my main concern is Nicky.

External links[edit]

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