Mississippi Grind

Director: Anna Boden, Ryan Fleck
Screenwriters: Anna Boden, Ryan Fleck

Institute History

  • 2015 Sundance Film Festival


Gerry is a talented poker player, but his gambling habit is getting the best of him. One day, he meets a charismatic young traveler named Curtis. Deeming Curtis his lucky charm, Gerry convinces him that they should hit the road together. As they gamble their way down South toward a legendary high-stakes poker game in New Orleans, the trip’s highs and lows unveil the duo’s true character and motivation, and an undeniable bond forms between them.

Writers/directors Anna Boden and Ryan Fleck return to the Sundance Film Festival (Half Nelson, Sugar) with an intoxicating story of compulsive gamblers that flawlessly captures the seedy world of small-time losers and dreamers. The film’s atmosphere of frenzied hope and paranoia at the various racetracks, bars, and casinos is suffused with an evocative soundtrack and enlivened by two pitch-perfect performances. Ryan Reynolds shines as the confident, jocular Curtis. But the film’s true revelation is Ben Mendelsohn, who, as Gerry, is finally given a leading role in an American film and crushes it. Mississippi Grind instantly joins the classic canon of films about gambling. —T.G.

— T.G.

Screening Details

As you use our Online Archives, please understand that the information presented from Festivals, Labs, and other activities is taken directly from official publications from each year. While this information is limited and doesn't necessarily represent the full list of participants (e.g. actors and crew), it is the list given to us by the main film/play/project contact at the time, based on the space restrictions of our publications. Each entry in the Online Archives is meant as a historical record of a particular film, play, or project at the time of its involvement with Sundance Institute. For this reason, we can only amend an entry if a name is misspelled, or if the entry does not correctly reflect the original publication. If you have questions or comments, please email [email protected]