Nevada’s Las Vegas is synonymous with bright lights, booze, skin, and of course, flashy casinos. Zombies, ghouls, and evil spirits sound slightly out of place in the sin city, right? Well, not if you’re a horror movie buff. Casino game developers go the extra mile to create horror casino games, such as Vampire Slayer slots, Diablo, Reel Fear, etc. Thankfully, even makers of horror movies have not disappointed. From zombies knocking on the doors of a casino in Reno, Nevada to a casino gaming machine that is hell-bent on making a gullible gambler go mad and end his life – there’s a whole range of casino horror movies for you to watch again and again. Some of these horror casino movies stick in your mind because of the fantastic casino themes, and some of them are just plain horror packaged in the flashy packaging of Las Vegas lights. Are you ready to be scared? Read on.
The Twilight Zone: The Fever
This story was intended for the small screen initially; writer Rod Sterling was in Las Vegas, seeing his wife win and himself lose to a machine, and translated this into a psychological-horror movie. A couple wins a trip to Las Vegas, and Franklin, the man, becomes obsessed with a device (the machine returns the favor). After putting his winnings and even more money at stake, and losing it, Franklin realizes that the nightmare has just begun. That’s because the machine starts messing up with his mind, eventually driving him into committing suicide. No wonders, The Twilight Zone: The Fever enjoys a cult following among lovers of the casino, as well as lovers of horror movies. The theme worked so well that writer Rod Sterling chose similar themes for two more times during the network run of the series.
Dead Man’s Hand
When Matthew Dragna, the protagonist, inherits an old casino from his uncle, it’s all sunshine; only till he takes a road trip to this casino with his girlfriend and friends. That’s because the casino is haunted by the malevolent spirits of dead gangsters. Though critics consider this one of the many average teen horror flicks, the casino setting makes it worth watching. It’s exciting watching Dragna and his friends do their best to escape the evil designs of the spirits in the casino. Don’t let the movie deter your resolve to visit an old casino, though.
Post-apocalyptic times. Nevada. Zombies. If that doesn’t make for the perfect casino horror movie recipe, we don’t know what does! A group of unfortunate survivors of a zombie attack seeks refuge in an abandoned casino in Reno, Nevada. The only problem is, the zombies are nearby, and they’re becoming stronger every day. Is this the best zombie movie you’ll ever see? Not by any chance. However, this indeed will be one of the fascinating horror flicks, because of the crazy, fascinating, and alluring casino backdrop; don’t miss this one.
A classic from the 1990s, Leprechaun has a riveting plot, with all the menace and gore that makes a horror movie worth watching again and again. Dan O’ Grady takes the risk of his life by stealing an Irish Leprechaun’s gold. He plans to start a new life with it; just that fate has something else in the store. The wronged Leprechaun follows O’ Grady back to the US, and kills his wife by pushing her down the basement stairs. O’ Grady then manages to use a four leaf clover to trap the leprechaun inside a crate but suffers from a stroke before he can burn down the evil creature. Ten years later, a different set of characters occupies the house, and one of them releases the leprechaun! Terror and chaos ensue!
Fear and Loathing in Las Vegas
Raoul Duke and Dr. Gonzo are on their way to Las Vegas, and they’re carrying a large quantity of LSD. After checking into a hotel-casino on the iconic Strip, the nightmare begins, because Duke starts hallucinating and losing his mind. The hotel clerk appears to be a moral eel, and people in the bar seem to be copulating lizards to him. Gonzo destroys his room after a heavy LSD dose. They feed a runaway teenager some LSD, trash some more rooms, and wreak havoc on themselves, as with others. Eventually, Duke starts seeing Gonzo as a demon. The wobbling camera shots, color shifts, and visual styling of the film make it a must watch for anybody interested in the casino gaming and horror movies. The depiction of paranoia in the movie extends beyond the portrayal of fear in traditional horror movies and makes it a must watch.
The world of casinos is riveting, with the thrills of slot machines, the tricks of blackjack, and the mind-boggling potential of making a fortune. Horror movies, in their way, are as addictive, serving a delectable recipe of thrill, excitement, mystery, and fear. When these two forces collide, magic happens, and the magic comes alive in casino horror movies.