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HOLY ROLLERS: The True Story of Card Counting Christians

Directed by Bryan Storkel; Produced by Amy Storkel, Jason ConnellAirs on May 23, 9p

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HOLY ROLLERS is a captivating documentary that follows the rise of the Church Team, arguably the largest and most well funded blackjack team in North America. This unlikely group of Christians, pastors, worship leaders and church-planters mastered the art of card counting and marched into traditionally forbidden territory - casinos - to beat the house at it’s own game to the tune of millions of dollars. In spite of the team’s phenomenal success, many team members deal with the personal conflict of how to be a Christian and play blackjack for a living. How will they manage to find a place for faith and God in the arena of high stakes gambling? They found themselves at odds with their own families, congregants, and fellow Christians who feared that they were wandering into morally bankrupt territory.

Interview with the Filmmakers

Warren Etheredge interviews director Bryan Storkel and one of the players profiled in the film, Colin Jones.

Filmmaker's Statement

As a filmmaker and a serious doc-watcher, I am constantly attracted to stories with unusual and entertaining characters. I especially enjoy characters who have found their unique niche in life…or that one thing that means so much to them that they put all of their time and energy into it. When I first heard about this blackjack team, I knew that this was one of those stories that had to be told. Not only were these interesting people doing something different, but they were also people that had grown up in traditional Christian churches that taught against the very thing that they were doing. I immediately saw the conflict in the story; the struggle between the beliefs they were taught, and the new ways in which they were living out their faith.

Of course there is also the intrigue of professional card-counters taking Vegas (and other casinos) for millions. Movies have often given a false image of what card-counting really is, and I wanted to show a more accurate picture. I felt that telling the story of this team would be interesting to viewers and also uncover some truth on this subject. Never before has the public been given such unrestricted access to the secretive and covert world of professional card-counters. Due to close personal ties with one of the founders of the team, and after years of persuasion, the players agreed to allow cameras into their world. My goal, then, was to simply tell their story as accurately and as beautifully as possible.

- Bryan Storkel

Learn More at: www.holyrollersthemovie.com.

Watch it on Netflix:Netflix

Holy Rollers: The True Story of Card Counting Christians

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05/23/14

I totally disagree with TonyinSeattle's comment about how this blackjack team can square their Christianity with playing cards in Casinos. I didn't get the impression that they held the almighty dollar over The Almighty. They use their math skills and highly trained memory to beat the casinos at their own game. The same casinos that steal $billions from the simple working man/woman every chance they can.

These young men work hard for their investors for a salary. Their managers keep their game plan sharp and skilled and their Christian values in line. It is not the "gambling" game, per se, that they pursue. They are making an honest living and taking care of their families with their God-given talent.

These young men are competent and creative. They are hardly "robbing" casinos. That's a LOL. Don't judge another person's soul. It is none of your business.

05/23/14

Little confused here. How do these folks create a rationale for gambling and their religious beliefs. What I think of right away is Jesus clearing the Temple of Money Changers and overturning tables in anger because of the worship of the green back. These guys are also worshiping the Almighty Dollar. What religious group is this? It seems to me that these are smart people acting very stupid by wasting there time in a casino. Their children will most likely follow in their footsteps. For all the money that they are winning I see them as POOR LOST SOULS.

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