Vince Van Patten Movie ‘7 Days to Vegas’ Released
Vince Van Patten’s poker and prop-betting comedy flick, 7 Days to Vegas, is now available to the general public. The film, a pet project of Van Patten, the long-time World Poker Tour broadcast commentator, finally debuted nationally on September 25 after its initial showing in January at the Palm Springs International Film Festival.
The film, which was initially titled Walk to Vegas, stars Van Patten as downtrodden actor-turned-poker-player who through unusual circumstances ends up in a prop bet of epic proportions — whether he can walk the 280 miles from Los Angeles to Las Vegas in seven days, wearing a suit, through that area’s blazing desert heat.
The film co-stars Ross McCall and Paul Walter Hauser as fellow gambling degens to Van Patten’s character, Duke, and it also has roles for screen stars Jennifer Tilly, Chad Lowe, and Willie Garson, among others. The film is also something of a family-and-friends project, with Van Patten Brothers grabbing the lead production-company role. Van Patten’s real-life wife Eileen Davidson plays Duke’s wife KC, while his younger brother, James Van Patten, plays Duke’s younger brother Carl.
Despite modest-to-good reviews, 7 Days to Vegas‘s production companies were unable to land a deal for American theatrical release, so it’s now the straight-to-video route (with DVDs perhaps later) for the 92-minute film. That means it’s available on video-streaming services such as Amazon Prime, Hulu, YouTube, and Google Play for a modest $3.99. For the near future, streaming services will be the only way to watch this movie.
According to Van Patten, the film is inspired by some of his own real-life poker experiences, which date from his Hollywood home-poker games of the ’90s to the many gambling stories he’s had access to in his long-running role with the WPT. All that came together when Van Patten and Davidson viewed and watched another poker film a few years back and were disappointed with how it turned out.
“It was probably four and a half years ago because I’ve had a poker game in LA in the ’90s,” Van Patten told Film Threat‘s Alan Ng. It became a very big, a very big game. You know, where the stakes got higher and higher. But the fun thing about it was it was the people… it wasn’t about poker. We would bet on anything and everything. It’s true that we came up with this bet whether I could walk to Vegas at seven days for a large amount of money. That was the storyline, which we came up with myself and my writing partner, Steve Alper.”
Prominent Chicago-based film critic Richard Roeper gave the film three stars, writing this: “Gambling insiders will recognize the authentic representation of that world throughout the movie. But even if you don’t know a busted straight from a royal flush and you’ve never heard of a prop bet until now, 7 Days to Vegas works as a broad and funny comedy about some truly bent but hilarious characters.”
That’s promising. It’s not likely to be the next California Split, but there’s probably enough here for an enjoyable view. Let’s put it on the list.