(2000) Directed by Paul Wilmshurst “Hello, I’m Jonathan Rendall and Channel 4 have given me GBP12,000 to gamble with. I’m looking forward to it.” So begins a quietly brilliant three hours in the company of British sportswriting’s great wayward talent, a man described as Keith Floyd crossed with Hunter S Thompson and a known betting enthusiast (C4 funded him in the wake of his book, Twelve Grand, about punting the titular amount). Understated shabby English charm is his stock-in-trade, all second-hand coats and Silk Cut. He wagers his way from his local bookie in East Anglia to boxing in Peterborough and London casinos, then Australia, Macau, Hong Kong and Las Vegas, shining valuable light on gambling. Rendall, who died in 2013, absolutely personifies the misplaced romanticism that makes a winning bet so beautiful and a losing one so horrible. The highs and lows of the gambling life are seen unvarnished and seem very real, despite our hero using the best kind of stake money—someone else’s.