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Two for the Money (2005)
 
 
Two for the Money has a formidable cast: Al Pacino, Matthew McConaughey, and Rene Russo (The Thomas Crown Affair ) play compulsive personalities caught up in the high-testosterone world of sports betting. Brandon Lang (McConaughey, Sahara), a once-promising football player sidelined by an injury, has an uncanny knack for totting up the statistics and personalities involved in any football game and picking the winner.

He doesn't gamble himself: He offers tips via a phone line. His string of successful picks attracts the attention of Walter Abrams (Pacino), a man building a media empire on sports tips, even though he himself can only resist his own gambling addiction thanks to the fierce devotion of his wife, Toni.

A phone call from Abrams moves Brandon swiftly into becoming Walter's protege and transforms him into an aggressive, high-risk salesman, even going so far as to change his name to create a new self.
 
Brandon's talent shines even as the pressure to land bigger clients increases with Abrams bulging desire for huge success with his new sports picker. The rise culminates landing the biggest sports bettor in the world.

The film up to now has flown along with punchy dialogue and razzle-dazzle acting and a really very 'sweet' scene when the pair visit a GA (Gamblers Anonymous) meeting. Here it starts to founder; the characters never quite feel real, the plot grows laboured and implausible, and the basic themes of gambling and addiction start to turn vague, fuzzy and even non-existent.
 
Leaving the ending to the viewer, we can say the film really is enjoyable and bad reviews are clearly from those people who do not understand gambling or don't approve of it. Sad people. The director ran out of ideas of the point, theme and ending but there is plenty of humour to get you to the end of the film.

Impressive cast, like the movie itself, delivers unevenly - 7/10
Marks : 7/10
Director D.J. Caruso Al Pacino Walter Abrams
Writing Dan Gilroy Matthew McConaughey Brandon Lang
Cinematography Conrad W. Hall Rene Russo Toni Morrow
Film Editing Glen Scantlebury Jeremy Piven Jerry
    Ellen Barkin Calamity Jane
 
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