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Two for the Money (2005)

Cast: Al Pacino, Matthew McConaughey, Rene Russo, more...
Director: D.J. Caruso, James M. Freitag
    see all cast/crew...
Studio: Universal Studios Home Entertainment
Running Time: 122 min.

D.J. Caruso's Two for the Money stars Matthew McConaughey as Brandon Lang, a former college quarterback whose life plans changed when he suffered a career ending injury. Brandon turns out to have remarkable skill at picking winning football bets. Eventually he comes to the attention of Walter Abrams (Al Pacino), a very successful business tycoon who runs a giant gambling operation. Walter brings Brandon to New York and introduces him to a glitzy, fast-paced, money-drenched lifestyle that Brandon eagerly soaks up. When Brandon's magic touch begins to falter, Walter starts to turn on is protégé. Soon the two men are attempting to outwit each other, with Walter's wife (Rene Russo) caught in the middle. ~ Perry Seibert, All Movie Guide

GreenCine Member Reviews

Sports and Losers by talltale February 9, 2006 - 12:57 PM PST
TWO FOR THE MONEY flopped pretty thoroughly theatrically, which is too bad, considering how unusual this movie is. Ostensibly a story about the sports promo business used by heavy bettors (which makes it unique in my movie-watching experience), it's actually a film about losers--of which America, in its obsession with winning (even if we have to fake it, a la "Mission Accomplished"), has too few. More unusual yet, it's about people who crave losing, who are hooked on it, as most addicts of any stripe usually are. About one-third of the way into the movie, the Al Pacino character harangues a self-help group by telling them what their deepest motive is. This speech floats unspoken though the remaining film, right up until its somber conclusion.

Directed by D.J. Caruso ("The Salton Sea"), who captures the natty/exciting look/feel of living high in NYC and the equally gloomy despair when it's over, the film also boasts a fine supporting cast led by Jeremy Piven and super-sleek cinematography by Conrad Hall. Caruso gets great performances from Pacino, Matthew McConaughey (as good as he's ever been) and Rene Russo, who co-produced and is hitched, I believe, to the screenwriter here, Dan Gilroy. It's good to see her again, and she fills out this role of a middle-age but still glamorous wife quite well. After a great start, the movie appears, shortly past the mid-point, to be going nowhere (or somewhere we've all been too often). Hang on, because it gets a lot better and stronger by the conclusion, as its theme is brought home with solid, sad conviction.

GreenCine Member Rating

(Average 6.00)
2 Votes
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