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Two For the Money (2005)

tomatometer

22

Average Rating: 4.7/10
Reviews Counted: 110
Fresh: 24 | Rotten: 86

Despite its sportsmanlike swagger, Two for the Money's aimless plot isn't worth betting on.

16

Average Rating: 5.1/10
Critic Reviews: 32
Fresh: 5 | Rotten: 27

Despite its sportsmanlike swagger, Two for the Money's aimless plot isn't worth betting on.

audience

48

liked it
Average Rating: 3.1/5
User Ratings: 85,218

My Rating

Movie Info

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

R,

Drama, Mystery & Suspense, Comedy

Dan Gilroy

Jan 17, 2006

$22.9M

Universal Pictures - Official Site External Icon

Watch It Now

Cast

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All Critics (123) | Top Critics (37) | Fresh (24) | Rotten (86) | DVD (21)

Original screenwriting gives way to clichés, and the resolution, while offering closure, seems false -- too much a case of the filmmakers wanting to have their cake and eat it, too.

October 12, 2005 Full Review Source: ReelViews
ReelViews
Top Critic IconTop Critic

It really works as a study of gambling.

October 11, 2005 Full Review Source: Ebert & Roeper
Ebert & Roeper
Top Critic IconTop Critic

The movie has a lot of built-in flash and is thus mildly entertaining, though the running time grinds it down.

October 7, 2005 Full Review Source: USA Today
USA Today
Top Critic IconTop Critic

Pacino is having a blast, and so might the viewer, at least until our scenery muncher finally gobbles all the foliage mid-way through the picture.

October 7, 2005 Full Review Source: Toronto Star
Toronto Star
Top Critic IconTop Critic

Even at his worst Al Pacino can charm the birds from the trees, but in "Two For The Money" pigeons are the only species visiting.

April 19, 2009 Full Review Source: ColeSmithey.com
ColeSmithey.com

While there are parts of Two for the Money worth watching, it's ultimately not one worth putting your money on.

November 2, 2006
Christianity Today

Por trás de uma trama aparentemente convencional, esconde-se um inteligente estudo de personagem beneficiado pela estupenda atuação de Pacino (que conta também com o belo desempenho de seu companheiro de elenco, McConaughey).

May 13, 2006
Cinema em Cena

The initial set-up is interesting enough but the film rapidly loses its way in the middle and ends up a horribly confused mess, with sub-plots and entire characters simply disappearing into thin air.

March 9, 2006 Full Review Source: ViewLondon
ViewLondon

Pacino's performance is only a few degrees shy of full-bore scenery-chewing, but the veteran actor stomps through this movie like a small Italian Godzilla.

January 13, 2006 Full Review Source: DVDTalk.com
DVDTalk.com

Pacino rants and McConaughey flashes his pearlies in this craptacular mess.

November 10, 2005 Full Review Source: IGN Movies
IGN Movies

...claims to be 'inspired' by a true story, which is probably the case, but any genuine drama has been diluted in favor of lazy predictability and a silly feel-good ending.

November 9, 2005 Full Review
Denton Record Chronicle (TX)

Heavy on style and atmosphere and light on virtually everything else.

October 22, 2005 Full Review Source: Film Journal International
Film Journal International

Call it My Fair Lady with a gender switch, a betting line and an over/under.

October 17, 2005

Because I couldn't understand how the betting advisory business depicted in 'Two for the Money" operates, the movie didn't always work for me.

October 16, 2005 Full Review Source: ReelTalk Movie Reviews
ReelTalk Movie Reviews

It still seems like there should be more tension in Two for the Money than simply watching grown men bite their lips as they watch pro games on TV monitors.

October 15, 2005 Full Review Source: Austin Chronicle
Austin Chronicle

Two For The Money is as insincere as the phony football played in the film.

October 15, 2005 Full Review Source: Entertainment Insiders
Entertainment Insiders

Maybe Al Pacino is losing his satanic touch.

October 14, 2005 Full Review Source: PopMatters
PopMatters

Who could have figured such a long-shot pairing would parlay into such a tasty payoff?

October 13, 2005 Full Review Source: Boulder Weekly

The film is an exercise in indecision -- what happens when a writer develops an idea, but not a story.

October 13, 2005 Full Review
Northwest Herald (Crystal Lake, IL)

What do blackjack tables and Al Pacino movies have in common? They each encourage you to gamble with your money.

October 13, 2005

I don't know what this film should have been called, but I think that the title "Two for the Money" is misleading.

October 13, 2005 Full Review
KWQC-TV (Iowa)

Apart from the three lead performances, the movie is bad in the train-wreck sense. And that's also what makes it fascinating.

October 12, 2005 Full Review Source: Mountain Xpress (Asheville, NC)
Mountain Xpress (Asheville, NC)

Why did this dull, banal, boring movie get made? Rene Russo's husband wrote the script and Morgan Creek must have called in favors.

October 12, 2005 Full Review Source: Modamag.com
Modamag.com

Audience Reviews for Two For the Money

To be honest, it's not *that* bad considering it's a movie about sports betting. I didn't expect to sit through all of it as it was, but I got increasingly more and more bored as it went along. There wasn't enough story outside of the betting, though the two lead characters were strong and had potential to be interesting. More Alexandria would have maybe improved the story.
I think some of it is down to me. I really aren't into sports and sports movies. At all.
August 16, 2014
romy861

Super Reviewer

The thing about a business that makes and sells picks to sports bettors is that, technically, it's not gambling... except for the fact that it is. What was good about this film was the recovered gambling addict (Pacino) and his wife, the poorly acted but more-or-less believable ex-drug addict (Russo). They walked and talked like rehabbers, no question. But what was really frustrating was the pervasive fear that Pacino would go back to gambling... his business is based on making the right picks. He's been gambling all along! The film is anything but subtle, and though it's promising through the first half, it loses control in the second, throwing in a bunch of scenes that unnecessarily delay the resolution, and distract from the movie's point, that you can't win them all. Still, there is a decently-plotted classical tragedy element to McConaughey's character (pride goeth before the fall), and Pacino is always fun to watch. Too bad this film's only half-baked, it had potential.
October 16, 2011
danperry17

Super Reviewer

This movie sucks like a vacuum!
January 27, 2010
KJ Proulx

Super Reviewer

Walter Abrams: "Stats are not enough, you need a voice! These are gamblers ready to risk what they can't afford for what they can't have, you're selling the world's rarest commodity: certainty, in an uncertain world."

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 his protégé. Soon the two men are attempting to outwit each other, with Walter's wife (Rene Russo) caught in the middle.

Review
Well, I saw this movie yesterday, and although I wasn't disappointed, I wasn't terribly thrilled, either. I imagine it would be different for someone who was really into sports, sports gambling, or maybe was a compulsive gambler himself. For me, the relationships were interesting, and Al Pacino certainly chewed the scenery in his role as a kingpin sports prognosticator. I would say that he was over-the top except that I know actual people from New York who are really like that. Matthew McConaughey was as good as I have seen him and ripped as ever. I would recommend the picture for beefcake fans, but there really wasn't enough to make a meal of. Not my type of picture, more suitable for sports fans.
November 28, 2008
LorenzoVonMatterhorn
Lorenzo von Matterhorn

Super Reviewer

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