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Tails You Live, Heads You're Dead (1995)

One day at the bar, office clerk Jeffrey Quint gets himself talked into a game of liar's dice by a lone stranger who introduces himself as Neil Jones and gets on Quint's nerves by ... See full summary »

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(short story "Liar's Dice"),
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Cast

Credited cast:
Melissa Bell ...
Janice Wiseman
...
Neil Jones / Roy Francis Netter
James Binkley ...
Airline Clerk
David Blacker ...
Security Guard
...
Tony (as Christopher Britton)
Harold Burke ...
Fred, Netter's Handyman
...
Melanie Quint
...
Brad
Jackie Harris ...
Angie
...
Detective McKinley
...
Jeffrey Quint
Sibongile Nene ...
Gail, Netter's Secretary
David Nichols ...
Detective Kessel
Jeff Pustil ...
Phil Wiseman
...
Kevin Quint
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Storyline

One day at the bar, office clerk Jeffrey Quint gets himself talked into a game of liar's dice by a lone stranger who introduces himself as Neil Jones and gets on Quint's nerves by confessing he kills people for business. Quint doesn't really believe him, but when Jones tries to run him over on his way home it's getting clear that game time is far from over, and that it's Jones's call... Written by Swie Tio <sweet_t_prod@hotmail.com>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated R for some violence | See all certifications »
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Details

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Release Date:

18 October 1995 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Jogador Assassino  »

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User Reviews

Chosen by chance. Hunted for sport.
11 October 2001 | by (Sydney, Australia) – See all my reviews

This is a weak entry in the serial killer genre directed by actor Tim Matheson, with a teleplay by Miguel Tejada-Flores based on a short story "Liar's Dice" by Bill Prozini. At the centre is Ted McGinley, who seems to think sighing is acting, as a family man who is the 13th target of the attentions of Corbin Bernsen. Matheson draws parallels between Bernsen and McGinley, with a satanic stone figure on a bar after Bernsen exits, and a pan from McGinley's lunchtime motel sex with his own wife to the touch of their weddings rings then to a painting of angels. Although Bernsen is livelier than usual his persona is still non-threatening, and McGinley is such a pain that we never empathise with his victimisation. It's like watching a Punch and Judy who never connect. The dice/game metaphor isn't extended, though it may explain the lack of reality of Bernsen's previous behaviour. Matheson casts himself as a private detective with a buzzcut, a Southern accent, and a stuffed alligator on his desk. It's easy to imagine him playing McGinley's role, at times they even look similar, but his part is as negligible as any other here. He supplies the thriller cliches like a frightened cat, but also a Brian DePalma split screen and hand-pans. There is some suspense created from scorpions placed in a bed, but an unsatisfying resolution to their appearance. Perhaps because of the short story source material, this TVM actually reads like an extended anthology episode, with an underpopulated universe and wooden supporting parts, and the DePalma touch is later echoed in McGinley's nightmare, though Matheson's vision isn't as dark.


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