A young and impatient stockbroker is willing to do anything to get to the top, including trading on illegal inside information taken through a ruthless and greedy corporate raider who takes the youth under his wing.
The playing card brands used throughout the film, in order are: - Teddy KGB's place: Kem cards - Professor's game: Bicycle cards - Frat house game: Bicycle cards - Chesterfield's: Kem cards - Taj Mahal casino: casino branded cards - Union game: not identifiable - Cigar shop game: Bicycle cards - Coffee shop: not identifiable but "made in USA" (possibly Aviator cards, which has an Ace of Spades that resembles the one partially seen) - Golf club game: Bicycle cards - Cop game: Bicycle cards - Matt Damon vs Jon C. Chan: casino branded cards - Final game at Teddy KGB's: KEM cards. See more »
When Worm is waiting for Mike outside Mike's apartment, stickers on the window say "NO ENUS" with both words centered. "ENUS" should have been shifted to the right, as the original word "MENUS" would probably have been centered when the letters were originally applied. See more »
Listen, here's the thing. If you can't spot the sucker in the first half hour at the table, then you ARE the sucker.
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This film was unjustly panned as lethargic and bleak without a purpose. Considering how Hold 'Em has developed into one of the biggest social fads in the last decade, I would say that this film captures every emotional aspect the 'swings' of No Limit typically carry.
I had absolutely no idea how to play the game when I first saw this movie about five years ago. The dialogue is wrought with jargon that almost makes a mockery of itself. Especially since much of the movie is done with voice-over, I can see where critics are coming from. However, the viewer should not allow themselves to get bogged down with it all, we get the gist with well-developed staging and performances.
Damon and Norton play off each other better than Damon and Affleck. Though the story echoes in the wake of Scorsese's 'Mean Streets', the performances seem more detailed than the Keitel/DeNiro combo. The supporting roles add great depth to the film, and Tutorro shines as the wise-old has-been that successfully provides Damon's character with the cold-hard truth he never seems to adhere to (until it is too late).
Above all, we feel compelled to cheer for Damon's Mike McDermott the ENTIRE time. He acknowledges his 'bad' play but constantly tries to explain that this is a game of skill and not luck. This is an important element considering the widely accepted belief that any success in gambling is the result of luck. This may be true in the bloodsucking casinos, but in Hold 'Em you play the chips AND the man.
Now that baseball is out of the Olympics, perhaps we will see a push for a true "WORLD Series of Poker". Then again, I also wanted to see 'Four Square' made into an official event when I was 8, so maybe I'm just talking out of my ass...
Should be commended as a precursor to a pandemic fad that is costing teens (and their parents) millions daily.
*** (of ****)
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