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Two for the Money (2005)

R  |   |  Drama, Sport, Thriller  |  7 October 2005 (USA)
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Ratings: 6.2/10 from 34,899 users   Metascore: 50/100
Reviews: 146 user | 113 critic | 29 from

After suffering a career-ending injury, a former college football star aligns himself with one of the most renowned touts in the sports-gambling business.



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Cast overview, first billed only:
Herbie (as Gerrard Plunkett)
Chrislyn Austin ...


Brandon Lang loves football: an injury keeps him from the pros, but his quarterback's anticipation makes him a brilliant predictor of games' outcomes. Needing money, he leaves Vegas for Manhattan to work for Walter Abrams advising gamblers. Walter has a doting wife, a young daughter, and a thriving business, but he has problems: a bum heart, a belief he's a master manipulator, and addictions barely kept in check. He remakes Brandon, and a father-son relationship grows. Then, things go awry. Walter may be running a con. The odds against Brandon mount. Written by <>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis


Drama | Sport | Thriller

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated R for pervasive language, a scene of sexuality and a violent act | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:





Release Date:

7 October 2005 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

For the Money  »

Box Office


$20,000,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend:

$8,703,240 (USA) (7 October 2005)


$12,183 (Chile) (16 June 2006)

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs


Sound Mix:

| |


Aspect Ratio:

2.35 : 1
See  »

Did You Know?


At the time of the film's theatrical debut, the phone number featured on Walter's television show (1 800 BET ON IT) was the number of an actual sports advice service. See more »


When Brandon and Walter are discussing the playoff loss, Walter tries to light his cigarette with his right had though it is in his mouth backwards, then Toni walks and yells at him he is still holding a lighter but in-between shots the lighter is replaced by an unwrapped lollipop. See more »


Walter Abrams: [forcibly grabs Brandon and whispers] I'm going to tell you something now, I'm only going to say this once if you want something more from me than a gesundheit after a sneeze you're going to have do more than come at me with this shit, you understand? you're going to have to earn it, and once you earn it, you're going to have to fight me for it, you're going to have to challenge me, you're going to rip it out of me that's how you get ahead with me, now John Anthony would know that and as a ...
See more »

Crazy Credits

Inspired by a true story See more »


Referenced in Insider Interview: The Real Brandon (2006) See more »


Save Me (Wake Up Call)
Written by Scott Russo, Linda Perry and Aimee Allen
Performed by Unwritten Law
Courtesy of Lava Records LLC
By Arrangement with Warner Music Group Film & TV Licensing
See more »

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User Reviews

For the Actors
18 January 2006 | by (United States) – See all my reviews

TWO FOR THE MONEY takes on the topic of Sports Gambling and makes a serious attempt to turn it into a movie. The story is apparently based on a true one (as per the opening screen statement) but it is from the pen of Dan Gilroy that the well-drawn characters are realized. DJ Caruso (Smallville, The Salton Sea, The Shield) knows his way around matters such as these and his pacing is fine, allowing for the isolated 'arias' in the film to work well. The problem, for this viewer, is the topic: how interesting can bilking chronic gamblers over football game wagers possibly be? The story is related by Brandon Long (Matthew McConaughey) who begins life as a sports hero and just at the moment when he is ready to break in to the Pro Football domain, he fractures his leg in a winning touchdown. Six years later, and still dreaming of making it as a player of football, finds him in the numbers game with a talent for picking winning teams and calling 900 numbers to urge gullible people t place bets according to his predictions. Enter Alter Abrams (Al Pacino), a recovering Gambler who is making it big in the sports gambling arena. He coerces Brandon to join him in New York, wines him, dines him with the aid of his smart and beautiful wife Toni (Rene Russo), and in no time Brandon Long takes on the persona of John Anthony and makes it big as a TV personality who successfully bilks willing gambling people out of their money. Long as Anthony takes on a life of his own and it is the conflagration between the creator Abrams and the protégé Anthony that fleshes out the film.

Interesting to a point, the story loses steam in the last half and we soon lose interest in the outcome or the characters. And not that that is the fault of the actors! Al Pacino is very effective as the reformed gambler still fighting demons and Rene Russo is as beautiful as ever, acting her role with complete conviction and holding what is left of the story, once started, together. Matthew McConaughey spends much of the movie without his shirt on which is a major contribution to the visuals of the film! Buff and beautiful he manages to keep the heart of Brandon Long beating inside the persona of John Anthony.

Not a great movie by any means, but some truly fine acting from the trio of stars. The supporting cast also gives solid roles despite the skimpy script. If gambling of any sort, and sports gambling in particular, is of interest to you, then this is a movie to recommend. Otherwise see it for the actors, not the story. Grady Harp

41 of 60 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

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