Law school graduate Alex Stillman isn't happy as junior clerk in his domineering father's firm but finds distraction as highly gifted Internet poker player. Legendary Tommy Vinson, who retired 20 years ago for his wife's sake, successfully offers to coach Alex for half of the fortunate he can learn to win in Las Vegas. The training, focusing on bluffing and dirty tricks, goes well until Alex feels abused by a girl hired by Vinson. They end up both entering the world tour grand final.Written by
When Alex is shown playing the last hand of his PokerStars satellite, neither hand is visible to those watching, making this an observer's view of the table. As such, Alex was not actually playing the hand, merely watching someone else win. See more »
"Deal" is the oldie about the retired card shark - who's sworn off the game for love of a good woman - who serruptitiously takes a promising young whippersnapper under his wing to train him in the fine art of high-stakes poker. Burt Reynolds is the leathery old pro and Bret Harrision his green, but cocky pupil who together head to Vegas and New Orleans for an intense session of training and instruction. But will Tommy be able to resist the lure of the tables and not mount a comeback of his own? And will we finally wind up with the card shark and the neophyte squaring off in a televised multi-million-dollar tournament to determine the very best poker player in the whole wide world? I'll see you and raise you on that bet.
As a subject for film, poker is already one of the least compelling forms of competition there is, and "Deal" does little to rectify that situation. Moreover, the characters and plot lines are so hopelessly hackneyed and uninspired that we spend most of our time just waiting for the scenes to play themselves out. Harrison lacks charisma as the upstart newbie, but Reynolds brings a degree of gravitas to his overly-familiar role of a has-been trying to achieve the victory and personal glory he missed out on the first time around.
But you'll wind up feeling as enervated as the players long before the final hand is played.
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