Ben Campbell is a young, highly intelligent, student at M.I.T. in Boston who strives to succeed. Wanting a scholarship to transfer to Harvard School of Medicine with the desire to become a doctor, Ben learns that he cannot afford the $300,000 for the four to five years of schooling as he comes from a poor, working-class background. But one evening, Ben is introduced by his unorthodox math professor Micky Rosa into a small but secretive club of five. Students Jill, Choi, Kianna, and Fisher, who are being trained by Professor Rosa of the skill of card counting at blackjack. Intrigued by the desire to make money, Ben joins his new friends on secret weekend trips to Las Vegas where, using their skills of code talk and hand signals, they have Ben make hundreds of thousands of dollars in winning blackjack at casino after casino. Ben only wants to make enough money for the tuition to Harvard and then back out. But as fellow card counter, Jill Taylor, predicts, Ben becomes corrupted by greed ...Written by
The problem Prof. Rosa mentions in class with the three doors is known as the Monty Hall problem. See more »
When Ben is in the casino playing for the first time, the count is +18. We then see a face card (worth 10) appear and Ben wins. Mickey then asks him what the count is. He says +18, but it's really +17 because a face card has a value of -1. See more »
'Winner, winner, chicken dinner.' Those words had been dancing around my head all night. I mean, it's Vegas lore, that phrase. Just ask any of the old-time pit bosses, they'll know. It was a Chinese dealer at Binion's who was first credited with the line. He would shout it every time he dealt blackjack. That was over 40 years ago, and the words still catch. 'Winner, winner, chicken dinner.' Yeah, try it. I had heard it at least 14 times that night. I couldn't lose. First...
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Lots of badly delivered voice-overs (a lazy storytelling mechanism by the way), wooden acting, flashy cinematography, and unnecessary use of slow motion coupled with the basic plot of every Tom Cruise movie from the '80s is no substitute for a real movie. While this may be based on a real-life story, its similarity to good film entertainment ends at the point that they both use celluloid. Trite in every sense of the word, I hope Spacey got paid well as this thing certainly didn't propel his career anywhere. Nobody in the cast appeared to be trying, and the creative forces behind the camera flipped the auto-pilot switch "on". The Discovery Channel documentary reenactment had more dramatic punch.
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