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THE MOVIE: Two for the Money

Al Pacino • Matthew McConaughey • Rene Russo

Brandon Lang (Matthew McConaughey) with Walter Abrams (Al Pacino) and wife Toni (Rene Russo) THE CONCEPT:
When an injury ends Brandon Long’s (McConaughey) football career, he is recruited by Walter Abrams, the kingpin of the biggest sports advisory service in the country. It doesn’t take long for Brandon to get comfortable in the high-rolling lifestyle of Walter’s world.

U.S. RELEASE: October 7 2005, Nationwide • Rated: R


“I thought that it was a great story about a winner who starts losing. It’s a great story about a guy who goes into the world and finds out that there’s an illusion there. He finds out that the world isn’t what it seemed. He finds out that his relationships are not what they seemed, and when it’s time to get out, and he wants out, there is more to make back than just money. It becomes somewhat of a survival story by that time for him and for other people that he loves, his own family, and people that he’s come to care about.”

RENE RUSSO (Toni) on working with Al Pacino:
“He’s very intimidating. He doesn’t talk a lot. I went in the room during rehearsal and I thought, ‘It’s Al Pacino, that’s Al Pacino, oh my God, that’s Al Pacino!’ I’ve got to be honest, I was really scared to work with him, and I don’t think too many people have intimidated me.”

“This was a special role for me. I haven’t had what I thought was a really meaty role, in what I thought was a drama, come across my desk that I either liked or that was offered to me. I had just done some lighter romantic comedies which had been successful, and I really enjoyed doing that, but coming off of that I was looking for something else. With a drama the circumstances become much closer to life and death and survival, and then it was just doing things that I was interested in. I love sports; I love competition, even with betting. If you have any gamble in you you’ll be able to get off on this film.”

“What stood out for me was Matthew’s dedication. It was unbelievable. He was so serious about this part. During rehearsals he would ask questions, he was just so into it. It’s wild working with him. The character takes him over. That’s how much he’s in it. It was fascinating to watch. You always learn something from everybody, but he was like, ‘Whoa!’”

McCONAUGHEY on whether he thinks about winning and losing when it comes to this film:
“There’s one word that I’m reminded of right now which is the word illusion. We’re in a business of creating illusions just by making moving pictures. It’s a miracle to get the movie made, but now that it is coming up to the release, things start getting hyped and there is a build and expectations can rise. They can be exaggerated or they can be below reality and that’s part of the illusion, because you don’t know until it opens that weekend what the box office will be. You’re reminded all the time that it’s not a science.”

Written by Judy Sloane. Back to top

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Feature © 2005 Visual Imagination.
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Film Review, #662, October 2005 cover

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