Released in 2005, Two For The Money is a drama directed by Daniel John ‘D.J.’ Caruso and starring
Matthew McConaughey, Al Pacino and Rene Russo. Former college football star Brandon Lang (McConaughey) suffers a career-ending knee injury and is reduced to handicapping football matches. However, his in-depth knowledge of the game stands him in good stead and his success at doing so soon attracts the attention of big-name sports betting consultant, or tout, Walter Abrams (Pacino).
Abrams recruits Lang, with no little success and, with the aid of his wife, Toni (Russo), a hair stylist, transforms him into ‘John Anthony’. Billed as ‘Your Million Dollar Man’, Anthony becomes the star of Abrams’ cable television show, ‘The Sports Advisors’, much to the annoyance of resident expert Jeff Sykes (Jeremy Piven). Lang, though, becomes complacent and his newfound lavish lifestyle does not last long. That lifestyle, of course, goes hand in hand with his ability to pick winners and, having lost his touch, he is physically assaulted by a disgruntled client, C.M. Novian (Armand Assante), and his heavyweight associate while riding his bicycle through Central Park.
The previously amiable, almost paternal, relationship between Abrams and Lang sours. Abrams, who has a weak heart and has a history of addiction, including alcohol and gaming, starts to come unhinged. Toni Abrams, who knows her husband only too well, tells Lang, ‘ You could win a hundred games in a row, but it wouldn’t be enough. He will ride you into the ground. You have to go.’ He takes her advice and is flying home to Las Vegas from New York when his final picks, made by tossing a coin in the bathroom, he claims, both win. He takes a job coaching junior league football.