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Phil Hellmuth's Million Dollar Secrets to Bluffing and Tells

Phil Hellmuth

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Strengths: Tips on tells.
Weaknesses: Confusing, subpar bluffing advice.
Year: 2004
Runtime: 50 mins.

Reviewed by TwoGun on Oct. 19, 2005.

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Hellmuth's Million Dollar Secrets to Bluffing and Tells is the second installment in his DVD series. It is a relatively short DVD where Phil talks to the viewer about how to bluff and utilize tells effectively. His tips on bluffing are generally not helpful and often counter-productive. However, he makes a few good points about poker tells.

Poker Advice

Hellmuth's advice contains a mixture of obvious pointers, shaky advice, and a few pearls of wisdom. You may learn a couple of things from the section on tells, but it is probably best if you just fast forward when he gives tips about bluffing. Unfortunately, this leaves you with about 10 minutes of the actual DVD to watch.

An example of his bad bluffing advice is when he talks about hands where he bluffs throughout the hand or how great players will call you with nothing because they know you have nothing. While this type of advice sounds cool, it's really bad for the target audience. Most people watching this DVD are probably beginning or intermediate players who make far too many loose calls. These players think they are some hotshot making a great calldown against a bluffer when they are really just donating their chips to the pot.

He also says that preflop and the flop are good times to bluff. While the flop certainly is a good time to bluff, few would argue that the preflop is a good time to bluff, unless you really need to steal the blinds in a tournament. He does not make this fact clear, which is to the detriment of his viewers' bankrolls.

However, he does give a couple of very good tips on tells. For example, his "#1 tip" (telling people to memorize how they put their chips into the pot when they bluff) is a very good pointer.


The presentation of the DVD could really have been improved. Phil talks pretty fast and frequently references hands he played in the past. It's hard for the viewer to follow the hands, much less glean information from his retelling of the story. If the producers took some more time and did slow, fictionalized flashbacks or perhaps displayed the example hands graphically, these stories would be helpful. Instead, they're just confusing.

Phil's personality certainly comes out in this DVD. Like him or not, he makes it a bit more interesting for the viewer with his brattish attitude.


Phil Hellmuth's Million Dollar Secrets to Bluffing and Tells can be purchased at Amazon

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