Phil Hellmuth gives you 50 minutes of rambling and a lot of personal stories in this video, but not much more. The tells are mostly the same common sense tells that are covered in a plethora of other books and videos. Popular tells such as players who show signs of strength are often holding a weak hand or are bluffing and players that appear to be ‘looking out the window’ or showing signs of weakness are often holding a monster hand are discussed a bit with some stories of when this actually occurred to Phil. These stories, while letting you know that Phil Hellmuth is not as obnoxious and immature as he seems at the tables, offer very little as far as learning to play better poker. Contrary to the title, he doesn’t really give out any million dollar secrets in this one.
For the absolute beginner, I could see where this DVD might be useful, but there are other options available to get the same information. For example, a better source for this material is Mike Caro’s Book of Tells, which is far better in my opinion. Most VPP members probably have at least a bit of experience playing poker and thus they are unlikely to gain much of anything from watching this video. On a related note, I would read a book to get fact after fact, but when I watch a poker video I expect to see some actual video. One would expect a ‘poker tells video’ to show player’s facial expressions and examples of the actual tells, but that is not the case in Phil Hellmuth’s Million Dollar Secrets to Bluffing & Tells. Instead, this DVD is just Phil Hellmuth standing there with a stack of chips talking. This came out during the beginning of the big poker explosion a few years ago, when the televised poker shows first started exposing the game and its premium players to the mass population, and it looks like they did not spend much time thinking of useful content, but rather just wanted to get a series of videos out there with Phil Hellmuth on them to cash in. If you are a huge Hellmuth fan or have never before heard the terms ‘bluff’ or ‘tell’, this video could be interesting to you; for the rest of you, I would recommend passing on this one and making a better selection. For the record, I saw this video shortly after reading Caro’s book, and therefore I may have thought less of the movie as it offered me nothing more that I had just read.