The Card Counter

The Card Counter ★½

This is the kind of bad where you suspect there’s some investor charity going on. This project had no business employing Willem Defoe or Oscar Isaac, or finding its way into theaters. Straight to Starz writing, direction, editing, and acting. No tension or sense of threat yet constantly brooding, no relationship between odds, gambling, risk, and the course of events, very detailed card counting tutorial with no payoff, AI-generated chit chat, odd fascination with sniping at “Asians”, unrelenting implausibly verbose and overwrought interior monologues, incessant drink ordering, an agreement that if you promise to visit your mom, I will promise to get laid THAT ACTUALLY MATERIALIZES INTO THE PLOT, zero sexual chemistry or plausible relationship development between characters having sex, and an overlong closing ET/Elliot finger touching  shot

Oscar Isaac: [turns off loud music]
Tye Sheridan: “who are you, God?”

Oscar Isaac [an ex-Abu Ghraib torture interrogator]: Is there an end to punishment? Is there a limit to the amount of effort it takes to merit expiation?

Random one-off appearance of 3 foot tall letters highlighting the spoken acronym S.E.R.E., which you never ever need to know again

Repeated thrusting of a phone into the screen emphasizing how google earth can find houses

Mid-game poker tournament abort by a man who carries an iphone in a casino with wifi to drive to a hotel to use his laptop to determine if there are any web news articles about his new protégé

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