First Glance: “The Card Counter”

Focus Features has finally given us our first look at Paul Schrader’s follow-up to his brilliant “First Reformed”. Once again sporting a tortured male as his central character, Schrader’s “The Card Counter” sees Oscar Isaac in the meaty lead role. He’s joined by an intriguing supporting cast that includes Tiffany Haddish, Tye Sheridan, and Willem Dafoe.

Isaac plays a former soldier turned gambler haunted by ghosts from his past. He becomes a mentor of sorts to a revenge-hungry young man (Sheridan) looking to pay back a certain Colonel (Dafoe) with links to both of their pasts. Tiffany Haddish also has prominent presence in the trailer although her character is surrounded by mystery. I love the cast with Haddish being the one exception. Can she tone down her loud high-energy routine for a role like this? I’m anxious to see.

“The Card Counter” premieres at the 2021 Venice Film Festival and opens wide September 10th. Check out the trailer below and let me know if you’ll be seeing it or taking a pass.

15 thoughts on “First Glance: “The Card Counter”

  1. I can’t look at Oscar Isaac these days without seeing a young Al Pacino. I just hope he doesn’t go for plastic surgery like Pacino did. To be honest, the trailer doesn’t grab me. I do like to see Tye Sheridan in a role outside of his usual inert material. I think he’s got a lot of potential.

  2. This could be the movie indeed where Haddish dials her schtick down a little — or a lot — and I would be very intrigued to see how she does. I’m certainly not a detractor but yeah she really does seem to have just the one setting.

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