The Card Counter, written and directed by Paul Schrader, was released on September 10th, 2021. Schrader is widely known for creating intense films such as Taxi Driver and First Reformed. The protagonist of The Card Counter, William Tell, is played by Oscar Isaac. The entire film is narrated by William, an ex-military integrator who begins to pursue gambling as a career. Throughout the film, he is often haunted by his past until eventually, he has to face it. We can see this in the many graphic flashbacks to his previous occupation that helps develop the story.
In the film, Tell Helps a young man named Cirk (Tye Sheridan), who is trying to seek revenge on a mutual enemy who has wronged them both. It is clear that Cirk has lost his way in the world and Tell feels as though helping him will atone for his previous sins. The young man tags along with Tell as he plays cards in various casinos and venues. They end up developing a relationship over their shared trauma and they gain each other’s mutual admiration. Eventually, Tell’s past catches up to them both.
This movie has many graphic scenes of violence so I would not recommend watching it if you’re easily disturbed. Some aspects of the movie are a bit confusing, but the overall pacing of the film seems just right. In my opinion, having such an elaborate plot makes the movie slightly hard to believe but still entertaining nonetheless. I was constantly on the edge of my seat, knowing that everything could go wrong at any given moment. If you are looking for something to watch with a solid story, interesting characters, and lots of suspense, I would recommend giving this movie a shot.