Starring: Oscar Isaac, Tye Sheridan, Tiffany Haddish, Willem Dafoe
Crime drama written and directed by Paul Schrader. The Card Counter (2021) centers on William Tell (Oscar Isaac), an ex-military interrogator turned gambler who’s life is shattered when he is approached by Cirk (Tye Sheridan), a young man seeking help to execute his plan for revenge on a mutual enemy from their past, Major John Gordo (Willem Dafoe). Gaining backing from gambling financier La Linda (Tiffany Haddish), Tell takes Cirk with him on the road, going from casino to casino until the trio set their sights on winning the World Series of Poker in Las Vegas. However, things get difficult when Tell realizes that trying to keep Cirk on the right path proves to be an impossible task as he gets dragged back into the darkness of his past.
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We’ll add the best quotes once the movie is released and we’ve had a chance to watch it, but for now, here’s a small selection.
William Tell: This is how it starts. It builds and builds, has a life of its own.
William Tell: There’s a weight a man can accrue. The weight created by his past
actions. It is a weight which can never be removed.
William Tell: Having been sentenced to ten years in prison, I learned to count cards.
William Tell: Poker is all about waiting. Then something happens.
William Tell: Is it possible to know when one reaches the limit?
Cirk: [to Tell] How did you do that?
La Linda: You count cards, right?
William Tell: I’m not that smart.
La Linda: But you win.
La Linda: You need someone to stake you.
William Tell: That’s what you do? You run a stable?
La Linda: I’m always looking for a good thoroughbred.
Cirk: [to Tell, referring to Gordo] You remember him?
Major John Gordo: This is where all the good stuff happens.
Cirk: They made you the fall guy.
William Tell: You need to back off.
Cirk: You might want a piece of what I’m going to do.
William Tell: And what is that?
Cirk: Set things straight.
La Linda: [to Cirk, referring to Tell] You’ve been around him. He’s a mystery. And I don’t know if that’s a good thing or a bad thing.
William Tell: This is how it starts. Just a fleeting thought. Then it builds.
La Linda: [to Tell] It doesn’t matter to me if you did something bad in your past.
La Linda: You have to be the strangest poker player I ever met.
William Tell: Oh, you have no idea.
William Tell: Nothing, nothing, can justify what we did.
Major John Gordo: We are each responsible for our own actions.
William Tell: You know the phrase tilt? Just like in pinball, any man can tilt. You could tilt.