Watch: Il cartaio 2003 123movies, Full Movie Online – After the abduction of a British tourist in Rome, police inspector Anna Mari is contacted by the criminal, who self-entitles The Card Player, challenging the police department to dispute a video poker with him where the prize would be the life of the victim. The Chief of Police refuses to participate and the victim is tortured and killed in front of an Internet web cam. British detective John Brennan is assigned to investigate the case and when another woman is kidnapped, they invite the addicted player Remo to play for the police. Anna and John lead the investigation trying to disclose who might be the serial-killer..
Plot: Policewoman Anna Mari is forced to play a dangerous game with the title serial killer. If she loses, she witnesses the maniac’s tortured victims having their throats cut in explicit close-up detail via webcam. She teams up with British cop John Brennan to find out the identity of the murderer.
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|4.8/10 Votes: 5,415
|20% | RottenTomatoes
|48/100 | MetaCritic
|N/A Votes: 189 Popularity: 6.508 | TMDB
The Card Player’ directed and co-authored by leading Italian filmmaker, Dario Argento is quite different from what I expected, based on Argento” reputation based on his best known film, the horror classic, ‘Suspiria’ of about 20 years ago. This movie is much less Wes Craven and much more Alfred Hitchcock, although I think Argento does not quite measure up to the Great Hitchcock in his use of subtlety and surprise, although there are a few good surprises in this film.
While this movie was made by a thoroughly Italian cast and crew, except for Irish actor, Liam Cunningham, almost all the original dialog as we hear it in the film was spoken in English as it was filmed. Mistaking this for a horror film was easy based on the cover art and some of the blurbs on the package. And, these hints are not entirely misleading, as there is a fair amount of intentional horror based on a fairly extended threat of death to a victim seemingly unable to free herself from the situation, unlike Hitchcock’s secret threat, suddenly sprung on the unsuspecting victim as in ‘Psycho’.
The mechanics and most business of the story are ultramodern. The victims are kidnapped, bound, and gagged (albeit a bit amateurishly), and the prep sends an e-mail to a female police detective that in order to free the Vic, the police will need to have someone play computer poker with the prep, freeing the Vic by winning two out of three hands. The first victim is a British tourist, bringing the Irish detective attached to the UK consulate in Rome into the case. And, this detective happens to be a forensics expert, so a lot of his early investigations are straight out of the ‘CSI’ casebook. Although, none are so modern that you couldn’t see almost the identical business in a movie made 50 years ago, just as you see them in the murder / suicide investigation scene in Fellini’s ‘La Dolce Vita’.
Not only is the plot much more a thriller than a horror show, but the quality of the acting, directing, and camera work is high as well. Unfortunately, I feel the writing, in the implausibility of many plot turns, is just a bit too weak. While Argento may be one of the best known Italian filmmakers working today, his scripts fall far short of the great plot and dialog of Fellini and Bertolucci.
One of the very first weaknesses is in the way the police failed to play the contact with the prep. Given the chance to bring in an expert poker player to play the hands, that task falls wholly nilly to the female detective who is not only a poor poker player, but has a monkey on her back about gambling and poker, as her father committed suicide after a failure at cards. For the second kidnapping, the police happen upon a detective who knows something about poker, but who fails nonetheless. Only with the third victim do the police enlist the assistance of an expert computer poker player, who succeeds in effecting the release of the victim.
Explaining more implausibilities starts to give away some of the better parts of the plot, so I will stop there and note that this DVD has my very favorite feature, an audio commentary running the entire length of the film. The commentary is by the cinematic author, Alan Jones rather than by the director or his co-author or producer, but it’s pretty good. Since, as the commentator notes, Argento does not film in any of the well-known tourist locations (except for a brief glimpse of the Pantheon and a scene in the Tiber), but in the ‘real’ bourgeois’ Rome. So, commentator Jones gives us an orientation for where we are in Rome and on the events which help us understand the plot. He also points out the virtually total absence of blood in the film, which was a conscious decision by the director, since so many of his other films are so singularly bloody.
B-Movie Argento, but highly watchable.
One of the the great things about giallo is the blood and nudity. The serial killer takes the time to undress his victim before tossing her in the water, so we get to see everything.
A little Saw and a little “CSI”/”Criminal Minds”; this film features a new gimmick. We’ll play cards for the life of a girl.
As the game progresses, the killer ups the ante by capturing the Police Commissioner’s daughter and forcing the police to play for her life.
As the police close in on the Card Player, he manages to get Anna Mari in his clutches and forces her to play a game for her life. It was something of a silly ending.
Original Language it
Runtime 1 hr 43 min (103 min)
Rated Not Rated
Genre Horror, Mystery, Thriller
Director Dario Argento
Writer Dario Argento, Franco Ferrini
Actors Stefania Rocca, Liam Cunningham, Silvio Muccino
Awards 1 nomination
Production Company N/A
Sound Mix Dolby Digital
Aspect Ratio 1.85 : 1
Laboratory Cinecittà Laboratories, Roma, Italy
Film Length N/A
Negative Format 35 mm
Cinematographic Process Spherical
Printed Film Format 35 mm