Tarot Review

If you take the chance to see this in theaters, it doesn’t matter what month you were born, your reading is all the same: boredom.

Tarot review

PLOT: When a group of friends recklessly violates the sacred rule of Tarot readings, they unknowingly unleash an unspeakable evil trapped within the cursed cards. One by one, they come face to face with fate and end up in a race against death.

REVIEW: I almost had to check my calendar and make sure we weren’t in January. Usually, this level of horror is relegated to those dark winter months so I was surprised to see Tarot getting a May release. And then even further shocked to not see a single advertisement for the film. I go to the theater a lot and yet I wasn’t exposed to a single Tarot trailer. Never a good sign of a film’s quality. But also brings the advantage of having absolutely nothing spoiled for me leading in. Even still, this film is so generic that I feel like I’d not only seen the trailer, but I’d already seen the entire movie two decades ago.

The story of Tarot follows a group of college friends as they’re off on a weekend getaway. In typical horror movie fashion, they find a mysterious deck of Tarot cards in the basement and decide to use them. What starts as simple astrology readings results in the death of the members of the friend group, correlating to their horoscope. Yes, it’s every bit as dumb as it sounds. Every cliché you can think of, they’ve got here. And given the PG-13 rating, expect tame kills and tired jump scares. With no true establishment of the villain’s powers, the script seems to be constantly making up the rules as it goes along.

Avantika in Tarot (2024).

I knew I was in for trouble when the film spent nearly ten minutes on Tarot readings. Each friend in the group has theirs read and essentially spells out the rest of the film. The acting is brutal and there lacks any sort of tension. I’ve always found astrology readings to be very dumb so the fact that they’re treated so scientific here is painful. Every reading is taken as an absolute fact. But don’t worry, there’s still a healthy dose of skepticism as characters are constantly wary of their own situation. However, it gets to the point of annoyance as they go back and forth on whether or not they’re cursed. Even after they’ve fully seen the supernatural beings and multiple friends have died. As you can probably tell, you’ll be rolling your eyes a lot during the film.

Jacob Batalon is the only member of the cast that even somewhat works. Harriet Slater‘s accent was constantly popping through and it was very distracting. I loved Avantika in the Mean Girls musical but she just blends into the background here. Thankfully she’s involved in the only interesting kill in the film. I’ll never claim that it’s essential for a horror movie to have a likable cast. It’s an added bonus though not entirely necessary. But if you’re not going to give me someone to root for then at least give me a villain to cheer on. Instead, we’re treated to one of the most unlikable casts imaginable and a villain with weak reasoning. The design of some of the creatures work well but they’re shot awkwardly and lit way too brightly.

Tarot is an unbelievably bad film that will result in more groans than actual scares. It’s increasingly frustrating as it goes along and is lacking in any kind of originality. The creature designs feel very “been there done that” and lack any true tension. The characters are all cliches, constantly making bad decisions. Even looking at it from a trash appreciation angle, it’s hard to see what this film brings to the table. Unlikeable characters, a generic villain, and a story so convoluted it’ll make your head spin. So if you take the chance to see this in theaters, it doesn’t matter what month you were born, your reading is all the same: boredom.






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About the Author

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Tyler Nichols is a horror fanatic who resides in Michigan and is always on the hunt for the next great film. When not scouring the internet for movie news, he is usually off watching something dark, writing nonsensical musings, or playing in some fantastical video game world. While horror takes up most of his time, he still makes time for films of all types, with a certain affinity for the strange and unusual. He’s also an expert on all things Comic Book Cinema. In addition to reviews and interviews here on JoBlo.com, Tyler also helps with JoBlo Horror Originals where he’s constantly trying to convince viewers to give lesser-known horror films a chance.