Starting off with a boastful A rating from the Cinema Evaluation Board (CEB) a director who joins the elite members of Palanca Awards for Literature Hall of Fame, bankable lead stars and a dependable supporting cast, Tarot, an early Halloween treat from Regal Films holds nothing but high expectations from the viewers. Oh yes it does meet expectations, only if people go to see it for nothing but a good scare.
Tarot is a story of Cara (Marian Rivera) who inherits psychic powers through a deck of special cards from her Lola Auring (Gloria Romero). She was not able to use it for a long period of time due to her mother’s objection. Not until she lost her fiancé during a trip to a forest that she feels a call for its necessity. Things turn out to be not the way she wants it when she unlocks the portal to a strange yet an unknowingly familiar world.
The plot seems tight, simple and easy to tell, but the movie experience is a contradiction. The storytelling treads on a long crisscross road because of the many subplots that give doubts to the viewers if they would go somewhere. Somehow they meet in a certain point but the connection is a bit obscured. Thus it ends not the way you would want it.
The acting is commendable except for Ana Capri’s over-acting. She used to be a good actress back then. Good thing veteran actresses Gloria Romero and Celia Rodriguez are up to trim whatever exceeds and add something to whatever is lacking in the acting department. Lead star Marian Rivera proves she’s more than just a pretty face. Her performance signals her readiness for more challenging roles. She’s almost there. Dennis Trillo and Roxanne Guinoo take on their respective roles fairly well.
Good camera shots matched with effective scoring and sound effects and taut editing are the film’s strongest points. I think these are Jun Lana’s forte in directing. With all these, Tarot turned out to be an offspring of his Mag-ingat ka sa Kulam last year. The film is meant to scare and that’s it.
Had the actors worn minimal make-up, I would have given the film a four-star rating.
Rating: * * * 1/2