Touch of Evil (1958)When a card is drawn, the tarot reader connects the card’s meaning to the recipient. This practice, whether you’re a believer or a skeptic, creates a riveting cinematic moment. “Your future’s all used up,” the fortune-teller (Marlene Dietrich) says to the anti-hero in Touch of Evil. There are a few important moments in this scene that must be analyzed. The reading is brief but nonetheless daunting, and the ambiance is shadowed. Every detail, from the psychic’s eerie dialogue to the way the man sloppily disassembles the deck, leaves a pit in the audience’s stomach.
Dr. Terror’s House of Horrors (1965)Every tarot reader has his/her personal signature. Perhaps it’s the manner that they lay out the cards or how they explain a card’s meaning. In this case, Dr. Terror asks the recipients to tap the cards three times prior to the reading. He uses his tarot cards, which he calls the House of Horrors, to predict the death of five men aboard the train. Upon explaining that the first four tarot cards chosen will predict their destiny, the men are clearly skeptical. While they crack jokes about past experiences with gypsies, Dr. Terror interjects. “The tarot deck is a serious matter. The cards predict the truth, the supernatural truth. Always.” (Reading begins at 5:27. Full movie available below).
Dead Alive (1992)It’s unsurprising that horror films and thrillers often feature tarot. The unsettling feeling before a reading does add a nice touch on the big screen. Discussions about one’s future, particularly when it relates to death and misfortune, is anything but delightful. In the film Dead Alive, a young woman is seeking clarity on her love life. An interesting bit to mention is that once the cards are drawn, they take the form of both the woman herself as the Queen of Swords and her future love as the Knight of Swords. But this is nowhere near a fairytale story.
“The One with the Hypnosis Tape” (1994 to 2004)To ease the terrifying tarot tension portrayed in the previous films, here’s an episode of Friends that shows Phoebe shuffling and placing tarot cards on the table. Now, she doesn’t actually give a reading during this episode but simply having the cards in the background while Rachel is discussing hypnosis methods for Chandler to stop smoking is enough to draw accurate conclusions. This adds to Phoebe’s spiritual personality and pushes along the narrative that with the presence of tarot cards and the use of a hypnosis tape, Chandler’s bad habit will end. https://youtu.be/MldH09kaSoQ
The Mortal Instruments: City of Bones (2013)This action and fantasy film, which is based on the first book in the series The Mortal Instruments, uses tarot cards in both a comedic and dramatic way to drive the plot. This reading unlocks the protagonist’s past, which was stolen from her memories. Clearly a non-believer, she reminds the tarot reader that she doesn’t believe in psychic readings. But this wariness soon dissipates. The scene uses tarot as a tool for self-discovery and even implements magic as well, showing the tarot card lift into the woman’s palm without any manipulation. (Reading begins at 18:49. Full movie available below). https://youtu.be/gMyCfg8MZw8
In the Palm of Your HandThe art of tarot is specific to its creator. No deck is entirely the same, which is why we offer complete customization options. From custom card sizes to your personal artwork, we produce quality tarot cards and related accessories that reflect all of your individual styles and desired preferences. Here’s a look into our process.
- Select your own artwork or photography, or use pre-existing images.
- Choose from top-quality paper, PVC or plastic card stocks with smooth, linen or matte finishes.
- Use your unique card size or shape.
- Apply your design to both sides of every card.
- Pick the custom-printed packaging (tuck or setup boxes, cases, tins, etc.) that’s right for you.
About Shuffled Ink
Shuffled Ink is a multigenerational family business that specializes in printing custom playing cards, tarot & flash cards, custom card games, packaging and more for businesses and individuals worldwide.
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