October 03, 2019

Joker is in theaters on October 4th, 2019.

Joker is the story of what can happen if someone struggling with mental illness gets pushed over the edge and believes that’s where they’ve belonged all along. DC is back bringing you its least DC movie yet, with the dramatic, character study of Arthur Fleck, played by Joaquin Phoenix. Fleck lives in the rough city of Gotham, where he works as a clown for hire, while trying to take care of his sick mother, and all of his own problems too.

Arthur suffers from a condition that forces laughter when he is in uncomfortable situations, causing him to be an outcast, and on occasion, a victim of violence. Phoenix delivers his own version of the “Joker” laugh, and I love the unique choice he’s made. His laughter delivers a subliminal message for the film, telling the audience that laughter doesn’t always portray happiness. Arthur’s laugh is uncontrollable, and at times painful, just like this movie is.

If I used one word to describe Joker, it would be uncomfortable. We follow a character that goes through so much, which makes the audience feel sympathetic for just long enough to make you terrified that you actually felt sorry for someone so dark and twisted. This film is a very slow burn, with pulses of excitement every so often, until the third act begins, and they blow the roof off of the place.

My biggest complaint with Joker is that we didn’t get as much “Joker” as I wanted. When Arthur makes his decision to become the Joker we all know and sadistically love, he controls every frame he’s in, and your eyes are glued to the screen. It’s sadly only about the last 30 minutes of the film, and it leaves you only wanting more, which we’ll never get. But this is the origin of the Joker, and it’s told in a unique way, while taking influences from movies such as Taxi Driver and King of Comedy.

Overall, I really enjoyed Joker. I think Joaquin Phoenix is a lock for a best actor nomination, he absolutely gave his all to this character and it shows. Joker will feel relevant without trying to, and make you think twice about how you treat the next stranger you see on the street. It’s a movie that somehow makes the audience its protagonist, forcing them to ask if we as a society are the cause for someone like Arthur to decide to become the Joker. Check this one out in theaters and be prepared to feel uncomfortable in all the right ways, I don’t think you’ll regret it.

Rating: 4.25 out of 5

LoganLogan (Senior Contributor) is a Texas native and a massive fan of all genres of film. You can find him talking about movies on YouTube or in line for the latest Star Wars/Comic Book film.
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