Well it took me a month, but I finally saw Joker.
Like IT 2, it took me awhile to finally see Joker. With a horrifyingly busy schedule, it’s been difficult to get into the theater, but last night? I FINALLY DID! This is a movie that a lot of people have been following since it was announced.
Joker follows the slow decent into madness of Arthur Fleck. If you know your Batman comics, Arthur Fleck becomes the legendary villain, The Joker. Joker has been made into a legendary role to play, with Heath Ledger probably holding the trophy for the most memorable. Actors like Jack Nicholson, Mark Hammill, Ceaser Romero, Jared Leto, have all taken up the role as the character and all gave their own interpretations of it….so how can Joaquin Phoenix hold up to those actors?
My Quick Review of Joker…
A unique and original take on a classic character that was masterfully written.
This is a wonderful movie, and what’s really good about it….is that you don’t have to see or know ANYTHING about Batman to understand it. Even if you have no idea what a Batman is? It doesn’t matter…this is a film about one mans decent into madness as he sees the world being controlled by the rich and ignoring the poor. He wants to bring joy and smiles to the world, but understands that the only way to bring joy…is to bring chaos…and this film is him discovering that.
This movie is about the character that is Arthur, and watching him discover who he is, what he is, where he came from…and the writers did an amazing job of leaving no stone un-turned. I felt very satisfied and had very little if ANY questions at the end of the movie. At the beginning he is just a guy trying to find his way in life, support his mother…but by the end, he starts to see the world for what it truly is.
Joaquin Phoenix understood that wonderfully. He didn’t do the ‘stereotypical comic book Joker’ stuff..like colorful fun jokes. Phoenix portrayed him as a broken man that gets the joy out of death, chaos, and making the world a better place by no longer putting smiles on faces, but driving fear into their souls. When people heard that Phoenix would be the ‘next Joker’…instant doubt flooded of course…but just wait and see what happens…and he did his own interpretation that was terrifying.
Joker at one point is told that his life is a tragedy, which he then replies…’No, it’s a comedy.’ Which the literary definition of comedy if I can remember right is ‘tragedy + timing’…I think that’s right. That’s the kind of writing that you have to catch to get it.
I’d consider this as one of the best movies of 2019.