2.3 C
New York
Wednesday, December 2, 2020
Advertisement

Joker (Movie Review)

One of the most anticipated films of the Fall 2019 season is Joker. The film stars Joaquin Phoenix (Her, You Were Never Really Here) as the titular character and is co-written and directed by Todd Phillips (The Hangover, War Dogs). I should preface this review by saying that this tale of the Joker exists as a standalone film, and as of this writing, there are no further plans to continue on with a sequel based off of the events. It’s a one-shot. Joker also has nothing to do with the past and future Batman film(s) currently in production.

Arthur Fleck (Phoenix) lives with his ailing mother in a dilapidated apartment complex, where he spends his days working as a clown, entertaining children one day, to wielding those business signs that promote business on the street. He is continuously assaulted in a lawless Gotham City by folks that prey on the weak. He has a condition that makes him breakout into spastic moments of laughter and also carries laminated cards that describe this condition to those that may be bothered by his behavior. The only thing that keeps Arthur motivated to carry on is that of talk-show host and entertainer Murray Franklin (Robert De Niro). Arthur fantasizes about being a successful comedian and hopes to one day be on Murray’s show. Anther glimpse of light in Arthur’s bleak existence is that of his beautiful neighbor Sophie (Zazie Beetz). She lives down the hall from him and enjoys his company and his standup routine. She acts a support system in Arthur’s life.

Things begin to disintegrate for Arthur when Gotham City makes cuts to the mental health budget of its operations. Arthur loses access to his medication and case worker. As Arthur begins to go down the rabbit hole, so to speak, he becomes a bit less uninhibited at every turn. This will ultimately lead to very dangerous business as Fleck will eventually have to come to terms of who he really is.

Joaquin Phoenix in Joker (2019)
Joaquin Phoenix in Joker (2019)

The hype machine is real with Joker. Joaquin Phoenix delivers a powerhouse performance that will surely lead to an Oscar nomination. Todd Phillips direction, much on the heels of classics such as Taxi Driver and King of Comedy also deserves a lot of credit for this piece of art. The year the film takes place is never mentioned but one can say it was sometime in the early 1980’s maybe – it’s never mentioned. Gotham City is a crime infested cesspool and some of the events going on in the film mirror our own in these trying times. One of the more shocking scenes that caught me off guard was that of Thomas Wayne’s (Brett Cullen) characterization. He was a bully and basically blamed the poor for being poor. It reminded me of Donald Trump and I may not be the only one who thinks that.

Leading up to Joker’s release there was some controversy that the film glorified violence but that is unfounded, even after seeing the film. There is no such thing. Yes, the Joker is a psychotic sociopath, with homicidal tendencies, but that’s a given and it’s true to the comic book source. To take it any other way would be foolish.

I can honestly say that Joker is a triumph of cinema and filmmaking. It deserves to be seen on the big screen. It also shines a light on its two biggest influences – Taxi Driver and King of Comedy. I would also say that the only bummer of the film is that it is, for all intents and purposes, a one-shot film. Unless the Gods of persuasion can get Phillips and Phoenix back together for a follow-up, this is as good as it’s ever going to get. Joker is highly recommended.

Joker is in theaters October 4, 2019 (USA)



4.5 / 5 TheaterByte Rating
{{ reviewsOverall }} / 5 Users (0 votes)
BRON Studios | Creative Wealth Media Finance | DC Comics | DC Entertainment | Joint Effort | Village Roadshow Pictures | Warner Bros.Studios & Distributors
R (for strong bloody violence, disturbing behavior, language and brief sexual images)Rating Certificate
USACountry
EnglishLanguage
121 Mins.Run Time
1.85:1Aspect Ratio
Todd PhillipsDirector
Todd Phillips | Scott SilverWriter
4 October 2019Release Date
The Film
Summary
Joaquin Phoenix plays a gritty version of the legendary DC Comics supervillain the Joker, as Arthur Fleck, a social pariah in Gotham City who becomes the psychopath we all know. The role should garner phoenix an Oscar nod.
What people say... Login to rate
Order by:

Be the first to leave a review.

User Avatar User Avatar
Verified
{{{ review.rating_title }}}
{{{review.rating_comment | nl2br}}}

This review has no replies yet.

Avatar
Show more
Show more
{{ pageNumber+1 }}

Advertisement

Related Articles

FX Original Black Narcissus (TV Series Review)

A buttoned-up remake of the classic 'Black Narcissus' in the form of a 3-episode series that portrays the physical and emotional struggle of English nuns to establish a school in a remote palace in the Himalayas.

Perry Mason: The Complete First Season (Blu-ray Review)

A complex neo-noir origin story for the famous criminal defense attorney gets a gorgeous Blu-ray release from Warner Bros.

Popeye: 40th Anniversary Edition (Blu-ray Review)

An excellent release on Blu-ray of this long maligned but still fun to watch film.

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

Stay Connected

301FansLike
0FollowersFollow
724FollowersFollow
- Advertisement -

Notice of Compliance with FEDERAL TRADE COMMISSION 16 CFR Part 255

In accordance with the Federal Trade Commission 16 CFR part 255 guidelines, this website hereby states that it receives free discs and other theatrical or home entertainment “screeners” and access to screening links from studios and/or PR firms, and is provided with consumer electronics devices on loan from hardware manufacturers and/or PR firms respectively for the purposes of evaluating the products and its content for editorial reviews. We receive no compensation from these companies for our opinions or for the writing of reviews or editorials.
Permission is sometimes granted to companies to quote our work and editorial reviews free of charge. Our website may contain affiliate marketing links, which means we may get paid commission on sales of those products or the services we write about. Our editorial content is not influenced by advertisers or affiliate partnerships. This disclosure is provided in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR § 255.5: Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.

Latest Articles

FX Original Black Narcissus (TV Series Review)

A buttoned-up remake of the classic 'Black Narcissus' in the form of a 3-episode series that portrays the physical and emotional struggle of English nuns to establish a school in a remote palace in the Himalayas.

Perry Mason: The Complete First Season (Blu-ray Review)

A complex neo-noir origin story for the famous criminal defense attorney gets a gorgeous Blu-ray release from Warner Bros.

Popeye: 40th Anniversary Edition (Blu-ray Review)

An excellent release on Blu-ray of this long maligned but still fun to watch film.

The Hobbit: The Motion Picture Trilogy (4K Ultra HD Blu-ray Review)

The Hobbit: The Motion Picture Trilogy is arriving for the first time on 4K Ultra HD remastered in Dolby Vision and overseen by Peter...

TheaterByte’s Holiday Gift Guide for 2020

Let’s focus on the donut here: BEST Home Entertainment Holiday EVER.
%d bloggers like this: