Hey bookworms! Long time, no talk, but I will explain more when I can. I saw Joker with my lovely boyfriend on Saturday (11/16). I have a lot of thoughts on this movie, like the couple who decided to take their young children to the movie like one was 4 or 5…? Anywho this is kinda gonna be a review, my thoughts on it and the character, and a partial analysis. I am rusty at this but I miss sharing my thoughts with you all, so please be kind.
Movie Title: Joker
Release Date: 4 October 19
Film Company: Warner Bros
Genre: Crime, Drama, Thriller
Director: Todd Phillips
Starring: Joaquin Phoenix, Robert DeNiro, Zazie Beetz
Format Watched in: In Theaters
Runtime: 122 minutes
My Rating: 2.5 Out of 5 Stars
Before I get this started, I am gonna be honest I am not the biggest DC fan. By not the biggest, I mean the spectrum of what I’ve watched is Cartoon Network’s original Teen Titans Go! and some of the newer versions of the same comics. I’ve always been more of a Marvel girl. I’m not by no means saying one is better than the other, but I am disclosing I don’t know much.
Why I Chose to Watch It
1. I chose to watch it, I really like Joaquin Phoenix. He has played some good roles in films that I’ve watched with him and he has always brought authenticity and genuine feeling to each role and film he has been in. Knowing he was cast as this controversial character I thought, he would make me have genuine feelings, empathy, and understand this character.
2. After all this time, I was still hearing the hype of this movie, and I know normally I am not one to jump on the bandwagon while it’s still in theaters, and if I am still curious about it after it comes out of theaters, I redbox it. That being said with this movie it is all I heard about whenever I was at work or out and about, so it was only a matter of time before I got spoiled on key points.
3. It is an origin story, I am a huge sucker for these, I love knowing why people act the way the do, what shaped them on the path they were on. Was it a circumstance of nature or nurture? Fate or Decision? These are all things that I think about when I read or watch about any character whether they’re a hero, villain, or Anti-hero (which are my favorite), but that is a story for another day. So when I saw the preview for this of such a iconic character. It had my curiosity and brain going.
4. My boyfriend was visiting, and when he comes here I finally have the movie buddy I need. We usually pick one or two each and this was his choice and I asked him to wait to watch it, so I could treat him to this as a Christmas present. Don’t get me wrong I love a violent movie, but more so when it comes to action, but when it comes to Thrillers/ horror, I am the biggest baby and I am not ashamed to admit it, like majority of it in his chest or shoulder. He enjoys both DC and Marvel so this was something, he enjoyed.
What Caused Problems for Me
1. I couldn’t separate the art from the artist, now what I mean is Joaquin went VERY method in this. Which I can understand with what everything Joker is put through in this movie and the character’s life. The thing that makes method acting hard for me is with the extreme weight loss or gain for an actor based on a character. Seeing an actor at their own healthy weight and seeing the drastic change. I shudder, that being said Joaquin lost a lot of weight for this movie I am talking can see how his shoulder was dislocated, count his ribs, and every notch of his spine. Every time seeing him with a shirt off I was beyond uncomfortable, like cringing and wanting to cry at the sight of his body. It didn’t gain sympathy for Joker as I couldn’t see the character but only the actor.
2. Was his health really the cause for what he went through. Now don’t get me wrong I’ve been picked on and bullied for my own health both mental and physical, but I’ve chosen to take the right steps in life even if I’ve only had myself in my own corner. He chose to put a lot of blame on other people, the ones that mocked him, his parents, his coworkers. I am not negating his right to be angry especially when the children were horrid, or his coworker threw him under the bus. I know he had trauma and his disability that but his track was extreme. I know he is the villain, but I heard you were supposed to feel bad for him. Point blank I just didn’t, if anything it made me more scared of him.
The Good Parts
1. I liked how it emphasized that the mental health care system is struggling, and yes I knew this movie took place in the 70’s, but history is really repeating itself here. It is showing our economy or country. We work jobs that don’t give us the best insurance, or we don’t have the resources to find a job understanding of our disabilities or needs. This was an important theme and yes, I may have been reading too much into the movie, but it is important and hopefully the voice will lead to a change.
2. The questioning between realities, what was the reality of the real world and what was in Joker’s head and even in his own mother’s mind. It led to so many great plot twists and made you want certain things to be cannon. This was the part that made you feel the real empathy for him, when you thought he had someone who cared about him, to have that really ripped away when the “truth” hit. I love movies that make you question what is real.
I hope I am not stepping on anybody’s toes with these differing opinions or that I am not part of the fandom, but it was really fun to share and get out my thoughts about such a poignant movie.
I know this was a movie that pointed out that we shouldn’t pretend, we’re not feeling what we are, or aren’t hurting on the inside when you are bleeding. That is an important theme and I embrace it, but I’m not gonna let it run my life, I am still gonna stand for what I need and deserve in a way that helps me and not destroy others. You are your own hero and own worst villain.
What were your thoughts on this movie, did you share any of mine, or are you able to now? Am I wrong in my thoughts? Do you have any differing thoughts? Let’s have a healthy, debate/ conversation in the comments. I hope this wasn’t as rough as I think it is. I missed you all and hope you enjoyed hearing from me as much as I did writing this. I will leave the trailer below for you.