The Review of The Unpredictable Joker

Joker is hands down the most compelling and intricately crafted movies in 2019. It displays a man named Arthur Fleck and his subsequent fall into becoming the Joker, the infamous villain of the Batman series from DC. The movie glamourises violence with aspects of gore & mental illness, leading the audience into a world of death and ferociousness. Spoiler Alert. You read at your own risk.

As the credits roll the film takes itself to a man named Arthur Fleck, a party clown and an aspiring stand-up comedian. He lives in a dilapidated apartment with his mother, Penny in Gotham City. It is rife with criminals and unemployed citizens, teeming with impoverishment and cruelty. Arthur suffers from a mental condition that causes him to laugh at inappropriate moments and depends on social services for medication. After a gang of delinquents attack him in an alley, his co-worker Randall gives him a gun for protection, which soon leads him fired when his gun inadvertently falls out of his pocket while entertaining the children in a hospital. 

On the subway, still in his clown suit and makeup, he is attacked and beaten by three drunken Wayne enterprise businessmen, and he shoots them with Randall’s gun in self-defence. The murders are condemned by billionaire, Thomas Wayne, who classifies those envious of successful people as ‘clowns. Demonstrations against Gotham riches begin, with protesters cladding in clown masks like Arthur’s prop. Funding cuts the social services program, leaving Arthur without medication. 

Arthur’s comedy show begins poorly. He laughs uncontrollably and has difficulty in delivering his jokes. His idol talk host, Murray Franklin (Robert DeNiro) mocks Arthur by showing clips from his shows to the audiences at live. Arthur, then, finds a letter written by his mother to Thomas Wayne, stating that he is his father, and rebukes her for hiding the truth. Following a meeting with two detectives investigating Arthur’s involvement in the train murders, his mother suffers a stroke and is soon hospitalized. 

At a public event, in which Arthur sneaks inside, he confronts Thomas who tells him his mother is delusional and is not his biological mother. In denial, Arthur visits the Arkham states hospital and steals her case file; the file assures that Penny adopted Arthur as a baby and allowed her abusive boyfriend to harm them both. Distraught, Arthur goes to the hospital and kills Penny. 

Arthur is invited to appear on Murray’s show due to the popularity of his clips of the routines of his show. As he prepares, he is visited by Randall and fellow ex-colleague Gary. Arthur murders Randall but leaves Gary unharmed for treating him well in the past. On his way to the studio, he is pursued by the same detectives on the subway train filled with clown protesters. One detective accidentally shoots a protester and stirs up a riot. Arthur luckily escapes. 

Before the show goes on, Arthur requests to be introduced as the Joker. He walks out to applause, but tells morbid jokes, admits to his killings of the three men on the train and raves about how society mistreats and abandons the disenfranchised. Arthur fatally shoots Murray and is arrested as riots break loose and goes on a rampage. He is escorted in a police car but is freed by one of the rioters. He smears blood on his face in the form of a bloody and deathly smile and dances along to the cheers. 

Joker is a dark and gritty comical film, provided with standout performances by the main actor Joaquin Phoenix. The actor rises from ashes to produce us a spellbinding surprise. His acting as Arthur Fleck is realist and vivid, especially with scenes of his constrained laughter, which is bone chilling and moving at once. The tears running down his eyes as he laughs uncontrollably sends us a clear message that the character Arthur Fleck truly begs to weep, but only finds himself laughing instead. Which is empathetically depressing. 

He evokes pathos in the most terrifying way, which will forever engrave the film in shining gold for movie history. His movement, his dance, his antics and then his laugh. Oh my god his laugh, it just cannot begin anymore real than this. All his work makes us wonder why an actor like Joaquin Phoenix, a marvellous actor keeps such a low profile which renders us decoders to beg for more of him. Heath Ledger who played the Joker in the Dark Knight and passed recently after, he has passed on the life of the role as Joker and phoenix has taken that role to a whole new level. 

Other aspects of the film; the background music screams murder and death which is the soul of the movie itself if not the fall of Arthur Fleck’s madness. I find it to be a great depiction of how the world around you can influence you to the point of self-destruction, and become bitter to the world before you. It is not an unfamiliar depiction as you see it everywhere anytime. For those self-appointed critics who call it widely depressing and strongly disapprove the violence in it- there is a lot more happening in the real world we live in, and this film has just proven it. There is nothing in this film that is not already shown. 

No critic has spoken about the lead up to Arthur Fleck’s madness or paid attention to it. Why the world has provoked him into becoming the super villain in comic world. The revelation of his child abuse and adoption, the brutal beatings by the delinquents in the alley as well as the three businessmen on the train, his foolish co-worker, Randall, making him sacked from his job and of course being mocked so heartlessly by not only his favourite show host Murray but thousands of other folks too. If they walked on the same shoes as Arthur Fleck, will they remain the same or will they not follow even deeper into the dead end of nothingness as Arthur has? 

I recommend this film to anyone who enjoys violence and realism. Unless you are not sensitive to the aforementioned themes, I am sure this film will deliver a sense of insight on the rise of the Infamous Joker.  

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