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Topic: Joker Movie? - SPOILERS begin Pg. 15 Post ReplyPost New Topic
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John Harrison
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Joined: 27 July 2007
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Posted: 01 November 2019 at 3:13pm | IP Logged | 1 post reply

I was bored and went and saw it the other day.

The problem w the film is there is no meat on the bone. Is it about The Joker's origin? Depending on how you interpret the ending maybe not.  Is it about the failure of society to take care of the mentally ill? Is it about the poor medical coverage for mental health issues among the poor?  Is it about the 1% and the 99?  These things are touched upon and discarded.

Is this some kind of false narrator type of movie like Fight Club or The Unusual Suspects where at the end you the viewer realize you have been led down a false road w some kind of revelation?  Again maybe it isn't clear

Did DC decide to make an art house type of movie w an IP they own to do something different?   I guess but using The Joker for this was a poor choice besides the name recognition.  Again even it's even hard say art house indie type of comparison when the movie is clearly pointing to other films like King of Comedy.   

It's not a horrible movie by any means but its not great.  It's something to catch on cable if your so inclined

And to leave w a positive note Joaquin Phoenix is mesmerizing to watch in it 


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Shane Matlock
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Posted: 01 November 2019 at 7:28pm | IP Logged | 2 post reply

I liked this movie a lot but he really doesn't seem like the JOKER from the comics. 
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Christopher Frost
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Posted: 01 November 2019 at 8:34pm | IP Logged | 3 post reply

Given that the Joker has been inconsistently portrayed over the years, both in the comics and in other media, is it really that strange that the film offers a slightly different take on him?
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Rob Ocelot
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Posted: 05 November 2019 at 11:03pm | IP Logged | 4 post reply

 David Miller wrote:
Yeah, I didn't buy my ticket expecting to deposit a nickel into Glitter's prison commissary account, and didn't appreciate my unwitting complicity.

Allow me to walk you two steps backwards for a second.

I totally understand why you feel you've been unknowingly duped into rewarding a criminal.   

In a broader context by willingly paying money to see a film that glorifies (and in some ways celebrates) the actions of a killer psychopath and promotes not-so-civil disobedience we are in a roundabout way rewarding Hollywood and encouraging more films of a similar ilk to be made.   The so-called 'Deadpool Effect' -- no one had a box office smash R-rated comic book film before DEADPOOL and now we will have a slew of them because the money stinks.  

I'll admit I'm guilty of doing this.   I paid money to see this film because the fuss over it piqued my curiosity -- and I wanted to see how well it matched up with my own head-canon origin for the Joker (for the record it didn't, except for some of the broader strokes).   The film however does hold a funhouse mirror up to you and asks "Who in their right mind would go see a disgusting movie like this?".  Good art should challenge you and make you ask questions you never thought to ask.  

The jury is still out over whether JOKER is good art though.

(as later posters have pointed out -- GG is not making money off the use of the song in the film but I still think it's valid to be upset by the song's inclusion.   Someone had to approach the rights holders to license the song. Someone had to incorporate it into the soundtrack. The film was shown to test audiences with the song included.   There were plenty of opportunities for those in charge to speak up and say "Maybe we shouldn't put this in here".   It's inclusion is meant to provoke.  It's the musical equivalent to the "Piss Christ".)


Edited by Rob Ocelot on 05 November 2019 at 11:06pm
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Daniel Gillotte
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Posted: 06 November 2019 at 8:44am | IP Logged | 5 post reply

Just some quick thoughts-

Joaquin Phoenix IS incredible. His movements and use of his body is truly something special and compelling and disturbing. Damn. In many ways I was surprised at just how good he would be.

The cinematography is perfect- gritty AF, bleak, dingy. The "texture" of the film sells the horror/ tragedy that Gotham had become. 

The "imagined" scenes worked better than I would have thought. When he first connects with his neighbor, it made my head turn some but then I bought it reasonably well. To reveal that it was all in his head was powerful. 

I think one reading of this film is that Joker is a true sad sack, mentally ill person who dreams of greatness (maybe even somehow thinks he deserves it, despite the rest of the world telling him, NOPE) and when pushed to use his gun, ala Bernie Goetz, finally feels power and the psychopathic villain Joker emerges. From that point, he is (nearly entirely) irredeemable, especially when he visits his imaginary gf. neighbor. The one "problem" with his embrace of psychotic behavior though is when he lets the little person clown go. The tension in that seen as he says that he won't hurt the guy and he tries to leave is wickedly powerful but ultimately letting him go seemed like a mistake by the director, a "slip" out of the character they had just presented. (It would have also been far more like the psychotic darker comic version for Joker to say, "I won't hurt you" and then horribly demonstrate that he was "just kidding".

I think the subtext that he is considered an anti-hero isn't about him being a psychopath, but it's about the way that the public perceives him in killing the rich 1 percenters. They don't know that he killed his kind and lovely neighbor and his mom and others. They have made him a symbol ONLY for standing up to the apparent powers that be.

I thought the ending in the office of the psychiatrist was very strange tonally. It was shot somewhat differently as I recall. It seemed somewhat dream like (especially with him running Keystone Kops style at the end) but it also makes me wonder if this is also supposed to be read as a fabricated version of his life that he just told some psychiatrist and none of it can be believed?

I hated the Batman and Thomas Wayne stuff as a comic fan. I don't think the film needed it at all really. If it kept the Thomas Wayne stuff and ditched the meeting with li'l brucie, I might have also appreciated it more.

As an exploration of a disturbed soul, this film is very interesting, strong and probably worth watching and talking about.

As an "origin" story of The Joker, I say, nope.

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Jonathan A. Dowdell
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Posted: 06 November 2019 at 8:58am | IP Logged | 6 post reply

Couldn't you make the argument that this Joker is not Batman's Joker? That there could be another guy, inspired by the Arthur Fleck's movement, who meets Batman and falls into a vat of chemicals?
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Fred J Chamberlain
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Posted: 06 November 2019 at 9:13am | IP Logged | 7 post reply

You could........ but then the question that comes to mind is, “why would
you?” It overcomplicates an origin that has no need of complicating.
There are a variety of very serviceable Joker origin stories out there.
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