Joker Movie Review

James Fink, Staff Reporter

Joaquin Phoenix lost 52 pounds and may have developed some mental health issues while preparing for his role in the Joker.

The Joker is a movie about a man named Arthur Fleck who lives in a city called Gotham. Living with his mother and struggling with psychological issues, he has a lot of trouble holding over a job. He works as a clown for hire, but due to his poor decisions, that falls through. While trying to take care of his sick mother and get by without a job, Arthur Fleck fights to hold onto the tiny strand that is his sanity. But with the way that he is treated by the rest of society, that tiny strand is eventually cut. The Joker portrays Arthur Fleck’s transition from a person with severe mental issues to becoming the Joker. 

Traditionally, the role of the Joker has been a support character for various Batman movies. This movie is interesting as it takes a different as it shows a different view than the rest of the movies the Joker has been in. The Joker has always been a villain and you tend to dislike him in other movies because he causes a lot of trouble. While he causes a lot of trouble in this movie, you don’t end up dispising him as much. You see the struggle that he has endured and while you disagree with what he does, you understand why he does it and you feel bad for him.

The movie opened strong making $93.5 million in its first weekend after being released, and I can’t help but give all the credit to Joaquin Phoenix. His immense preparation in losing weight and developing a bone-chilling laugh helped to visualize the sickly man that was Arthur Fleck. 

Some people argue that this movie depicts people with mental health issues as evil and dangerous. Despite a lot of controversy around this issue, I believe that the movie shows how a poor person with mental health issues can have their problems emphasized by being ignored by the rest of society. 

The end of the movie was good in that it opened up the possibility for more movies, but it is fine standing alone. Joker is one of the most disturbing movies I have ever seen and one of the very few that I would pay to go see again.