Joker Review

Matthew Rodriguez, Staff Writer

Joker is written and directed by Todd Phillips, who’s best know for the Hangover trilogy. Joker stars Joaquin Phoenix as Arthur Fleck, a failed stand-up comedian with a mental illness that has him laughing uncontrollably at random times. When Arthur is bullied and trashed by society he slowly transitions into madness and becomes the clown prince of crime we all know. Joaquin Phoenix is amazing in this movie! He’s done something with the Joker laugh that is brilliant. When he laughs you can hear the pain in his voice. It’s really an interesting take on the laugh that fits the character really well. The movie also looks beautiful. The cinematography is great along with the color palette as well. The direction by Phillips is is pretty good too along with his script. You really get a good feeling of the situation and it brings you in as you are really experiencing the movie first-hand. The violence in the movie (which there is a lot of) really gets you when it happens. Timing for certain scenes really helps bring the movie all together, whereas if the timing was poor it would feel expected or rushed. My problems with the movie are where Todd Phillips took inspiration from the movie from. I’m not talking about if the movies he took inspiration from are bad, but how much he took from those movies. The movies he took inspiration from are both Scorsese films Taxi Driver and King of Comedy. He’s taken so much from both of these movies that it almost feels like a rip off. There are certain scenes taken straight from Taxi Driver such as where Arthur is in front of the TV and he has his gun out, which is a obvious rip off of where Travis does the same in front of the TV. From the framing of the scene and the lighting, it’s bad. The score is good, maybe earning an Oscar nomination. Joaquin Phoenix deserves an Oscar nomination as well, and the film itself does too. I’ll going to give Joker a 9.5/10, one of the best films of the year.