Joker (2019) Review 

RATING: 8.5/10

In Todd Phillip’s Joker, Joaquin Phoenix takes on the role of Arthur Fleck in one of the most anticipated films this fall. With the making of approximately $737.5 million in the global box office, the film is expected to become the highest-grossing-R-rated movie of all time. The DC film has garnered praise and Oscar buzz for Phoenix’s possible nomination in the Oscars 2020.

The film begins in the year of 1981 when Arthur Fleck struggles to conform with societal norms in Gotham City. Living off of the salary of a party clown in one of the most impoverished areas of Gotham, Arthur yearns to one day be a stand-up comedian. He encounters obstacles that stiffen his endeavors, as he suffers from a disorder that causes him to involuntarily laugh at improper moments, making him the target of verbal and physical harassment. The film details Arthur’s evolution into one of DC Comics’ most iconic antagonist through his learning of lies and betrayal, and how his creation of the Joker birthed a new beginning for him.

Joker comprehensively shows the development of the villain in a way that has never been done in the past with other antagonists. Todd Phillip’s interpretation of Joker’s story engages the audience in a spiral of emotions manifested through the writing of the dialogue, the choice of color in scenes, and the outstanding and captivating performance Phoenix delivers.  

By Joylyn Gong

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