Tag: Joker

Member Post

 

A thought experiment.  New York City appears either as allegorical (Gotham City is a proxy for New York in the Batman series) or as itself (in the Avengers) and, departing the Super hero realm, has featured prominently in the denouement to the Bourne Series (“We’re going mobile!) and The Three Days of the Condor (“How […]

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Writing on Oscar Movies

 

This was the year of Scorsese, even if only two people say so — the three-Oscar-winning writer-director-producer of the four-Oscar-winning Parasite, Bong Joon-ho — and me. Tarantino should have swept the Awards, but the Academy still desperately hopes that a sufficient number of sufficiently clever and sentimental auteurs will save cinema from the twin evils of Disney, perpetually snubbed, and Netflix, perpetually snubbed despite throwing hundreds of millions of dollars at winning a Best Picture Oscar.

Recent victorious auteurs include the insightful, but irresponsible enemy of liberalism Jordan Peele, the uninspired, sentimental Guillermo del Toro, his more insightful friend who’s absolutely clueless about the world we live in, Alejandro Inarritu — to say nothing of the other moralistic winners based on the hope that finally Hollywood will fix America’s race problems: Green Book, Moonlight, 12 years of slave…

Who’s the Joker Now?

 

For many, the attacks on the Joker movie coming from media outlets like CNN and the New York Times are mystifying. But it is actually easy to understand once you see the movie and sleep on it.

Joker – a horrible yet great movie – is premised on an underlying tale of disregard for a humane interpretation of the values of empathy and social justice.

But the SJW Left can’t handle it because the vehicle for the morality play is a hated “other” — an isolated white male who cracks violently — and also a hated reality check that there is no redemption or return from certain forms of mental illness once a point of no return is passed.

‘Joker’ Is Incomplete Without Batman

 

“What would I do without you?” The Joker asks Batman in The Dark Knight. “You complete me.” He’s right in more ways than he realizes, as the newly released Joker shows: the Joker, by his very nature, needs Batman, and, more importantly, so does the audience. Because without the Dark Knight there to serve as a ballast, the Joker’s anarchic, twisted, disturbing nature, and Joker itself, becomes unbearably difficult to watch.

Admittedly, in terms of film qua film, Joker succeeds in what it sets out to do. It’s well directed, Joaquin Phoenix turns in an incredible performance as the titular character, and the story provides creepy insight into the psyche of its psychopathic subject. And in fairness, Phoenix’s Joker is not necessarily more evil than past incarnations of the character. Heath Ledger’s turn as the Clown Prince of Crime, for example, was just as twisted, just as nihilistic. Also, Batman: The Killing Joke featured a Joker committing acts just as depraved and horrific. These Jokers, however, did not exist in a vacuum, and the stories in which they’re present also feature counters to their dangerous ideology.

Joker, in comparison, is devoid of any sort of moral challenge to its villain. Watching someone engage in truly despicable, grotesque evil on screen without anyone rising to challenge it, without any sense of hope for viewers is a truly painful experience, one that unsettled me so deeply I had to turn away from the screen on several occasions and nearly walked out at one point—and I managed to sit through the entirety of The Shape of Water, so that’s saying something. With scenes of murder that are realistically graphic and intense, it feels almost as if you’re watching artfully shot found footage of homicides. While it is unfair to say that Joker celebrates its protagonist, or even that it portrays him in a sympathetic light, the movie makes no argument against him, relying solely on the audience to pass judgement on the character.