"The child who is not embraced by the village will burn it down to feel its warmth." - African proverb
As a DC comic fan, I had my reservations before catching 'Joker'. I mean, sure, Nicholson and Ledger gave truly scary, widely acclaimed turns as the greatest supervillain in fiction. But they were still not comic book Joker. I loved comic book Joker.
Then I watched Phoenix's performance in the very opening act of 'Joker', and sat up. I watched, and watched, and watched. I couldn't stop watching. By the time Phoenix's physically gaunt, psychologically tormented Arthur Fleck fully accepted his identity as the Clown Prince of Crime on top of some rain soaked steps in the heart of Gotham, I was invested in this Joker.
Then - in THE iconic moment of any comic book villain on screen - Phoenix eased into a triumphant slow dance, with the sort of uncultivated finesse and dreamy escapism that was chilling, realistic, and yet, truly beautiful.
Then, I knew this was it. Phoenix had pretty much ripped comic book Joker out of the pages and into our world, with an entertaining and unnerving turn that was haunting in its realism and humanity.
Dare I say, this origin story is on a level on par with 'The Killing Joke', taking "one bad day" and turning it into one bad life.
Phoenix IS the new gold standard of the Joker, with probably the single greatest performance we have seen in a comic book based film. How much I would love to see this Joker go up against Batman, in a reboot of the 1989 classic. WOW. WOW. WOW.
Please watch it, and let me know what you thought of the movie. (also, how awesome is this promo display?) #datenight #joker #batman #dccomics #dadlife #pilotlife