The Joker Gen Z


Rylie Pleau


The Joker, directed by Todd Phillips and starring Joaqin Phoenix, was a remarkable movie. Not only did this movie interest me from the very beginning, it kept me interested the entire time. The Joker is about a mentally ill man as he slowly morphs into this merciless killer that walks the streets of Gotham City as a seemingly normal man. Joaquin Phoenix, who plays the lead role, is an incredible actor, the type that makes you feel exactly what his character is feeling.  Arthur Fleck is a man who doesn’t have anything in life but his mental illnesses and psychotic laughter. Though Arthur Fleck is a gruesome murderer, you can’t help but feel bad for him. The man had always been an outcast who struggled to make money and friends. 


The feel of this movie would not have been as real without Joaquin Phoenix. The online article “The strange ways Joaquin Phoenix prepared to play The Joker” explained that the actor had intentionally lost a dramatic amount of weight for the role of Arthur Fleck. He also would run down the streets wearing full clown makeup and his iconic burgundy suit, even pouncing onto vehicles to prepare for the stunts in the movie. Even though his acting preparations might be extreme, Joaquin Phoenix knew exactly what he needed to do in order to do the incredible job he did with this role. Mental illnesses are very difficult to understand and empathize with, but somehow he made it easy for us to relate. Arthur Fleck was a man who had intense negative feelings and struggles that he had to deal with everyday. The character’s heavy and dark feelings were so different than anything I had seen before. I can’t say that any actor before Joaquin Phoenix had truthfully make me feel pity for a murderer. 


I’m not usually the type of person to go out of my way to see a villain/superhero movie, but with The Joker, I did. I’m only fifteen, and this movie is rated R, therefore I had to drag my stepdad to the movie theater. This Joker movie was not the first, so hearing about ANOTHER Joker movie didn’t sound like anything special. I was terribly wrong about that. This wasn’t like the other villain/superhero movies–it gave more of an emotional backstory for the viewers to connect to.