Joker Director: Todd Phillips
Writer: Todd Phillips, Scott Silver
Cast: Joaquin Phoenix, Robert De Niro, Zazie Beetz, Frances Conroy
Distributor: Warner Bros.
Rated R | Minutes: 122
Release Date: October 4, 2019
One of the worse things that a writer and director can do in a comic book film adaptation is misinterpret the source material. It is one thing to re-envision it in order to suit a vision of the story that you want to tell, but it is something else when you go far off the edge just to prove you can be the bleakest of the lot. That is what Todd Phillip‘s Joker does. Using Gotham City as a canvas, the film is painted with the colors of Martin Scorsese inspiration and the complexities of heavy themes of mental illness and social inequality, with a slight touch of DC, all of which makes Joker a dark, depressing, and gritty hardboiled crime drama that also happens to be the origins story for the clown prince of crime. The story delves into the mind of the lonely title character, played brilliantly by Joaquin Phoenix, who has been dumped on by society. But as fascinating as the lead performance is, everything else about it lacks complexities and nuance, and only further stigmatizes those who do suffer from mental illness.
Some things aren’t just meant to be. Despite making the jump from Marvel Studios to DCEU, it looks like Joss Whedon‘s vision for Batgirl won’t come true. It’s been confirmed that the Justice League director has exited the project, leaving Batgirl without a director. More on the story below.