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Thread: Joker (2019)

  1. - Top - End - #181
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    Quote Originally Posted by Tvtyrant View Post
    I would argue that villains in superhero stories still fulfill a lot of the same rolls though. They are fighting the status quo and attempting to seize power, superheroes defend it (often protecting really awful blue bloods.) The Long Halloween is about the collapse of the blue blood mafia against villains, and the delineation between them is the mafia has all the trappings of aristocracy and the villains are crazed, poor and grasping.
    But that's not all villains. As you mentioned, Lex Luthor is a billionaire. He's nothing like a peasant, up to and including trying to take over the world with his money. It's just a point of general pedantry and while you can find poor villains looking to overthrow the establishment...that's not really a peasant thing either. They're, mostly, not farmers nor are the vast majority in a feudal system or even a psuedo-feudal system. It's a reach from start to finish.

  2. - Top - End - #182
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    Quote Originally Posted by Razade View Post
    But that's not all villains. As you mentioned, Lex Luthor is a billionaire. He's nothing like a peasant, up to and including trying to take over the world with his money. It's just a point of general pedantry and while you can find poor villains looking to overthrow the establishment...that's not really a peasant thing either. They're, mostly, not farmers nor are the vast majority in a feudal system or even a psuedo-feudal system. It's a reach from start to finish.
    Actually many villains fulfill the Etymology of their name by being "of lower status" than the hero.

    Lex Luthor is a human. Supposedly having no superpowers (he would win the Olympics, the Chess championships, but still). Superman is like a noble in a fairy tale: better than ordinary people in every way and obviously more deserving of the princess.

    Most villains are misfits, have something wrong with them, and don't fit our values for what make people superior. The hero is superior even if today that doesn't necessarily mean being of noble birth.

    In fact heroes are more likely to be born for their special, chosen role. Superman fits well.
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  3. - Top - End - #183
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    Default Re: Joker (2019)

    This is an excellent film. I wouldn't say I enjoyed it, because it's not that kind of film. But I was certainly fascinated watching it.

    However...


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    I just don't see how Arthur Fleck is going to function as The Joker, as we think of him. He's not charismatic, he is never indicated to be above average intelligence, his only skillset is to literally be a clown, his murders are quite simple, and his big climax is to murder someone on live air. Overall he's just a fairly realistic spree killer. I can see him functioning as a sort of mascot/idol for Gotham's underclass rage, but that's it.

    This story works are a horrifying, realistic psychothriller, but I don't feel it fits well within the Batman mythos.
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  4. - Top - End - #184
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    I miss fun and/or hilarious Jokers.
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  5. - Top - End - #185
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    Quote Originally Posted by Jeivar View Post
    This is an excellent film. I wouldn't say I enjoyed it, because it's not that kind of film.
    Uhhhh...? I enjoyed it, because it's totally that kind of film. Hell, I loved it. I like character studies.
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  6. - Top - End - #186
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    Quote Originally Posted by Peelee View Post
    Uhhhh...? I enjoyed it, because it's totally that kind of film. Hell, I loved it. I like character studies.
    I mean it isn't FUN. It's a depressing, cringy film about terrible things happening.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Jeivar View Post
    I mean it isn't FUN. It's a depressing, cringy film about terrible things happening.
    I don't know if I'd call it cringy. Then again, I have no problem watching Scotts Tots, Dinner Party, or any other Office episode people say they skip, so I may just enjoy stuff like that for what it is.

    Also wouldn't call it depressing, but that's just me.
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  8. - Top - End - #188
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    Quote Originally Posted by Jeivar View Post
    This is an excellent film. I wouldn't say I enjoyed it, because it's not that kind of film. But I was certainly fascinated watching it.

    However...


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    I just don't see how Arthur Fleck is going to function as The Joker, as we think of him. He's not charismatic, he is never indicated to be above average intelligence, his only skillset is to literally be a clown, his murders are quite simple, and his big climax is to murder someone on live air. Overall he's just a fairly realistic spree killer. I can see him functioning as a sort of mascot/idol for Gotham's underclass rage, but that's it.

    This story works are a horrifying, realistic psychothriller, but I don't feel it fits well within the Batman mythos.
    He's not going to function as the Joker. This was a standalone film.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Devonix View Post
    He's not going to function as the Joker. This was a standalone film.
    I know they aren't going to do a sequel, but we are supposed to imagine one. Since clearly little Bruce is going to become Batman.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Peelee View Post
    I don't know if I'd call it cringy. Then again, I have no problem watching Scotts Tots, Dinner Party, or any other Office episode people say they skip, so I may just enjoy stuff like that for what it is.

    Also wouldn't call it depressing, but that's just me.
    I've never been able to watch The Office (UK version, I've never tried the US version since I didn't like the UK version), because I simply don't find cringe comedy funny.

    There's definitely some cringe inducing moments in Joker.

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    His mother asking "Don't you have to be funny to be a comedian?" is downright painful. There's also the scene on the bus with him and the little girl, and him bombing at the comedy club.
    The casual prejudice towards little people that we see from the clown company. Those are the big ones that immediately spring to mind.


    The difference is that those moments aren't meant to be funny. I can deal with cringey stuff when it's treated seriously.

    As to whether it's a fun watch? That's a tough one.

    It's a dark tale, and it's definitely depressing. It's a couple hours of people being really crappy to one another.

    At the same time though, I didn't find it actively painful to watch. I don't know that I could ever watch A Silent Voice again, even though I would recommend it as an excellent movie. That's a film that I wouldn't describe as a fun watch, and I think the Joker still is. There's a twisted vein of humor at the heart of the film, a sort of laughing at the cruelty of the world. That keeps it from being too dark, in my opinion.

  11. - Top - End - #191
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    Quote Originally Posted by Rodin View Post
    I've never been able to watch The Office (UK version, I've never tried the US version since I didn't like the UK version), because I simply don't find cringe comedy funny.

    There's definitely some cringe inducing moments in Joker.

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    His mother asking "Don't you have to be funny to be a comedian?" is downright painful. There's also the scene on the bus with him and the little girl, and him bombing at the comedy club.
    The casual prejudice towards little people that we see from the clown company. Those are the big ones that immediately spring to mind.


    The difference is that those moments aren't meant to be funny. I can deal with cringey stuff when it's treated seriously.

    As to whether it's a fun watch? That's a tough one.

    It's a dark tale, and it's definitely depressing. It's a couple hours of people being really crappy to one another.

    At the same time though, I didn't find it actively painful to watch. I don't know that I could ever watch A Silent Voice again, even though I would recommend it as an excellent movie. That's a film that I wouldn't describe as a fun watch, and I think the Joker still is. There's a twisted vein of humor at the heart of the film, a sort of laughing at the cruelty of the world. That keeps it from being too dark, in my opinion.
    UK Office was great, but I think you'd like the US Office; it's radically different and has a lot less cringe humor. If you skip the first season I think you'd enjoy the vast majority of it.

    Anyway...
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    His mother asking "aren't comedians supposed to be funny" was absolutely hilarious. So was him dying on stage. it's dark humor, but it's humor.
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  12. - Top - End - #192
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    I've had a thought:

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    The thought occurs that this character is more significant than his screen time would indicate. He is very nearly the only decent person in the cast, which is exactly why he survives the movie. It's made very clear throughout the film that Arthur doesn't snap due to his mental illness, but due to mistreatment by society. But Gary treated him well, and so Arthur spares him.

    I would say the message is that Gary is the person we should all try to be; showing basic decency to our fellows. Because if Arthur had received that basic decency from more of the people around him he wouldn't have turned into the Joker.

    What do you think?
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  13. - Top - End - #193
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    Quote Originally Posted by Jeivar View Post
    I've had a thought:

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    The thought occurs that this character is more significant than his screen time would indicate. He is very nearly the only decent person in the cast, which is exactly why he survives the movie. It's made very clear throughout the film that Arthur doesn't snap due to his mental illness, but due to mistreatment by society. But Gary treated him well, and so Arthur spares him.

    I would say the message is that Gary is the person we should all try to be; showing basic decency to our fellows. Because if Arthur had received that basic decency from more of the people around him he wouldn't have turned into the Joker.

    What do you think?
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    In my opinion, he's not developed enough for that to be a message from the movie itself. He appeared what, 3 times, barely affected the scenes he was in, and wasn't particularly kind in those moments. I also don't see the film as being that...on the nose.

    My view was that that scene is entirely Arthur's delusion. The delusion of social acceptance, transmuted to the delusion of being in a place of judgement. Arthur wants to see himself as the kind of person sending the message you're discussing.

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    Quote Originally Posted by uncool View Post
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    My view was that that scene is entirely Arthur's delusion. The delusion of social acceptance, transmuted to the delusion of being in a place of judgement. Arthur wants to see himself as the kind of person sending the message you're discussing.
    I think it totally played out like we see. When his meds start to wear off and he wakes himself up from his girlfriend delusion, when he stops feeling like he doesn't exist and starts to accept that he's the way he is and enjoying it, I think the delusions are over. He doesn't need the escapism of inventing a life in his head, for the first time he feels he is who he wants to be.
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    Default Re: Joker (2019)

    What if
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    Gary and the other guy who loaned him that gun don't exist either?
    He wasn't loaned a gun, it was Arthur's gun after all.
    I mean, Arthur is crazy...
    So, he just imagine he murdered that jerk and let Gary go unharmed.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Starbuck_II View Post
    What if
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    Gary and the other guy who loaned him that gun don't exist either?
    He wasn't loaned a gun, it was Arthur's gun after all.
    I mean, Arthur is crazy...
    So, he just imagine he murdered that jerk and let Gary go unharmed.
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    That...doesn't really fit, in either a Watsonian or Doylist sense. Among other things:
    Watsonian: Arthur's coworkers pretty clearly interact with Randall and Gary. Arthur tells the boss that Gary called him in, so either the boss is a delusion (which leads to a bigger set of problems) or the boss just accepts Arthur talking about a nonexistent Gary. The coworkers commiserate with Arthur at Randall's prompting. And so on.

    Doylist: Arthur's delusions come from the things he wants. He wants a father and to be important - so he has a delusion of a situation where he gains a famous father figure. He wants both a girlfriend and someone who (unlike his mother) supports his creative hobby - so he has a delusion of a girlfriend that thinks his standup is funny. Also, his delusions aren't of dreamt-up people - it's of real people, just doing things in the way he wants.

    Additionally, that way lies the idea that the entire movie is Arthur's delusion. Which...kinda ruins the movie, unless played off in the "multiple choice origin story" way.
    Last edited by uncool; 2019-10-13 at 12:16 AM.

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    Quote Originally Posted by uncool View Post
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    That...doesn't really fit, in either a Watsonian or Doylist sense. Among other things:
    Watsonian: Arthur's coworkers pretty clearly interact with Randall and Gary. Arthur tells the boss that Gary called him in, so either the boss is a delusion (which leads to a bigger set of problems) or the boss just accepts Arthur talking about a nonexistent Gary. The coworkers commiserate with Arthur at Randall's prompting. And so on.

    Doylist: Arthur's delusions come from the things he wants. He wants a father and to be important - so he has a delusion of a situation where he gains a famous father figure. He wants both a girlfriend and someone who (unlike his mother) supports his creative hobby - so he has a delusion of a girlfriend that thinks his standup is funny. Also, his delusions aren't of dreamt-up people - it's of real people, just doing things in the way he wants.

    Additionally, that way lies the idea that the entire movie is Arthur's delusion. Which...kinda ruins the movie, unless played off in the "multiple choice origin story" way.
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    I actually like the idea that the whole movie is a delusion. It fits what we see. The whole city coming to revere him (before he does anything public) is a lot easier to swallow if it's his delusion. The way he casually slips past the police barricade at the movie theatre, and then Thomas Wayne doesn't have him arrested. Getting to go on the MurrAY Show with no pre-screening, nobody checks him for a gun, being allowed to go on in full clown make-up...plus the whole thing was being aired live, which I don't think would have been still happening in the 1980s. My research failed me on this particular point however.

    The movie has a very dreamlike quality throughout. He walks away from the detectives mid-conversation and they don't follow him inside. He kills Randall and Gary doesn't appear to call the police on him. His "girlfriend" doesn't call the police, and we never see her again after that scene. The cops don't come after him for stealing his mother's paperwork from the insane asylum either.

    It's all told as a series of "scenes" that fit the way you would come up with something in a fantasy without the inconveniences of the real world to intrude.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Rodin View Post
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    I actually like the idea that the whole movie is a delusion. It fits what we see. The whole city coming to revere him (before he does anything public) is a lot easier to swallow if it's his delusion. The way he casually slips past the police barricade at the movie theatre, and then Thomas Wayne doesn't have him arrested. Getting to go on the MurrAY Show with no pre-screening, nobody checks him for a gun, being allowed to go on in full clown make-up...plus the whole thing was being aired live, which I don't think would have been still happening in the 1980s. My research failed me on this particular point however.

    The movie has a very dreamlike quality throughout. He walks away from the detectives mid-conversation and they don't follow him inside. He kills Randall and Gary doesn't appear to call the police on him. His "girlfriend" doesn't call the police, and we never see her again after that scene. The cops don't come after him for stealing his mother's paperwork from the insane asylum either.

    It's all told as a series of "scenes" that fit the way you would come up with something in a fantasy without the inconveniences of the real world to intrude.
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    He doesnt have the whole city revere him, though, he has a very vocal plurality.

    As for the security being lacking... I'm taking a shot in the dark here, but are you old enough to remember 20th century protocols? Things were very, very different.
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  19. - Top - End - #199
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    Quote Originally Posted by Rodin View Post
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    I actually like the idea that the whole movie is a delusion. It fits what we see. The whole city coming to revere him (before he does anything public) is a lot easier to swallow if it's his delusion. The way he casually slips past the police barricade at the movie theatre, and then Thomas Wayne doesn't have him arrested. Getting to go on the MurrAY Show with no pre-screening, nobody checks him for a gun, being allowed to go on in full clown make-up...plus the whole thing was being aired live, which I don't think would have been still happening in the 1980s. My research failed me on this particular point however.

    The movie has a very dreamlike quality throughout. He walks away from the detectives mid-conversation and they don't follow him inside. He kills Randall and Gary doesn't appear to call the police on him. His "girlfriend" doesn't call the police, and we never see her again after that scene. The cops don't come after him for stealing his mother's paperwork from the insane asylum either.

    It's all told as a series of "scenes" that fit the way you would come up with something in a fantasy without the inconveniences of the real world to intrude.
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    It makes sense, I agree - the cut after "don't you have to be funny?" fits similarly - but it runs into the same problem any "And it was all a dream" explanations do: why should we care?

    Certain scenes being delusions give meaning to non-delusion scenes, and can have meaning given to them by what is happening in the real world. When "it's all a delusion", we have no reference to the real world, and no reason to care. Which is why it can work with the multiple-choice origin story - we do have a "real world" reference in the Joker himself, and care because we want to know about him and especially what he's trying to say to everyone else. But a simple "This character dreamed this delusion" just...doesn't matter.

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    Quote Originally Posted by uncool View Post
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    That...doesn't really fit, in either a Watsonian or Doylist sense. Among other things:
    Watsonian: Arthur's coworkers pretty clearly interact with Randall and Gary. Arthur tells the boss that Gary called him in, so either the boss is a delusion (which leads to a bigger set of problems) or the boss just accepts Arthur talking about a nonexistent Gary. The coworkers commiserate with Arthur at Randall's prompting. And so on.

    Doylist: Arthur's delusions come from the things he wants. He wants a father and to be important - so he has a delusion of a situation where he gains a famous father figure. He wants both a girlfriend and someone who (unlike his mother) supports his creative hobby - so he has a delusion of a girlfriend that thinks his standup is funny. Also, his delusions aren't of dreamt-up people - it's of real people, just doing things in the way he wants.

    Additionally, that way lies the idea that the entire movie is Arthur's delusion. Which...kinda ruins the movie, unless played off in the "multiple choice origin story" way.
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    Hmm: If Gary doesn't exist...
    Boss talkin' to someone about Arthur taking to a non existent Gary:
    Yeah, dude may be mental, but he works hard so we overlook him being a looney plus Govt pays us to employ crazy people.

    Or
    Boss isn't real:
    Arthur doesn't actually have a job...
    He just picked up a block of wood pretending to advertise? Puts on clown make up just because.
    Was he really beaten up... or was that delusion too?

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    Quote Originally Posted by Peelee View Post
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    He doesnt have the whole city revere him, though, he has a very vocal plurality.

    As for the security being lacking... I'm taking a shot in the dark here, but are you old enough to remember 20th century protocols? Things were very, very different.
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    I grew up in the 80s, so yeah. It is easy to forget just how much lower the security used to be. I'm still a bit shocked that somewhere as prestigious as the Johnny Carson equivalent wouldn't have serious security, especially in a place as crappy as 1980s Gotham/New York. I'm more bugged by the movie theatre, because that wasn't a normal situation - there was a protest that was one thrown rock away from being a full-blown riot, and the security on a building full of millionaires and billionaires would surely have been much tighter.

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    Security in normal circumstances is one thing, but in a climate where there's large scale protests triggered by murders, and the protesters dress as clowns...

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    The only thing I have to contribute is Gary obviously called the police, how do you think they showed up right as he was leaving?

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    Quote Originally Posted by Kornaki View Post
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    The only thing I have to contribute is Gary obviously called the police, how do you think they showed up right as he was leaving?
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    I thought about that too, and I disagree. If they found him in response to Gary calling them, telling them Arthur just impulsively and very violently murdering a coworker, you'd expect them to approach him cautiously and not give him a chance to run. You'd expect more than just the same two cops showing up again. It looks like them just showing up again, like they did at the hospital.

    It's a natural assumption to connect Gary with the cops showing up, but I don't think the connection is that sound.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Kyberwulf View Post
    So, given that he is the reason for Bruce's parents death. Do you think that, that would fundamentally change Batman's outlook? I mean originally, it was a random guy in a random crime, that set Batman off. With this though, what do you think?
    Did it change the Keaton Batman's outlook? Admittedly in Tim Burton's film Joe Chill and the Joker being one and the same man isn't revealed until around the end of Act 2, and it certainly prompts Batman to go with beating the absolute snot out of the Joker, but the character certainly doesn't seem to change.

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    I was thinking about the scene on the train, and I wonder if Joker didn't deliberately get them to attack him. Later he says he doesn't have a condition at all, that he laughs at things he finds funny.

    He starts laughing when they are accosting the woman, and keeps doing it until he shoots them. Then he goes silent and does the dance.
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  27. - Top - End - #207
    Dragon in the Playground Moderator
     
    Peelee's Avatar

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    Default Re: Joker (2019)

    Quote Originally Posted by Saintheart View Post
    Did it change the Keaton Batman's outlook? Admittedly in Tim Burton's film Joe Chill and the Joker being one and the same man isn't revealed until around the end of Act 2, and it certainly prompts Batman to go with beating the absolute snot out of the Joker, but the character certainly doesn't seem to change.
    I'd argue it did:

    Quote Originally Posted by Batman, according to Tim Burton
    I'm going to kill you.

    *kills him*
    That's... a pretty big departure for Batman.
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  28. - Top - End - #208
    Barbarian in the Playground
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    Default Re: Joker (2019)

    I feel like I don't need to see the movie because I just watched this.

  29. - Top - End - #209
    Bugbear in the Playground
     
    RogueGuy

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    Default Re: Joker (2019)

    Why does it seem like everyone says that about characters in their origin movies.

    He isn't this.. he isn't that.. lol

    Kind of like Man of Steel.

    Of course Joker isn't Charismatic yet. At the end of the movie is when he starts to be more of who is to become. You can see that in a lot of the people around him. I think goes a long way into showing you who he is going to be.

  30. - Top - End - #210
    Bugbear in the Playground
     
    Planetar

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    Default Re: Joker (2019)

    I have no interest in seeing this movie. Batman, Joker and all of Gotham has been done to death.

    I'm also not a fan of the character at all. I've always thought that Joker is a pretty lame villain when you think about it. He's a psycho who kills people for no reason. Usually, those are called one-dimensional villains. Sure, I've heard that in this movie they changed that and gave him reasons but all of that still doesn't sound like a lot of fun.

    Right now, when it comes to DC and their movies, I'm more interested in seeing Aquaman for the second time.

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    In Aquaman, he beats up the bad guys. Like it should be in a comic book movie.
    Signatures are so 90's.

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