Joker review: Joaquin Phoenix and director Todd Phillips have delivered a brutal masterpiece – The Sun

BELIEVE the hype. Todd Phillips and Joaquin Phoenix have delivered a masterpiece.

A sad, brutal, graphic, politically charged, unpalatable yet funny masterpiece.

If you’re expecting anything near to a Joker you’ve seen before, you’d better brace yourselves – and certainly do not take the kids.

It’s 1981 in Gotham City and Arthur Fleck is a failed clown and comedian suffering from serious mental illness.

The City is polarising in class and wealth and Fleck cannot find anyone to help him. The social system has collapsed – his medication halts and his ailing mother merely fans the flames.

As resentment among the citizens builds by the day, a chain of tragic and violent events unfurl and Arthur’s descent towards his alter-ego, is inevitable – offering people their martyr and champion.

Joaquin Phoenix’s take on the clown is like nothing you’ve seen before – where other’s have hinted at darkness behind the mask, he plays it like a possessed Marcel Marceau – you simply cannot take your eyes off him – it is a flawless, physical, terrifying performance.

I initially scoffed at the question regarding this film encouraging violence, but having seen it – I do get it.

It is terrifyingly bloody and uncomfortably real – but rather than worry whether this will encourage copycat Jokers (a ridiculous notion) we should worry more that we already live in this supposed fictional environment that could create him at the drop of a hat.

See this film immediately.

Joker (15) 103mins


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