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The Joker

13 Jan 2020 15:19 #66397 by lfan
The Joker was created by lfan
Nominated for 11 Oscars including best director, picture, and actor:

www.cbr.com/joker-todd-phillips-joaquin-...1-oscar-nominations/

It seemed "people loved it" even before it came out (which is the opposite of what happened with Captain Marvel).  I thought the pace to be excruciatingly slow and not in a "good excruciatingly slow" like Fargo.  Everything else about the plot was.....eh......

I know I'm in the minority, but I don't get all the accolades.  I thought Ledger's Joker was FAR better and interesting -- and I'm ready to fight anyone that thinks otherwise!  :P
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13 Jan 2020 15:56 #66398 by Revan
Replied by Revan on topic The Joker
Ledger's Joker over Phoenix' for sure!

I liked the movie although imo it has nothing to do with the Joker other than the title and a kid named Bruce Wayne. 

It's an interesting take on how modern society can unhinge a troubled mind but certainly not as amazing as the hype makes it out to be. 
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13 Jan 2020 16:42 #66400 by kikass2014
Replied by kikass2014 on topic The Joker
The film itself is average at best imo, a retelling of Taxi Driver in a way.

The cinematography is excellent, though I do agree, the pacing isn't.

But Phoenix's performance is outstanding, so much so that it elevates the material.

To me, thats the only good thing about it, his performance.

And I agree, the film doesn't really have anything to do with the "Joker", and would have worked just as well (if not better), had that angle been taken out.

Peace.

/K

P.S.  Ledger's performance was excellent, in that he was "The Joker".  That isn't to take anything away from Phoenix's performance though.

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13 Jan 2020 17:56 - 13 Jan 2020 17:59 #66401 by shadar
Replied by shadar on topic The Joker
I was listening to an interview the other day on NPR's Fresh Air with the creative team on Joker, and they were very upfront that they used "Joker" and the current superhero/comics craze to get funded and develop a potential audience, but they were always intending to tell a story about mental illness that was unrelated to any comic book history. 

They claimed they never could have gotten their original ideas funded, so they hitched a ride on the current wave of popularity and then went and told the story they'd originally intended to tell, with some Joker cosmetics. 

Cool that they were upfront about it. They had an interesting story to tell, which is why the movie has gotten praise, thanks to some great acting as well.

Not so cool that they hijacked a popular genre to do it. Some people actually expected to see a movie set in the canonical world of Batman and Joker.

I guess we shouldn't be too surprised. The Supergirl TV show (at least after Season 1) was mostly a vehicle for using SG as a mechanism for telling stories that ultimately had nothing to do with Supergirl. Toss in a few scenes each week of her in costume doing stuff to keep fueling the scam. 

I'm sure we'll see more of this... it doesn't really bother me as long as I know what to expect. And we will always have Season 1 of Supergirl, which really was a show about a beloved comic book character, albeit with strange writing. 

Shadar
Last edit: 13 Jan 2020 17:59 by shadar.
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13 Jan 2020 19:12 #66403 by lfan
Replied by lfan on topic The Joker
Valid point, Shadar!

It had some comic book overtones to it (Gotham, Wayne family) but I personally didn't think it was "average" because of the "bait and switch" of framing it as a comic book movie. 

If it was supposed to be a vehicle for mental illness, so be it.  TBH, I didn't think it was THAT good of a movie about mental illness.  It wasn't unique in that it explored mental illness.  I can think of several movies off the top of my head that were better 'mental illness movies':

Silver Linings Playbook, One Flew Over the Cuckoo Nest, Girl Interrupted

OK, these aren't as dark as Joker, but Joker wasn't groundbreaking on that front either -- Black Swan, American Psycho, Psycho.

I'm not saying it HAD to be an original idea -- I'm of the belief there is maybe 1-2 "original ideas" in movies per year, and that is ok.

I'm just saying it WASN'T an original idea and listening to the critic fawn over it almost like groundbreaking cinema is a little bizarre to me. 

Again I thought it was a good movie, but 11 Oscar nominations?  That's rarified air that should only be reserved for cinematic masterpieces like Casablanca, Snakes on a Plane, or Breakin' 2:  Electric Boogaloo.  :P




shadar wrote: I was listening to an interview the other day on NPR's Fresh Air with the creative team on Joker, and they were very upfront that they used "Joker" and the current superhero/comics craze to get funded and develop a potential audience, but they were always intending to tell a story about mental illness that was unrelated to any comic book history. 

They claimed they never could have gotten their original ideas funded, so they hitched a ride on the current wave of popularity and then went and told the story they'd originally intended to tell, with some Joker cosmetics. 

Cool that they were upfront about it. They had an interesting story to tell, which is why the movie has gotten praise, thanks to some great acting as well.

Not so cool that they hijacked a popular genre to do it. Some people actually expected to see a movie set in the canonical world of Batman and Joker.

I guess we shouldn't be too surprised. The Supergirl TV show (at least after Season 1) was mostly a vehicle for using SG as a mechanism for telling stories that ultimately had nothing to do with Supergirl. Toss in a few scenes each week of her in costume doing stuff to keep fueling the scam. 

I'm sure we'll see more of this... it doesn't really bother me as long as I know what to expect. And we will always have Season 1 of Supergirl, which really was a show about a beloved comic book character, albeit with strange writing. 

Shadar

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13 Jan 2020 20:09 #66404 by kikass2014
Replied by kikass2014 on topic The Joker
Exactly what Shadar said.  It was a film about a mans breakdown, fueled by the environment he is in.

I never realized that the film makers actually came out and admitted that about the funding.  Kudos to them for doing that tbh.  I always thought it was a separate film, just re-purposed by WB to add to their DCEU.

If it was supposed to be a vehicle for mental illness, so be it.  TBH, I didn't think it was THAT good of a movie about mental illness.  It wasn't unique in that it explored mental illness.  I can think of several movies off the top of my head that were better 'mental illness movies':

Silver Linings Playbook, One Flew Over the Cuckoo Nest, Girl Interrupted

OK, these aren't as dark as Joker, but Joker wasn't groundbreaking on that front either -- Black Swan, American Psycho, Psycho.


Totally agree.  Those films are all better at dealing with the subject matter, and great films as well.

...and listening to the critic fawn over it almost like groundbreaking cinema is a little bizarre to me.


Critics were NOT fawning over it when it came out.  Once it made a billion dollars plus, and people loved it, then they seem to have changed their minds. 

It was lambasted by the access media, with them spewing stuff like "it will spur people to violence"  and that "cinemas will need additional security"  blah blah blah.   Or "there will be killings" touting that story about that one incident where a man "dressed like the Joker", killed some people in a cinema.  He wasn't dressed like the Joker btw, but oh well.  Ofc, none of this came to pass, and now no one seems to mention that hoopla.

I still maintain the film simply rides on Phoenix's performance, and tbh, though its nominated, I don't think it will take home hardly any of those oscars.  The only one, as mentioned, being Best Actor. Imo.

Peace.

/K

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13 Jan 2020 21:37 - 13 Jan 2020 21:37 #66407 by Whatever
Replied by Whatever on topic The Joker
Joker, in my humble opinion, is most likely just a story he tells in Arkham. We see him locked in Arkham near the start, where it looks a) completely different to when he visits and b) exactly like at the end. We never get an explanation as to why or how he was let out, even as he clearly has issues.
This also accounts for the numerous inconsistencies and plot holes, as well as the frankly ridicoulous behaviour of some people (such as the kids stealing nothing but his sign, Alfred being weirdly inept and an ass, the general public immediately accepting Joker as their hero- basically, eloquent narcissism).

If I'm correct, this also means they stuck with Joker's characterization very closely- it's basically as it is in stories like mad love, where he mixes comedic elements with an attempt to gain sympathy from his psychologists. Might even be the case he quotes King of Comedy and Taxi Driver as a Joke, the punchline being his charisma as the nail in the Wayne's coffin. 
Last edit: 13 Jan 2020 21:37 by Whatever.

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14 Jan 2020 02:48 - 14 Jan 2020 03:08 #66418 by Markiehoe
Replied by Markiehoe on topic The Joker


Critics were NOT fawning over it when it came out.  Once it made a billion dollars plus, and people loved it, then they seem to have changed their minds. 


TRUE!
I remember the movie being blasted for it's "Toxic Masculinity" and there were actual fears of violence at showings of the movie.
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14 Jan 2020 06:07 #66421 by Furlough
Replied by Furlough on topic The Joker
I'm definitely in the camp that immensely enjoyed the new Joker film, and I think a big part of that has to do with me being a fan stories like it that prominently feature ambiguity in storytelling, giving its audience agency of interpretation without setting anything in stone. Ambiguity is present all throughout; since Arthur's interactions with one particular character are eventually shown to have been a fabrication an audience member is free to extend that indefinitely and question whether anything in the overall plot truly happened. As was  already mentioned, if you're really adamant about wanting to adhere to the comic books in some way, you could just say that the entire thing was a made-up story cooked up by Joker in Arkham Asylum, in line with his "multiple choice past" quip from Killing Joke (which nonetheless doesn't mean this particular interpretation doesn't borrow numerous concrete elements from the comics). But quite frankly I see comic book 'canon', especially in huge legacy franchises like Batman, to be a shaky and tenuous notion at best due to the sheer myriad of different writers that have contributed to it over the decades. Same applies to other media like certain long-running TV shows and franchises; there's been so many different voices that at some point you just gotta accept that anything is possible and no one person's word or take is better than the other's (unless the whole franchise is originally based on a considerable volume of work by a single person or a tightly controlled group).

I'm also of the (I suppose unpopular) opinion that Heath Ledger's Joker is and was more than a little overhyped. I can definitely see why so many people like him so much, but I just wasn't nearly as much a fan of his edgy anarchist aesthetic nor the absurd complexity and effectiveness of his plans, even if both of these things were ostensibly more fitting for the Nolanverse interpretation of Batman. Even if you chalk up the second of those things to be made possible by his incredible cunning and ability to manipulate things inconspicuously while blending in plain sight when he chooses, that can also be seen in the new Joker film in what I consider to be a far more credible scale in moments such as when he infiltrates the theater to talk to Thomas Wayne and when he shakes the cops pursuing him late in the film. I (like everyone else) can only speak for myself, but I found Joaquín's Joker more memorable than Ledger's for its own reasons.

And honestly, Joker was the only film that really made me want to go see it in the theater in 2019. Not surprised at all that it's sweeping the award shows when you consider the relative competition. The mainstream media outcry was pretty ridiculous too— I hardly believe this is the place to get too political, but so many recent films and pieces of mainstream media have all been about virtue signaling and espousing specific beliefs, it's like media outlets wanted there to be a mass shooting related to Joker just so they could all put out sensationalist pieces slamming it for not conforming to that trend. I heard that many places in the US put a bunch of extra armed security in theaters when the movie was coming out, and much to no one's surprise nothing happened. No such visible increase in security happened in my country at the film's release, and much to no one's surprise absolutely nothing happened. I guess some people could argue that some paranoia was warranted after the Dark Knight Rises shooting incident, but I'm pretty certain it's never been proven that incident had anything to do with the content of the film itself.. The media's callous, predatory attitude towards the recent film has been nothing short of ridiculous, like a bad joke that no one could laugh at...

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14 Jan 2020 15:57 #66423 by TwiceOnThursdays
Replied by TwiceOnThursdays on topic The Joker
I'm actually a little annoyed that Joker made so much money and is getting so many accolades.

I enjoyed the movie, and agree with a lot said here.

Phoenix's performance and the cinematography are what makes the movie.  The rest was an enjoyable movie that I'd call good.  but it's not great and doesn't deserve all the accolades, which is what I find annoying.  If you told me it got a Best Actor and Best Cinematography nods, I'd think that was totally reasonable.  Best Picture?  WTF is wrong with the Oscars?

I really do enjoy movies with unreliable narrators and shifting reality.  Joker is a movie that you can legitmately ask "did that happen?"  because you have to.  I loved that aspect of the movie.

Also, I don't make much on the incel/violence complaint about the movie.  Almost all of them were from BEFORE the movie was releaseed and by people who I do not think saw the movie.  It seemed mostly to be  people saying things to make talk, rather than honest reviews of the movie.

If you think that after seeing the movie, I have serious questions on how much you were paying attention.  At no point did I think that Joker's actions were things that I should emulate. 

It's good they were honest about their intentions, as the weakest part of this movie is trying to tie to Batman.  If I were a producer, I'd have made them remove the scene where the Waynes get killed including the over-used dropping pearl necklace.  How many times do we need to see that? It also has NOTHING do do with the movie.   I actually started to LAUGH when I saw the Zorro movie listed. At least meeting Thomas Wayne in a bathroom and Bruce Wayner at a gate actually did flow into the movie and work. You'd have kept those scenes if they were some other rich family and not the Waynes.   You would not however, have kept them getting shot in a riot after a movie.

(as an aside, I also detest linking Joker to Batman's Origin.  It's the worst thing about the Keaton Batman movie.)

I also REALLY hope that they do not make another one, or worse, make one w/ Batman in it, or even WORSE tie it the current Batman.  Some things are stronger when they stand on their own.  The movie is made weaker with more explanation that would come with the sequel.

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14 Jan 2020 19:05 #66425 by shadar
Replied by shadar on topic The Joker

TwiceOnThursdays wrote: I'm actually a little annoyed that Joker made so much money and is getting so many accolades.

I enjoyed the movie, and agree with a lot said here.

Phoenix's performance and the cinematography are what makes the movie.  The rest was an enjoyable movie that I'd call good.  but it's not great and doesn't deserve all the accolades, which is what I find annoying.  If you told me it got a Best Actor and Best Cinematography nods, I'd think that was totally reasonable.  Best Picture?  WTF is wrong with the Oscars?

I really do enjoy movies with unreliable narrators and shifting reality.  Joker is a movie that you can legitmately ask "did that happen?"  because you have to.  I loved that aspect of the movie.

Also, I don't make much on the incel/violence complaint about the movie.  Almost all of them were from BEFORE the movie was releaseed and by people who I do not think saw the movie.  It seemed mostly to be  people saying things to make talk, rather than honest reviews of the movie.

If you think that after seeing the movie, I have serious questions on how much you were paying attention.  At no point did I think that Joker's actions were things that I should emulate. 

It's good they were honest about their intentions, as the weakest part of this movie is trying to tie to Batman.  If I were a producer, I'd have made them remove the scene where the Waynes get killed including the over-used dropping pearl necklace.  How many times do we need to see that? It also has NOTHING do do with the movie.   I actually started to LAUGH when I saw the Zorro movie listed. At least meeting Thomas Wayne in a bathroom and Bruce Wayner at a gate actually did flow into the movie and work. You'd have kept those scenes if they were some other rich family and not the Waynes.   You would not however, have kept them getting shot in a riot after a movie.

(as an aside, I also detest linking Joker to Batman's Origin.  It's the worst thing about the Keaton Batman movie.)

I also REALLY hope that they do not make another one, or worse, make one w/ Batman in it, or even WORSE tie it the current Batman.  Some things are stronger when they stand on their own.  The movie is made weaker with more explanation that would come with the sequel.



A further comment based on listening to that interview with the writer and show producers, they were really confused about being somehow enabling or tied to Incels before the movie came out. They said they didn't even know the term and had to look it up and then were completely befuddled how their movie got tagged with that. 

Clearly some people project their own fears, fantasies, passions, paranoia, etc. onto movies before they come out. And some even after. But the Incel thing really puzzled the people who made the movie. 

Agree that the media doesn't do us any favors by hyping the most absurd ideas just to get clicks and social media positioning. Something we have to live through as the Internet morphs the way it has ever since invented. The only thing that's clear is that this will change. With AI driven deep-fakes and now with the emerging tech to inject completely fake people into pictures and video, its all going to turn into complete fantasy with zero credibility. Something everyone will eventually understand. Then we'll see another invention of both the Internet and much of the media to deal with the that. 

I'm still hoping that rapidly emerging tech will allow my fondest wish to come true -- movies and TV shows populated by fake actors who are indistinguishable from real people yet are able to do the most amazing things without expensive and slow-to-develop "special effects", doubles, etc. Imagine what that would do for our genre? 
Shadar

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15 Jan 2020 00:19 #66433 by TwiceOnThursdays
Replied by TwiceOnThursdays on topic The Joker

shadar wrote:
A further comment based on listening to that interview with the writer and show producers, they were really confused about being somehow enabling or tied to Incels before the movie came out. They said they didn't even know the term and had to look it up and then were completely befuddled how their movie got tagged with that. 

Clearly some people project their own fears, fantasies, passions, paranoia, etc. onto movies before they come out. And some even after. But the Incel thing really puzzled the people who made the movie. 

Agree that the media doesn't do us any favors by hyping the most absurd ideas just to get clicks and social media positioning. Something we have to live through as the Internet morphs the way it has ever since invented. The only thing that's clear is that this will change. With AI driven deep-fakes and now with the emerging tech to inject completely fake people into pictures and video, its all going to turn into complete fantasy with zero credibility. Something everyone will eventually understand. Then we'll see another invention of both the Internet and much of the media to deal with the that. 

I'm still hoping that rapidly emerging tech will allow my fondest wish to come true -- movies and TV shows populated by fake actors who are indistinguishable from real people yet are able to do the most amazing things without expensive and slow-to-develop "special effects", doubles, etc. Imagine what that would do for our genre? 
Shadar


I am pretty certain that ALL those comments came from people who had only watched trailers or (even worse) just talked to someone who had watched a trailer.  It was all projection of the worst sort.

I hesitate to say we should squelch fringe people complaining about something -- sometimes it's a fringe properly saying "HEY!  Stop portraying us using ignorant tropes").  But I do think that we should 100% not listen to someone complaining about a piece of art that they have not seen.  (a trailer doesn't count.)  There are some narrow exceptions to that (like complaining about casting in Gods of Egypt).

I think captain marvel is a pretty great example of "If someone hasn't seen the movie, then we should ignore them".   I mean yeah, talk/analyze the trailer but don't accept " the movie sucks because of X in the trailer".  And, if you see pretty consistent widespread complaints before the movie -- likely those same idiots will complain after the movie (they already made up their minds).

So, yeah, ignore them.  And, sadly, if there are too many of them beforehand, well, I just ignore all of them, and I'm sorry if you get lumped into that. ;-)  But my experience in reading people talk about ep 7,8,9 of Star Wars, it seems pretty easy to tell "rabid idiot" from "fan who didn't like the movie for reason x".  (or at least "this is so unoriginal I don't really give a shit to try to figure it out.)

That's what I think we need to learn how to do as a society.  And Deep Fakes are just going to make all this worse.  I'm sure that there are people naive enough to think that Iron Man said "Solid Dick" because they saw an edited comic panel.

And we all need to accept that someone else might label us "clueless idiot on subject x" and that's perfectly their right too.  Nor do they owe you the right to correct the misimpression (if it is one).

I will enjoy if we can synthesize the best things and see actors re-created in all the best ways (proper respect etc).  I do find it a bit humorous that Keanu Reeves is probably one of the most scanned humans due to the Matrix movies (and other things he did).  So he's probably the actor who they could do this easiest to ... and he really doesn't need to be made to look younger.

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15 Jan 2020 00:36 - 15 Jan 2020 00:37 #66434 by kikass2014
Replied by kikass2014 on topic The Joker
Due to the amount of cg in films today, I wouldn't be surprised if most actors are now digitally scanned tbh.

My friend and I joked about this, in that Hollywood probably has actors come in when they aren't filming and records them reading a dictionary so they can synthesize them reading any role :D

I wouldn't be surprised if that's pretty close to the truth :P 

The Deep Fake stuff is scarily realistic, even at this stage.  And will probably be perfected in the next few years.

Peace.

/K
Last edit: 15 Jan 2020 00:37 by kikass2014.

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