We can forget that Jared Leto’s Joker ever happened, Joaquin has revived Ledger.
Joaquin Phoenix nailed the depressed and helpless take on the Joker character (pc DC Films)
For everyone who loved Heath Ledger’s Joker in the “Dark Knight” series, here is as close as you are going to get to relive it. Joaquin Phoenix’s take on Joker is like a younger version of the “Dark Knight” Joker even without being an official prequel.
“Joker” (directed by Todd Phillips) creates its own origin story of the famous Gotham villain separate from the comics through displaying Arthur Flecks (Joaquin Phoenix) battle with mental illness while being outcasted as a clown performer in a run down Gotham. Fed up with society and not being noticed his whole life, he finally snaps a starts his rise to a delusional psychopath in clown makeup with a following of lower-class citizens pissed off at the government and higher-ups.
Claiming to not be a prequel to “The Dark Knight” Joker, it’s hard to dismiss the clear connections and easter eggs referring to Heath Ledger’s Emmy winning Joker performance. From the near exact frame by frame copy of Bruce Wayne’s parents being killed in front of him to the Gotham Hospital being the exact same one that is blown up in “The Dark Knight.”
On a serious note, the film takes a dip into the reality that some face in society struggling with depression and delusion while being looked down on for having a mental illness and being pointed to get help that doesn’t exist from people that do not care for the human and just see a patient.
The film was met with controversy and concern that it would provoke violence. The film took criticism for idolizing a killer and making murder feel reasonable. Many theaters across the US took extra precaution, and some even closed after receiving threats. Although the heaving concern, there was no actual reported threats.
The rarely good DC film may only be a stand-alone film even with its success. Although, many people in Hollywood don’t mind going back to the well to suck every last drop of magic. But until then, DC fans will have to hope the Suicide Squad reboot with Harley Quinn and no Joker doesn’t flop like “Batman vs. Superman: Dawn of Justice,” “Suicide Squad,” “Green Lantern,” “Man of Steel,” “Justice League,” and all of the other DC failures while it tries to compete with the superhero juggernaut at Marvel Studios.