It’s No Joke: “Joker” One of the Most Successful Films of the Decade

Mark Lewis, Contributor

“I used to think that my life was a tragedy, but now I realize, it’s a comedy.”

One of the most entertaining, intriguing, and controversial films of the year, Todd Phillips’ Joker has captivated audiences around the world with its unique portrayal of the iconic DC villain. As of November, the movie has accumulated nearly $1 billion worldwide, poised to be among the most profitable comic book films of all time.

Joaquin Phoenix plays Arthur Fleck, a troubled, mentally-ill man beaten down by society and looking to find his place any way he can. His actions inadvertently lead to a city-wide revolt against the rich in Gotham, setting a violent and gritty scene for Fleck’s  journey. He eventually takes on his persona as “The Joker,” a clown with no regard for morality and even less regard for the stability of society.

While the film’s plot, cinematography, and immersive acting have garnered it fame across the world, it has also seen a surprising-yet interesting-rise in controversy. Many news outlets and websites have made note of the film’s violent themes, and how it seems to “glorify” mental illnesses such as depression and psychosis, some even going as far as to suggest that the film would lead to real-world violence. While stories like this have made some moviegoers wary, the sheer charm of the film ensure that people will continue to watch it as long as it is in theaters.

Personally, I believe that Joker is a masterpiece of a film. It combines excellent cinematography with a compelling plot line, which is all wrapped together with the incredible acting of Phoenix. It delves into disturbing subjects, and gives a fresh, contemplative spin on the classic comic book story we have all come to love. Joker is truly an origin story where even the main character is an enigma in itself.