He carries the film on curved shoulders: Joaquin Phoenix is the strong focus in an Oscar-winning thriller. Today he runs at Sky.
Emaciated, with a tense upper body and a penetrating laugh: As Batman’s later opponent, Joaquin Phoenix once again showed in “Joker” that he is one of the best actors of his generation. In the US drama by Todd Phillips, he can be seen as Arthur Fleck, a failed comedian who suffers from severe mental health problems and lives on the margins of Gotham City society.
It is a neglected city where the right of the stronger applies and where Arthur Fleck gets lost in his delusions. But then the tide turns for him and he becomes a celebrated hero of the lower class. The pay TV channel Sky streams the Oscar-winning blockbuster. Tonight, 8.15 p.m., the psychological thriller from 2019 is about on Sky Cinema premieres.
Although the character of the joker is known from numerous comics and films, director Phillips succeeds in telling a previously unknown story from the villain’s previous life with this character study. In some places this is a bit too easy and the tension cannot last well over two hours. Nonetheless, with this work Phillips presents a fascinating psychogram of an marginalized person and shows how a desolate society and escalating violence can benefit in a worrying way.
The real highlight, however, is Joaquin Phoenix. With his intense play, he dominates every scene and carries the film easily on his always curved shoulders. The US actor has been nominated for an Oscar three times (“Gladiator”, “Walk the Line” and “The Master”). At the beginning of this year he was finally able to triumph as a “joker”: The 45-year-old was awarded a Golden Globe and an Oscar for Best Actor for his performance.
In the USA, the haunting trailer for “Joker” had already led to a discussion about the violent crimes in this thriller even before the theatrical release. However, the Golden Lion for the best film at the Venice Film Festival is not the only proof that “Joker” is much more than a film about brutality. The music should be emphasized, flanked by the Icelandic cellist and composer Hildur Guðnadóttir. At a time when films are often accompanied by melodies that at most sound like canned food, it is a big exception.