The Joker laughed it’s way to the top of the box office with a record-breaking $93.5 million debut.

The Warner Bros. film is now the largest October domestic opening ever!

Read our review of the film below, written by our resident movie guru, B. Gunn.

Joker movie poster

‘Joker’ Review By B. Gunn

Joaquin Phoenix is a bit similar to the legendary emcee Rakim in that he, too, is no joke, but he likes to let his revolver smoke! “Joker” stars Phoenix, Robert DeNiro, Zazie Beets, and Frances Conroy. The movie chronicles the life of Arthur Fleck, a mentally ill professional clown struggling through life with seemingly no light at the end of the tunnel. Unfortunate circumstances occur which ultimately transforms him into the iconic villain… The Joker.

Deciding to make a stand-alone nemesis film is a gamble since there is no traditional famous protagonist to pair with. Let me be the first to tell you, this gamble paid off extremely well. I’ve sat in many, many theater seats since January 1st. “Joker” is one of, if not the, best movies of the year!

Warning: This “Joker” is not, I repeat, NOT, your typical superhero/supervillain movie – oh nooooooo. There is a dearth of action, little to no mind-boggling special effects, and zero people in capes flying around saving individuals in distress. Having said that, “Joker” delivers the most intense and captivating performances from all involved that will raise various discussions.

Phoenix’s portrayal of Arthur Fleck is legendary. This man experiences pain and heartache on a level that will break even the most patient of monks to the toughest of thugs. As you watch, inner-conflict takes over your body more with each scene.

Phoenix’s downward spiral becomes mournful yet magnificent. Unchecked emotions lead to psychotic epiphanies. He handles his business in this joint. If the Oscars were held tomorrow, I’d give Phoenix the award for Best Male Actor. The supporting cast doesn’t disappoint, either. Everyone works in unison to deliver a masterpiece of a film.

Director Todd Phillips brings the absolute best out of his cast, exceeding expectations. The cinematography demands your attention as well. This overall depiction of Gotham City is grimy, depressing, and poverty-stricken. No one in their right minds would want to live there. The landscape captures the mood of the city and its inhabitants, the mood of desperation. Clever camera angles along with a moving musical score only propel “Joker” to untouchable heights. You’ll laugh to keep from crying.

 This movie doesn’t follow the rules. What I mean by that is some of the characters are played differently. There are interesting takes on well-known DC personas sure raise some eyebrows but that’s why “Joker” is so extraordinary. The characters don’t veer far from their original personalities but the refreshing takes are wonderful and shouldn’t upset “Batman” purists.

This film is more psychological thriller than anything, laced with plot twists, moral and societal checks, and takes a hard look at mental illness. I saw this flick twice, and I urge you to see it at least once. “Joker” is powerful and flawless in my opinion, and I’m giving it a Co-Sign CLASSIC!

Of course, the big debate is, who played Joker the best, Phoenix or Ledger? Listen closely because my Joker laugh will tell you; hahahahahahahahaha. Which one did I sound like? That’s my answer.

Did you check out Joker over the weekend? If so, what did you think?

If not, why not?