A movie called ‘Joker’ should really have some laughs, don’t ya think? Well, if that’s what you want, you’re going to have to see a different flick. The trailer for the latest Joker origin story is anything but funny. It’s not even as terrifying as we thought it would be. It’s mostly just… heart-wrenching and sad.
When the teaser for Joker dropped back in April, we were ready for a film that would beef up the backstory and do a deep-dive on what led Gotham’s most make-up-encrusted villain to a life of crime. What we didn’t expect was to feel profound sympathy for the Joker as he was met with disappointment after disappointment and left isolated and alone. It’s weird to say but, HE JUST WANTS LOVE AND VALIDATION LIKE THE REST OF US.
In the trailer, we’re given a lot more context for Joaquin Phoenix’s Arthur Fleck—an aspiring stand-up comedian who just wants to make people smile. He’s met with a series of demoralizing criticisms and setbacks—a woman who doesn’t want him playing with her child, a disengaged therapist—all while trying to deal with his own depression. The final blow appears to be when his idol, a David Letterman-type comedian-turned-talk-show-host played by Robert De Niro, makes fun of him on TV.
We don’t care who you are, being belittled by your idol is HARSH. Why do we feel compelled to give the Joker a hug? What’s happening? This doesn’t feel right.
Where the teaser revealed the violent part of Fleck’s backstory, this emotional component is somehow so much more heartbreaking. Are we going to need to bring tissues to this thing?
The terrifyingly reality-based tale of the Joker will see its North American premiere at TIFF in September where Joaquin Phoenix will also be receiving the Tribute Actor Award along with Meryl Streep. The film will hit theatres worldwide October 4th.