When Iron Man came out, no one had expected superheroes to be the next most bankable trend in Hollywood.
But after some time, people started wondering when is this trend going to end? When would people get so exhausted by flashy optimistic heroes and stop going to the cinema for them?
They coined the term ‘superhero fatigue’ and eagerly awaits its arrival.
Joker, albeit the controversies surrounding it, might just be the answer to this.
It’s definitely not the first time a superhero movie took a more serious approach, but Joker was perhaps the first one to actually take it this far.
Joaquin Phoenix is a terrifyingly excellent actor, and he’s one of those actors that could get people interested in a movie just by being in it.
The treatment this movie would have gotten would be very different if it was any other actors helming this role.
The very concept of making an origin story for Joker is risky, many comic book fans would argue that the very concept of not having a distinct origin story is what made Joker so interesting and iconic in the first place.
But many of us still can’t help but be curious, about where this killer clown came from, and what made him this way.
The Killing Joke was the first proper attempt on Joker’s origin, with the idea of it being ‘one bad day’.
But Joker took a different approach, Arthur Fleck, Joker’s civilian identity, was born into tragedy(or comedy).
This is a movie that provides no proper satisfaction, it’s not just a guy down on his luck, it’s a guy who’s never had a good day in his life.
It’s not just an average decent sane guy who goes mad when everything goes wrong in his life, Arthur Fleck’s life was this way from the very start.
And that just makes so much sense.
This movie was both predictable and unpredictable at the very same time.
Predictable in the sense that, you know how this story ends, it ends with Arthur Fleck becoming the Joker.
Unpredictable because this movie doesn’t go the usual route you would expect it to, yet it still makes perfect sense, never once did I felt the movie was unbelievable or over the top.
For a story in this nature, we expect ups and downs, but in Joker, there’s only down, yet as Arthur Fleck falls, the Joker rises.
You see Arthur becoming Joker, bit by bit, like the metamorphosis of a butterfly.
He was invisible as Arthur Fleck, yet he was impossible to ignore as the Joker.
The best final touch to the movie was that the Joker never meant for any of his actions to be a political movement, he never wanted to inspire people to riot against the rich, but circumstances worked in his favour, and he became the Joker.
The Joker works as a standalone, and that’s also the beauty of it.
It was understandable and probably the right decision to leave Batman out of this movie, so as to not take the focus away from the Joker.
But there’s a part of me that wants to see the Batman in this universe interacting with the Joker, to see the aftermath of this madness, to see more of this Joker in this Gotham.
And this is where I wish the future of superhero movies would go, and this is how I believe we could avoid the superhero fatigue altogether.
Make movies that are different, comic books are filled with some of the most interesting characters and storylines, make use of that, make movies for them, but not just in the format we’ve already done a million times.
The Joker brought to us a haunting character study for one of the most iconic villains in comic book history, one that I’m thankful for.
It was a movie I did not know I needed until I saw it.
It paved the path for future superhero movies to also take a bold risk and be different.
Because of the Joker, I could look back on the history of cinema and remember this movie exists, and that makes me optimistic for the future of superhero movies.