This 'Joker' Video Of Joaquin Phoenix In Full Character Makeup Has Fans Feeling So Many Emotions
A new actor is taking on DC's iconic villain, and the first look of Joaquin Phoenix as the Joker have fans so ready for his origin story. Well, most fans. The Joker doesn't come out until October 2019, but director Todd Phillips gave audiences the peek they were waiting for with a short snippet of Phoenix in character on his Instagram. Fans may have their favorite interpretations of the Joker from throughout the years, which is why reactions seem mixed. While some seem to be welcoming Phoenix's portrayal of the character with open arms, others are questioning the film as a whole.
The brief video is fittingly set to The Guess Who’s 1969 song “Laughing." It shows Phoenix, as Arther Fleck, standing alone staring off into the distance and expressionless, wearing jeans and average clothing with no makeup on. As the song continues, the video shows flashes of the Joker over Arther, while he slowly grows a haunting smile until he ultimately transforms into the villain fans know him as. The end reveal shows Phoenix as the Joker, with a full face of makeup and eerily large smile, wearing a red suit jacket. He smiles and laughs before becoming totally straight-faced.
It's just a glimpse of Arther Fleck's origin story, but promises that the standalone film will explain so much about the villain's evolution. The video's already getting massive attention from fans, as polarized as it may be.
Some fans responded with brief Instagram comments of pure excitement like, "OHHHH MYYYYYYYYYY GOOOOOOOOODDDDD." But because the Joker has been channeled so many different times throughout the years, people are obviously taking that into consideration as well and wondering how this Joker will compare to others and fit into the DC landscape overall.
One fan wrote, "At first glance I disliked it. Now I can’t stop watching. He’s a mixture of Romero’s and Ledger’s Joker." (Cesar Romero played the Joker in the 1960's Batman series and Heath Ledger famously played the character in Christopher Nolan's modern film series before his untimely death in 2008.) Another fan wrote the following comment on the Instagram post, "Oh my God I love it. I hate that I have super high expectations for this because I'm going to be hyper-critical of everything, but Joaquin Phoenix NEVER disappoints... If the movie feels like this just felt then you are going to nail it."
And of course, there are skeptics. One fan questioned the video and the premise of the film overall, writing, "What makes the Joker so terrifying, captivating and ghastly is his vague origin. So I was on the fence when WB decided to give him a definitive origin story. With that said, this has certainly piqued my interest."
Days before Phillips released the video, he revealed the first photo of Phoenix in character. And even the first photo caused debate among fans and got mixed reactions. One person commented on the picture, writing, "Anyone who thinks this is 'not scary' or 'not effective' has no idea what a real performance is, what character depth is." Another wrote, "A little disappointing."
It's true that you can't please everyone, especially these days. Given the Joker's history and unique place in pop culture, however, Phillips and his team certainly have a lot to live up to.