Just back from the Friday night viewing at the local IMAX…
Certainly wasn’t your typical superhero/supervillian movie, that’s for sure. Thankfully that was pretty well known out of the gate, so I didn’t go into it with that preconception. When Phoenix was originally cast, I wasn’t thrilled but then quickly reminded myself I had the same reaction to Ledger, and we know how that ended.
No question about it - the guy can act, and he puts himself fully into the role. I thought he did a great job, one that could be on par with Ledger’s depiction but from an entirely different angle. Where Ledger was able to come in straight away as the mastermind villian, here Phoenix needed to built it up.
As an origin movie, I think it did a very good job nailing his spiral downward into madness. The writing pulled together the combonation of a society in turmoil, an outcast loner with a horrible past, and mental illness to mesh into a certain recepie for disaster…and disaster it certainly produced. When his prior coworker gets the scissors, my wife’s hand went to her mouth in horror…mark hit by the director.
Anyway…better than The Dark Knight? Mmmmm…no, but only because that movie was just more fun to watch. This one makes you think and really need to reflect on the journey of the Joker. Assuming it does well at the box office, the sequel WILL be something else I’m guessing.