Failed comedian Arthur Fleck encounters violent thugs while wandering the streets of Gotham City dressed as a clown. Disregarded by society, Fleck begins a slow descent into madness as he transforms into the criminal mastermind known as the Joker.

The History Of The Joker

Joker debuts in theaters this weekend, offering fans the latest incarnation of the iconic titular villain, who has been around in many forms over the past 80 years through various movies and comic book appearances. Learn more about the Joker’s background in this pop culture history lesson from The Take:


Now you know the history of the Joker, but why has he become such a significant staple of both comic books and movies, such as Joker? For that answer, Insider’s The Art of Film goes deeper into the legacy of Batman’s greatest nemesis and explores why he’s not just a prevalent villain but also the perfect villain:


Joaquin Phoenix is garnering most of the attention for his portrayal of the Joker, but don’t sleep on the performance by Frances Conroy, who plays the title character’s mother in Joker. Whether she looks familiar to you and you aren’t sure why or you just want to see more of her work, IMDb’s No Small Parts showcases her career leading up this latest role:


There have been a lot of versions of the Joker on the big screen, but only one has garnered its actor an Oscar (posthumously) and been established as the fan favorite for more than a decade. So, everyone is wondering how Joaquin Phoenix’s portrayal in Joker compares to Heath Ledger’s in The Dark Knight. This video essay from Karsten Runquist examines the differences between them:


Joker isn’t just an awesome comic book movie, it’s an awesome movie, period. It offers no easy answers to the unsettling questions it raises about a cruel society in decline. Joaquin Phoenix’s fully committed performance and Todd Phillips’ masterful albeit loose reinvention of the DC source material make Joker a film that should leave comic book fans and non-fans alike disturbed and moved in all the right ways.

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