The Joker, or how to watch a movie through concepts


The Joker is a magnificent movie in all its aspects. Joachim Phoenix simply nailed it. But most importantly, it is a movie that can change your perception on life and on society. Without spoiling the movie for those of you who haven’t watched yet (please go ahead), i found it rich in concepts and here are some of them:

Karl Marx names it: the Collective Consciousness: meaning culture and its impact on our way of being in general. In The Joker, society can be divided into rich people and poor people. In the movie, poor people are being imprisonned in their poverty and in trash and you can say they are invisible. Which drives the joker to become visible.

Violence: our inner true nature is agressivity as points it Nietzsche, Freud and many others, that it is suppressed by socialization. In times of misery, it is more likely to appear. The Joker is mostly psychologically violent but so interesting.

Psychosis: I don’t know how accurate it is showed in movies, but for sure it is defined or showed in The Joker as having hallucinations and as the lack of inhibitions. Somehow, at least in fiction, it is boldly linked to a lack of love.

The intricate link between art and mental illness: more precisely the desire of being known and recognized by the mass. The desire of becoming a hero. (And on this subject precisely, i am very proud that i had written a short short-story recently that you can check by clicking on the links at the end of this post).

The joker or the clown: as recurrent figures in psycho and horror movies. The paradox of sadness and mental illness underlying the capacity of making people happy. Behind colorful and grotesque make up and masks, there is craziness. Which explains coulrophobia or the phobia of clowns.

Life as a joke: That’s the tragic truth you have after watching this movie which ends on a lighter note strange enough. I was smiling and happy at the end of it. Life as a joke and a lie is nietzschean idea: “The lie is a condition of life”, Nietzsche wrote.

I could go on and on about The Joker, a must watch because it is a smart deep movie. You will not look at a clown the same way. And for those of you who didn’t read my short-story, The Artist, here are the links:

The Artist (I)The Artist (II)The Artist (III)The Artist (IV)The Artist (V)The Artist (VI)The Artist (VII)The Artist (VIII)