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Joker (2019 Movie)

Discussion in 'Movies' started by Sam Favate, Jun 13, 2018.

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  1. Josh Steinberg

    Josh Steinberg Executive Producer
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    Well, at least I got to hear myself talk :D

    But Tony and I go way back on superheroes, he always gets the benefit of the doubt in my book.

    Switching gears, @JohnRice are you set up for Atmos? I saw this in an Atmos theater and I’m usually not a big multichannel sound guy. If it’s loud, clear and I can hear the front channels clearly, I’m good. But I thought this film in particular used Atmos effects in a really clever way to put you in Arthur’s headspace. I loved in particular the sound design when he’s dreaming about being in the audience of the talkshow, and how the soundstage seems to follow him as he’s invited onstage. I like that they used the clever sound design for those moments besides just using it for action scenes.
     
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  2. JohnRice

    JohnRice Executive Producer

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    I'm minimally Atmos enabled. I have the full capability for 11 channels, and currently have 7.1.2 with the final 2 being reflecting modules on top of my front speakers, so that's the minimal part. I have all the electronics for 11 channels, and my HT has a floating ceiling, so it's about as easy as it can be to go with proper, in-ceiling Atmos speakers. I have a lot of home upgrades in the need, including several appliances that are dying or dead, so it's all part of the plan. This year...

    I did notice that the soundstage opened up when I interpreted the audience to be inside Arthur's head.
     
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  3. Josh Steinberg

    Josh Steinberg Executive Producer
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    Did you notice any of the sound design stuff as adding to the movie? I’d imagine that 7.1.2 would still be pretty neat.
     
  4. JohnRice

    JohnRice Executive Producer

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    Yeah, I added on a sentence to the end of my last post.
     
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  5. Message #425 of 493 Jan 18, 2020
    Last edited: Jan 18, 2020
    JohnRice

    JohnRice Executive Producer

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    Just to add, it was really obvious the first time he was watching (actually, suddenly he was in attendance) The Late Show, largely due to the radical opening up of the soundstage, that the movie had been transported into his imagination.
     
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  6. TonyD

    TonyD Who do we think I am?
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    But that’s what we’re here for to talk about movies whether we like them or not.

    This isn’t one of my favorite movies but I like the discussion we are all having about it.
     
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  7. Message #427 of 493 Jan 18, 2020
    Last edited: Jan 18, 2020
    JohnRice

    JohnRice Executive Producer

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    I'll write this explanation, then I'm dropping this particular topic. (Yes, I will drop it)

    Your first post after seeing Joker started with...
    I simply don't believe you have any interest in actually discussing the movie, or have the slightest willingness to find anything to appreciate about it. So no, I do not believe your questions are honest. You aren't asking for understanding of the story, or the movie's entertainment value. Mind closed.

    In my case, it was pretty obvious what kind of movie this is, and I hadn't found myself in the mood to watch it, for several months. So, I didn't watch it, because I positively can't understand the purpose of watching a movie with the anticipation and intention of disliking it (Got out of it exactly what exactLy what I expected. And that wasn’t much). I was beginning to wonder when, or if I would ever feel like watching it. Then, on Thursday the thought just hit me. "I want to watch Joker." The time was right, my mind was open and I was prepared to give it a chance and appreciate whatever it had to offer. I didn't get to it until today, but I was still in the right frame of mind. A lot of movies are junk food and don't require anything from the viewer. Others require the right frame of mind, or they simply aren't worth the effort.

    Appreciating a movie can only come after trying to understand it. If someone makes no effort to understand it, they can't expect their opinion of it to have much value. I also try to understand movies I don't like. Sometimes I discover that I simply didn't understand them, but once I do, I like them.
     
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  8. TonyD

    TonyD Who do we think I am?
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    John you seem a little harsh on what you think of my thoughts on the movie.

    I still think there can be good discussion whether I do or don’t have a high opinion of this movie.
    Not sure why this particular time you feel this way.

    Is it really all that unusual to have a preconceived idea on a movie before seeing it and then that feeling is realized after seeing it.

    We've both been around here long enough to know that I’m not usually one who gets all bent out of shape about a movie before seeing it as some others have done.

    I haven’t criticized anyone’s opinion or said I think anyone is wrong.

    I’m just talking about a movie that didn’t work for me.
    Explaining why.
    Josh actually responded to my what’s the point question with a very thought out post a few posts back about the movie that makes a lot of sense to me.

    Are you saying if I don’t like the movie I should say, “ eh I thought it stunk” and then leave the topic?
     
  9. Message #429 of 493 Jan 18, 2020
    Last edited: Jan 18, 2020
    TonyD

    TonyD Who do we think I am?
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    Looks like only three of us are in here anyway so maybe the movie is all talked out.
     
  10. Mike Frezon

    Mike Frezon Moderator
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    Guys: We are STILL talking too much about each other...rather than about the film itself. Anyone on the forum should be able to critique a film without having to have their motivations questioned by other members.

     
  11. JohnRice

    JohnRice Executive Producer

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    I hadn't thought about it that way. So, I can see the possibility there is a subtext that forces Arthur to go to such extremes to protect his job. It got me thinking about the whole concept of Arthur being "weak". I think the argument that he's too feeble and childish to be a true nemesis for Batman might be completely missing the point. He's clearly not only broken but also powerless. He actually proves himself to be someone you don't want to mess with. He doesn't shy away from a fight, either. So, what if he got out from behind the 8-ball and found some empowerment? Hero worship, which is clearly developing, and minions to help him carry out his wishes. It started occurring to me that he very well could have everything necessary to become The Joker. I've started seriously questioning the belief that he's incapable of that. Many despots who rose to power, rather then being born to it, were harmless, pitiful jokes to the people who didn't believe in them, until it was too late.
     
  12. Josh Steinberg

    Josh Steinberg Executive Producer
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    The skeptic in me wonders whether the movie is actually aware, that is, if the filmmakers are aware of these questions and asking them on purpose, or if they’re just aping Taxi Driver because that seemed like a cool thing to do. That it’s the Hangover guy makes me skeptical, but that’s probably a bias not founded in reality.

    I think it’s a movie that I’ve enjoyed talking about more than I enjoyed watching. There are some dark, depressing movies that I actually enjoy returning to because they can help me work through a bad mood or get some needed perspective. I’m not sure Joker falls into that category for me. There are times when it felt almost like the first draft of an idea rather than a fully fleshed out one, and I wish it had been a little stronger in the writing and structure. But Phoenix is also fantastic and rises above any shortcomings in the material. To me, he’s never quite unrecognizable in the role the way that Heath Ledger seemed to vanish, but it almost works to the film’s favor that you’re watching all of this happen to an actor like Phoenix that you’re familiar with and might feel like you know what to expect from. Some of his acting tricks are familiar from his other roles but he’s using those tools at a really high level here.
     
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  13. JohnRice

    JohnRice Executive Producer

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    All valid points. It wouldn't be the first movie that accomplished more depth and complexity than the creators ever imagined or intended. On the other hand, the other movie I watched today was Once Upon a Time... In Hollywood, which left me wondering WTH took so stinking long, and was it even worth it?
     
  14. Josh Steinberg

    Josh Steinberg Executive Producer
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    There’s been some interesting discussion in that thread since it came out!

    Like Joker, I found myself liking individual parts more than their sum total.
     
  15. JohnRice

    JohnRice Executive Producer

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    Well, Joker resonated with me more than I'd ever wish. There have been some dark, dark points in my life. I understand that character more than I like.
     
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  16. Josh Steinberg

    Josh Steinberg Executive Producer
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    I think it’s clearly designed to provoke those feelings.

    It exists in that uncomfortable space that’s the unresolvable conflict between “Two wrongs don’t make a right” and “If you hit someone enough, eventually they’ll hit back.”

    We’re shown plenty of examples early on, before the POV gets all skewed, of Arthur being unambiguously treated like crap through no fault of his own. He gets beaten up at work, and then is revictimized when he’s fired for it. He clearly needs mental health care and loses access to it. He makes a small child laugh on a bus, and gets screamed at by the mother. They’re effective scenes and I think they’re broad enough to remind us of petty slights and grave injustices we may have personally endured. It makes you wonder how your own life could have gone if you missed out on the few breaks you might have caught along the way. Would any of us turned out as good as we have if we had never ever had a moment of feeling that anything in this world was meant for us?

    I think a reasonable argument can be made that this movie presents a version of that uncomfortable contradiction I mentioned earlier. Arthur gets all the worst breaks, but that doesn’t excuse his actions. But society has failed Arthur at all levels from basic human decency and kindness to legally required public services, and that doesn’t seem excusable either. A character committing unjustifiable actions in an unjust world. Almost chicken and egg.

    It’s not a comfortable head space to live in for too long.
     
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  17. Colin Jacobson

    Colin Jacobson Lead Actor

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    Here's the clip:



    Cool that De Niro went along with it!
     
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  18. Message #438 of 493 Jan 19, 2020
    Last edited: Jan 19, 2020
    JohnRice

    JohnRice Executive Producer

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    OK, on the theme of DeNiro being incapable of acting as a talk show host in a movie. Then, people espousing this must believe he is actually a psychotic, murderous gangster in real life, since he's so effective in that role.

    It's called "acting". Talented actors can actually portray characters who are completely different from the actor. Radical concept, isn't it?

    edit... I guess I was feeling sarcastic...
     
  19. TonyD

    TonyD Who do we think I am?
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    John what's going on?
     
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  20. Message #440 of 493 Jan 19, 2020
    Last edited: Jan 19, 2020
    JohnRice

    JohnRice Executive Producer

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    No filter.

    should have just left it alone.
     

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