The Controversy Behind “Joker”

Audrey Wilson, Centurion Staff

The new movie “Joker” has sparked a huge amount of controversy and anxiety because of the gruesome violence the film depicts.

The film directed by Todd Phillips shows a man, Arthur Fleck, played by Joaquin Phoenix, struggling to achieve his dreams of a comedian. Fleck can hardly hold his job, lives in terrible conditions with his disturbed mother, and is constantly bullied and humiliated. It gets to the point where he’s had enough and begins to lash out using violence.

There’s been plenty of talk that this movie is disturbing and gives people the wrong idea that violence is the answer to a bad situation.

Many Bucks students have their own opinions as well.

“I think it’s a work of art. A movie doesn’t cause violence and society needs to stop taking things too far. Thousands of movies have violence,” said Ian Sullivan,20, business major at Bucks.

Sullivan made a good argument, but there are students who completely disagree.

Jamie Karol,19, an economics major, responded, “This movie disturbed me so much I almost walked out of the theatre. Several people enjoy movies because of the message they send out, this movie sends out the wrong one. The sad truth is that our society is filled with people like Arthur Fleck nowadays, so it’s just such a sensitive time to be putting out films like this one.”

Everyone has their own opinions on the film. According to the website Thrillist, audiences did not react well to “Joker.”

Due to social media posts the U.S military sent out an email to service members warning of the potential risks to seeing the movie. The social media posts were in reference to the 2012 theatre shooting in Colorado where a man dressed as the Joker killed 12 people during “The Dark Knight Rises” premier.

These types of posts caused waves of fear and anxiety that this could potentially happen again.

Despite the controversy and harsh criticism, “Joker” is the highest grossing R-rated movie.

It has currently made $788.1 million and could potentially be the first movie to ever reach $1 billion if the film is released in China.

“Joker” is currently playing in theaters.