Reaction Weekend

Joker review – a smart, dark look at American urban life

BY Alexander Larman   /  4 October 2019

It is rare that a mainstream film is released with the intensity of hype employed to promote Joker. There is the award-winning acclaim that it has already enjoyed (at the prestigious Golden Lion at Venice) and wild stories about how police have had to be drafted into screenings on its first weekend of release, and claims that nobody wearing clown makeup will be allowed admission. That sounds to me like the invention of a studio publicity department in the same way that Hitchcock reputedly refused latecomers entry to Psycho . It has been marketed, aggressively, as an event film, a comic-book picture that stands comparison to the work of Scorsese rather than whichever hack(s) directed Avengers: Endgame. None of which quite answers the question: is it any good?


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