Let me start by saying I am not a fan of any of the marvel/dc comic turned movies... Just not my thing. This senseless world of fantasy serves little purpose other than to mindlessly entertain. But then along comes Joker directed by Todd Phillips who prior to this offering was a fairly routine director with some monetary victories but nothing really that merited critique. In this movie the direction is flawless but it is the script (written by Phillips) where he should get all the credit. A mentally challenged individual (Phoenix should get Oscar nod and hopefully win for his powerful performance) slowly loses what little grasp he has on reality and ends up a following every evil thought he has. He repeats his life has been nothing but bad thoughts and for years he has tried to suppress them but by the end, he abandons all control both from outside and within. What makes this so remarkable... is that the Joker has never been shown to be a real person. Most of the villains in this genre are just presented as powerful insane maniacs trying to destroy the world but Joker... tries to show how a real human being could become so evil...prior to this film, someone this evil could only be represented in comic books or silly horror movies. So convincing is this character that the audience gets drawn into almost feeling sorry for him for the longest time only to pull back all the empathy once realizing what he has become. This movie has had its negative feedback only because how real this character could be and the congratulatory response on screen to his new persona is truly the frightening theme of the movie. How many Jokers are out there waiting for their own meltdown. Truly an horrific study of mental illness, society both past and present, and just what might await us in the future.

I give it a 10/10