Oscar Voters Give Their Honest Opinions About Joker


Joker​ is dividing the heck out of audiences
far and wide, including one very significant crowd: Oscar voters. ​The Hollywood Reporter​ recently spoke
with a number of members of the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences, and like
critics and audiences, they were largely split on the film. First, let’s hear from the crowd that loved
it. One male member of the Members at Large Branch
who saw the film at the official Academy screening noted that the flick was well-received by
the 500 audience members, and said, “I think it’s brilliant. Joaquin Phoenix has never been better. […] I thought that the [director of photography],
production designer and others created the look and feel of the period really well, and
the fact that it has very contemporary themes of economic/class inequities felt just right. Overall, a home run.” A female member of the same branch agreed,
although she admitted that her, quote, “stomach was still churning” the day after viewing
the film. She added, “It made me uncomfortable from the very first
frame to the last, but I thought the movie was extraordinary. It’s the most outstanding performance I’ve
seen in many years […] It’s still early, but I can certainly see myself nominating
it for best picture. And [Phoenix] has to get nominated, or the
actors branch doesn’t know what it’s doing.” A male member of the writers’ branch compared
the film favorably to the last picture to score an Oscar win for an actor portraying
the Joker, saying, “I thought the filmmaking was exceptional
certainly the most innovative superhero movie since The Dark Knight. […] I haven’t seen any of this season’s
‘Academy’ movies yet, but, artistically, I think this film is stronger than many of last
year’s Oscar-nominated films.” Then there was one male member of the producers’
branch who boldly predicted that Joker will deliver come February, saying, “I loved it and it will win Best Picture. I am really bored with all the superhero movies,
but here I really liked it because it’s a great movie before it’s a genre movie.” To say that many of the Oscar voters who spoke
with The Hollywood Reporter were not quite so impressed would be a massive understatement. Those who disliked the film disliked it intensely,
and they didn’t hold back when discussing what they perceived to be Joker’s faults. One female member of the executive branch,
while praising Phoenix’s work, simply couldn’t puzzle out the point of the movie. She said, “Strange, depressing film. I was vaguely mesmerized, but… to what end? I found it severely lacking any specific thematic
point. Great performance and impressive filmmaking,
but a rather unpleasant experience overall.” One male member of the directors’ branch called
the flick a “cynical mess,” one that was not so much influenced by the works of Martin
Scorsese as it was derivative of his works. He said, “I also found it to be more than a bit irresponsible,
in terms of its depiction of both mental illness and violence. […] It also seems the film was made only
to provoke. But I find it isn’t interesting enough to
do that. Subtlety is not the director or lead actor’s
strong suit here. […] Finally, I found the film to be a big
disappointment… and one filled with self-importance.” A male member of the documentary branch stated
that while the film was admittedly well-made, he found it to be downright irresponsible
of the filmmakers to unleash it upon a world in which unhinged, male loners seemingly perpetrate
violence every other day. He said, “Who knows what effect it will have on some
deranged sociopath in today’s climate of gun violence? […] Bottom line: technically an interestingly
experimental genre film that presents a socially dicey spectacle that I found personally repugnant.” Although most Oscar voters’ opinions came
down firmly on one side of the fence or the other, there was a distinct minority that
fell into the “undecided” camp. One male member of the producers’ branch was
befuddled as to how he should vote, even though he personally loved the film. He explained, “I don’t see any reason why this movie should
be out in the universe. There is nothing in it that starts a conversation
it just pours lighter fluid on a conversation that’s staring us in the face every week. […] I don’t know if it should be banned
or it should be given every award!” Another male member of the same branch was
blown away by the film’s technical merits, but nevertheless found it literally too difficult
to watch due to its subject matter, saying, “I found the craft to be stunning on every
level beautiful photography, design, costumes. But I deeply despise the movie. […] We had to drink away our discomfort. […] It was the first movie in history that
was too dark for me.” Based on all of these comments, it seems like
Joker has roughly a 50/50 chance of scoring an Oscar win, and its strongest chance seems
to be in the Best Actor category. With a good number of Oscar voters on its
side, though, it’s possible that the flick could score nominations for its direction
and cinematography, for which its has received pretty consistent praise. It could even buck the odds to score a Best
Picture nomination, and if it does, it’s not outside the realm of possibility that it could
win; at the moment, one online odds maker has the flick dead even with Scorsese’s The
Irishman as the favorites to take home the big prize, according to Bleeding Cool. Perhaps Joker really will get the last laugh
at the 91st Academy Awards ceremony, which takes place on February 9th, 2020. “Ah ha ha ha ha.” Check out one of our newest videos right here! Plus, even more Looper videos about your favorite
stuff are coming soon. Subscribe to our YouTube channel and hit the
bell so you don’t miss a single one.

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Reader Comments

  1. john duran

    If it’s controversial ok that’s up for debate but it’s undeniable that Joaquin Phoenix did an outstanding job in his performance in this movie

  2. john duran

    I’ll tell you what if joker doesn’t win an Oscar I’m never watching the oscars again. Plus joker is only reason why I will be watching the upcoming oscars to begin with

  3. jtomos

    You know that a movie is spot on, when the negative critiques reject the movie because of political reasons.
    Most of these negative voices just validate the movie even more, and makes it self-explanatory (to those who have eyes…).

    This movie ain't pretty (scratch that, it is very pretty, but not nice pretty), ain't funny (ok, it has a very funny part, I'm a bad human being), and I don't like the necessity of it, but I haven't seen a movie for a long time that does what a movie supposed to do.

    This is art, as much as Hollywood can produce an art movie. This the Taxi Driver, the Deer Hunter, the Falling Down, the Fight Club of this decade.

    Academy awards are big BS, but still, this should be the winner in most categories: picture, direction, cinematography (oh those subtle differences in tone as the movie progresses, those dream vs reality shots), production, editing, original screenplay, actor, score (dark as a cave which haven't seen sunlight for a billion years), sound editing, -mixing, production design, makeup, costume.
    Damn, if I consider the current trend of US film making it even should win the best foreign language film award – well half of the critiques have not understood it.

  4. TheEarthCoreM

    If your a critic that seriously thinks that a movie will provoke violence, your an idiot, don't blame the film. If someone results to violence after watching a movie, they are already in a bad place, blame it on the situation there in, not the film.

  5. Lhasa Thailand

    I did not particularly liked the movie, at all.
    However, this 'outrage' about the fact that it's somehow not oke because of the political and social climate is plain dumb.

    Like i said, i did not like the movie itself that much. But Joaquin's acting in this movie can not possibly be overlooked. His performance was absolutely haunting and incredible.
    It is the strongest piece of acting i have seen in a very very long time.

    And if in the future Joaquin would reprise the roll as the Joker once more in the future i would go see it solely for that reason alone.

  6. Super Mega SS 88 Ultra Rightwing Purity Death Squad

    The audience isn't split on the film, the media is. Because it reflects back to them what they do: bully people into becoming mass shooters.

  7. Juke G

    People who didn't get the movie obviously don't know the comic book history and what Joker really is as a character….I not a big DC fan….But this movie doesn't feel like a DC one, yeah you have to know some Joker history to fully get it…But overall, it is a fantastic movie….Probably my favorite of 2019

  8. Frank N

    It seems to me this video is trying to sell the false notion that this movie might be good or bad depending on who sees it. it's like the usual. tedious outburst of politically correctness where you find yourself annihilated by thousands of different voices and opinions, aimed at (maybe) increasing the background buzz so that the objectivity gets lost in the noise. Typical of our times, typical of people promoting fear. Well guess what, it has already won best picture at the Venice film festival, a festival that traditionally awards very underground, non comformist, non mainstream pictures. it is objectively one of the most intense actor performances ever. To those who feel shocked by its violence and message, get over it, it's realistic, it's a mirror of our unjust society, but you are too afraid to admit that.

  9. Shvabicu

    A movie is showing how huge economic and social disparity leads to suffering and displays the effects of that suffering on mentally ill people in particular.

    Economically and socially well-off motherfuckers who are living the easy life because of the suffering of others: "I don't get it. It's disgusting."

    YOU are the problem.

  10. Jack

    I think Joker was excellent, both in direction and acting. At times you feel for Arthur because he's so sad and alone… and other times you're shocked at how horrifically unremorseful he is after his insane crimes

  11. Алексей Ватрушкин

    Joaquin Phoenix deserves an oscar and not just one! Master, Gladiator, Walk the Line and ofc Joker. Give him the deserved Oscar!

  12. Tom Norton

    Joaquin Phoenix will probably be nominated by the Academy, even if he doesn't win. Now they just need to give Rosa Salazar a nomination, preferably the Oscar itself. So what if Alita's motion capture? If anything that makes her more deserving of a nomination. Mo-cap suits don't provide as much freedom as most costumes, but Rosa seemed so comfortable in hers that you'd think it was part of her own body. The only times where she seems to have any trouble moving are when Alita's supposed to have trouble moving, like when she's getting used to her body, is underwater, or Grewishka rips her to pieces. She also has a very pleasant and expressive voice and even when she's not using it, you can see what Alita is thinking and feeling just through her expressions and body language. Rosa should at least be nominated for an Academy Award.

  13. Yolo Swaggins

    The fact it makes people uncomfortable is just another reason why it’s such a great movie!! When it makes people feel so strongly it does it’s job.

  14. noob gaming

    Those people who hate this movie because of the subject matter.. you are part of the problem and to you I say, we need to help people who are dealing with mental illnesses no matter the race,sex,or creed. And not try to pretend they dont exist doing that causes more harm than anything else

  15. Cheshire Cat

    Is this a joke? Why are these people allowed to judge movies? If it made you uncomfortable on such a deep emotional level and had such a huge impact on you that you thought about it days later, it did its job!!! you might not like it but you have seen true art!

  16. McBaron

    When critics call it dark and sickening and I realize Joker doesn't even come close to the amount of carnage and killing Heath Ledger's Joker was responsible for.

  17. Freddy H

    The joker is the peoples movie. Oscar is controlled by elite, the very one villanized in the joker movie. Thats why they dont want joker to win cause it goes against their narrative. But the people love it cause it reflects our true disconnection with our current society. If joker does not win the oscar, i say we all should riot in the street with joker mask. 'you get what you deserved'

  18. Flibgonrt Sheglis

    You know I am so sick of hearing that stupid "critique" that this movie will insight violence. Apparently this genius never heard the phrase "Art imitates life". What are we supposed to do, stop a brilliant movie because it is too real? I do agree with one critic that said the movie lacked a definite point, but, for me, I was okay leaving the theatre without some profound lesson learned. And for those critics who hated it because it was too dark? Really!!? You are a goddamned movie critic, so be one! I am a professor. I didn't "hate" Orwell's 1984 because it was dismal! That is kind of the whole point – it's dismal!
    Best Picture aside, if Joaquin Phoenix does not win for best actor, I will lose all faith in the integrity of any of these award shows – not that I had a ton to begin with.

  19. Amplified Emotions

    "It made me feel too uncomfortable!"

    Well… isn't that the point of this movie? To make you feel uncomfortable over Arthur's story, thus ending up feeling sympathetic but also kinda despiteful towards him 'cause he ends up taking things too far? Isn't it suppose to make you THINK and reflect on what you're seeing?

    What did these people thought they were going to see? A movie about a funny guy in a clown costume??

  20. biggerson51

    these ppl are disgusted at the fact that if brings to light to a lot of the problems we have going on in our society, mainly the class warfare that the rich dont want exposed.

  21. Adil Ali

    "Certainly the most innovative superhero movie since dark Knight".. these are the guys who vote for Oscars? seriously? no wonder Leonardo DiCaprio had to wait that long..

  22. Chris topher

    Sorry – but the negative Nellies can shove it. This movie is absolute BRILLIANCE from start to finish, from every possible angle. It deals with 1) economic inequality, 2) slipping into the depths of mental illness (and it could happen to ANYONE of us), and 3) society's neglect of those most in need of its help and services. It should win every Oscar in every category as far as I'm concerned.

  23. Tara Noble

    If Joker was the most disturbing movie you've ever seen then you shouldn't be a film critic because clearly you haven't seen enough films.

  24. ItsJustScarleth 20

    It's not about gun violence! It does show some violent scenes that are very graphic, but there's more to that, that is not what the movie us trying to portray.
    It is an eye opener to make us conscious about how awful our society is nowadays, how we are not sympathetic with each other and we are just selfish, don't care about the other which leads to how the rich and powerful don't care about society, how they control, steal from us, brainwash, decide what is right and wrong, about mental illness awareness. People don't get that it is an eye opener film, think about it! A masterpiece every piece of it is amazing, people don't appreciate that, that's sad, people are trying so hard to hate this movie and find flaws about it.

  25. Jaana Viit

    As someone who is an avid film fan…. on the spectrum from Francois Truffaut films to the likes of 'Chick flicks' and everything in between. This is the most memorable and outstanding performance I feel I've ever seen. Just the ability to maintain that depth of emotion and particular energy that is so intense/ real and tangible. I mean…. Seriously beautiful performance.

  26. Kool-Aid Man

    If a critic watches this film and asks what was its point then clearly that person shouldn’t be a film critic. What a moron

    Also, ragging on this movie for being irresponsible and supposedly glorifying violence, Id just like to say that we’re all responsible for our own actions. If a film pushed you to go on a rampage, then you were psychotic before watching it and you’d inevitably snap at some point, regardless of what you did or didnt watch.

  27. chapman2001

    It’s only controversial bc America doesn’t have gun control and people are so politically correct the left has seeped and embedded itself into Hollywood and made everyone in it so wet

  28. Richard Bergin

    It's funny to see how much the upper classes and the news outlets they own despise a film that comes from the perspective of someone crushed by the economic system they rigged and forced everyone to play. Every other superhero movie makes the billionaires the heroes, this one shows the other side so they pee themselves and cry about it.

  29. Oltavolt

    "We had to drink away our discomfort" – Damn, if a movie made me cope by drinking alcohol, I would not question the movie but ask myself if I have a drinking problem!

  30. LiltingSun

    Too dark??? Not a cause for conversation??? I'm 15 years old and LOVED IT, didn't check my phone ONCE (crazy for me lol). Plus I actually had an amazing talk about mental health with my mum afterwards 🙂 (also, those critics were actual cupcakes tf)

  31. Zach Penny

    This movie was a complete convoluted mess that hit its mark of mental illness but missed its mark of being a good movie and being a “Joker” movie. This wasn’t about the Joker as much as it was about sparking a very real conversation that needs to happen and that is already happening. Phoenix played a great deranged and lost character but by no means played a joker character. Joker is psychotic yes but he’s an elegant villain that is smarter than just about everyone and maybe even the bats as well as he’s calculated. He may seem like he’s chaotic and to an extent I would agree but he’s very calculated in his chaos. This joker was outlandish and had no true point to him. He started a riot on accident however a true joker would’ve known what he was doing and done it on purpose to create a sense of chaos. This isn’t joker this is a different movie with a mask and I don’t blame it for using this mask because that’s the easiest way to get it to a wide group of people. But I do think Phoenix should win an award for his acting however the movie should go back to the drawing board if wants to truly be a joker movie.

  32. Girl Alana

    The critic should've chose his words. It didn't lack any "thematic point," it simply has been seen in other movies like Fight Club (hallucinations), Shutter Island, etc. What makes this one unique is that it shows us that theme in a society.

  33. Reptive

    I like the movie, but I feel like the joker isnt really a dc joker. All the jokers before this one were crazy, and had a cool type of insane that made people attracted to them. This one seems very socially awkward, and doesn't really know what his actions cause… the dark knight joker in my opinion, is the best version of the crazy but in the entertaining way joker.

  34. Fernando Fierro

    This movie was straight up amazing its just something so extremely well and it even connects to us like what we would do if we could do anything how we would feel I love it alot the first day I saw it I hated it but after 2 days I understood it and its beauty I really like it and I think it should win the Oscar for sure

  35. House of Allena

    I have no problem with this movie at all, I loved this movie, yes it's dark, but isn't that some people's world in reality. Some of us have to stop sticking our heads like the ostrich with its head in the sand pretending that things like this can't happen in real life. The script was authentically, realistically and beautifully written. Joaquin Phoenix deserves best actor award, with his stellar performance, and if he does not get it I'm done with fricking Hollywood. It deserves best movie also. I don't care what they come with after. My next picture will be Us with Lupita N'yongo, her performance was riveting as well.

  36. Eric Maiello

    I'm definitely torn on this one. I enjoyed watching it. It was interesting and made me think about all the ways the society depicted in the film mirrored our own. But it also left my mind as soon as I got out of the theater. There wasn't anything in it really for me that I could take outside of my viewing experience. It was just a depiction of madness without offering any hints or clues on how a future like this can be avoided. I don't know, it just left something to be desired for me.

    Overall score?… I don't even know

  37. Marcus Pedrosa

    Who didn't like The movie should nota Go the theathers. Same thing is to say Why Americans movies about love if they don't know what love IS. This is how the worlds see It. Joker is a Masterpiece. Joaquim Phoenix gave us something that IS missing now days. Even The teenagers are Very inpresssed.

  38. Mystomachhurt

    Yeah no. The audience is not "split" or "in conflict" about the movie, the rotten tomatoes proves that. It is the critics that is split between.

  39. Yurties

    "I find it lacking any Specific thematic point" Where do they get these Oscar Voters? some of them are obviously complete morons and need to get the boot

  40. YtRobertPlays

    Too dark and not child friendly?

    That’s the point of the whole damn movie! These people should stick to watching Disney and crap

    Joker really proved how terrible the world is huh

  41. Walter The Terrible

    Why is a film supposed to be comforting? It challenged the viewers very well, I think. And the point was stated very clearly. Joker said "no one ever thinks what it's like to be the other guy" and that people had become uncivil because of it. The whole point of the film is that society took advantage of a nice benevolent man and turned him into an insane murderer. Everyone in the movie that was real was mean to him or ignored him. The purpose of the film was clear and admirable.

  42. Fish titz

    This movie is only "dangerous" in america because of the stupid gun laws. Nowhere else in the world is this looked upon as a dangerous movie. Especially not here in scandinavia. Yes, we've had some terrorist attacks, but there are no weekly(daily?) shootings by individuals filled with hatred. This is once again an attempt to blame movies and games for the actions of grown up people. If you couldn't buy a gun at every corner, guess what, people wouldn't get killed so often! It' a fucking movie. It's not dangerous, people with guns are.

  43. Stephen Dias

    Yes, a sociopath is going to be influenced by a crowd praised blockbuster. The main character wasn't even suffering from an antisocial disorder.

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