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  • Entertainment

MOVIE: Joker and Judy jostle for top spot

Wednesday, 9th October, 2019 7:00pm
MOVIE: Joker and Judy jostle for top spot
MOVIE: Joker and Judy jostle for top spot

ON first glance, there are not many similarities between a film about a comic book villain and a biopic of Judy Garland. 

But look a little closer, and you’ll see that the two movies are strangely alike.

‘Joker’ stars Joachin Phoenix as the unhinged jester in the latest offering from Warner Brothers who seem to now specialise in films about crazy clowns (they also produced ‘IT’). 

And in case you were wondering, yes it’s the same DC Comics character who appears in the Batman series, and was famously played by Heath Ledger in 2008’s ‘The Dark Knight’. 

Interestingly, Ledger won a best supporting actor Oscar for that performance, and Phoenix is in the running to win again as best actor, for what is an outstanding performance. 

Directed by Todd Philips (‘A Star is Born’), this is a disturbingly brilliant take on mental illness and what happens to those who are thrown on society’s scrap heap. We award it a review score of five stunning stars. 

‘Judy’ features Bridget Jones’ very own Rene Zellweger (who hasn’t appeared in much lately) in the title role, doing almost as good a job as Phoenix in portraying another deeply troubled character. 

Unfortunately in this case, we’re not witnessing a comic book creation, and Garland’s tragic life is laid bare for all to see. 

Showing Judy’s abusive treatment as a child star through to unsuccessful relationships and an ongoing drinking problem, the film benefits from just the right amount of humour and uplifting musical numbers. Highly recommended. 

Getting a cinema release this week is Netflix’s ‘The King’, starring Timothee Chalamet as Henry V, in a modernised retelling of the famous Shakespeare tale. 

For lovers of this genre, the movie has much to offer, and may result in an acting nomination for its lead during awards season.   

And finally, for fans of ‘Brass Eye’ star Chris Morris, his new venture, ‘The Day Shall Come’, is a bonkers comedy starring Anna Kendrick and Marchant Davis as a Miami based preacher who sets up a black revolutionary community which the FBI mistake as a terrorist cell. Sporadically funny, this deserves special mention for its originality.   

Paul O’Rourke

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