by ASH

The Joker we know has evolved through the years. There’s the comical one by Jack Nicholson, then there’s the gritty, edgy take by the late Heath Ledger (which he won an Oscar for posthumously). Jared Leto upped the craziness to a more psychotic level in Suicide Squad, but it is Joaquin Phoenix that breathes new life into the man who used to be known as Arthur Fleck, a fragile, broken soul torn apart by his childhood, and now, the society. If you have seen Joker and can’t get it out of your mind, here are five movies which you might like too.


If you’re a fan of Joaquin Phoenix, you’ll have to watch…

Irrational Man. Directed by Woody Allen, the crux of the movie is reflected in its title. A man becomes depressed, suffers from an existential crisis and commits a crime to feel reborn- totally irrational. Phoenix plays Abe, a college professor who’s struck with how meaningless life is and spirals into depression. He gets involved with two beautiful women, played by Parker Posey and Emma Stone, and somehow convinces himself to execute a sinister plan, with grave consequences. If there’s a type of role that Phoenix shines in, it’s definitely playing troubled souls. Brooding, drinking and frowning most of the time, this 2015 movie is a prelude to the ultimate tormented character that is Arthur Fleck.

Irrational Man

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If you want to see the movie that serves as the inspiration to Joker, then…

Taxi Driver is right up your alley. In fact, the 1976 Martin Scorsese movie also stars Robert De Niro (who incidentally appears in Joker as well), as a war veteran, Travis Bickle. He works as a night-time taxi driver in New York City in the 70s, where corruption, crime and sleaze blanket the city. All these fuel his rage and urge for violence, resulting in him hatching a plan to liberate a presidential campaign worker and an underage prostitute, played brilliantly by Jodie Foster. You can see the similarities in the setting and atmosphere of Joker’s Gotham and Taxi Driver’s New York City. The nuances of someone who’s shaped by the decadent nature of the society in Taxi Driver also heavily influenced Joker.

joker taxi driver


If you have a penchant for movies featuring psychotic characters, you’d love...

A Clockwork Orange. The late Stanley Kubrick is known for telling provoking stories and this 1971 movie is definitely one of them. Based on Anthony Burgess's novel of the same name, the movie uses disturbing, violent imagery to comment on psychiatry, youth gangs, juvenile delinquency and other social and political issues in a dystopian Britain in the future. Malcolm McDowell plays the central character Alex, who leads his gang of boys to wreak havoc everywhere he goes. They steal, rape, beat up people, and going on crime sprees without any remorse. But the real horror show beings when he gets caught, and volunteers for a “conduct-aversion” experiment, which is supposed to cure him of his urges to commit violence, except that it didn’t go as planned. The movie gets pretty twisted, so you’d need to have a strong stomach to watch it.

joker clockwork orange


If you love a good psychological drama, don’t miss…

Requiem for a Dream (2000), of course. Although Arthur didn’t take drugs, which is a key component in this Darren Aronofsky movie starring Ellen Burstyn, Jared Leto, Jennifer Connelly, and Marlon Wayans, the themes of being imprisoned in a world of delusion and reckless desperation is definitely shared by both movies. When the four key characters in the movie let their addition run too deep, they lose all sense of reality, existing in a world of delusion and visions of grandeur. Similarly, in Joker, Arthur is triggered by a series of events, not drugs, which hurtled him into a mental state where he becomes the hero of his story, and not the emotionally unstable, socially awkward person he is in real life.

joker requiem for a dream


If you enjoy a gritty and realistic comic book character, you’d love…

Logan. The X-Men are usually sleekly portrayed, enjoying fancy gadgets and dressed in nicely made suits. But Logan, or Wolverine (Hugh Jackman) in the 2017 movie of the same name is far from the glory days of the X-Men. In a future where mutants are almost all wiped out, Logan becomes and elderly and weary man who is just trying to get by in this hostile world. That is, until a mutant child crashes into his life, hunted down by scientists. It’s up to Logan to help her and other mutant kids to escape being captured and tortured. Expect plenty of raw scenes of carnage, delivered by Lauran, the mutant child, also known as X-23, and Wolverine himself. Stripped of the flashy costumes and even flashier tech, Logan is an enjoyable movie about a comic book hero existing in a world that we can relate to.

joker logan