Joker Review – A prick on our collective conscience
Plot: About the travails of social workers.
Partly satire and partly an emotional drama the best thing about Joker is that it does not miss out on narrating a story on screen amidst its main purpose to question the collective conscience of our society. The intention is very obvious but hardly a scene or two is in your face. The melodrama is kept beautifully minimal. Throughout the film Raju Murugan walks on a thin line and so easily he could have slipped into either side making this a tear-jerker or a loud documentary on the sad state of affairs. The dialogues are certainly bold and this is what every review about Joker will say. But what stands apart is that these dialogues while making a statement about the prevalent situation never stick out and care has been taken to make sure that they are part of the narrative. Though drastically different films, ‘Visaranai’ might come to your mind while seeing ‘Joker’. Both are about how system can play havoc on the common man with or without his consent. the crux of 'Joker' which alters the protagonist's life itself is such a brilliant idea.
Guru Somasundaram is brilliant as Mannar Mannar. In a role that could be caricatured so easily he masterfully succeeds in not falling a prey. The consistency in his performance throughout the film too stands out. There are two distinct shades for him in the film and the restraint he shows in not making this too obvious through the sort of acting we generally associate with ‘a good performance’ is an absolute delight.
The supporting cast is equally good despite the fact that most of them seem to be non-actors or first timers.
Music is a mainstay in Joker and Sean Roldan is quite a hero on his own in the film. The melodies are soothing but a little sense of pain is always there in the music. This is the mood of the film as well or this is what the music does to the film. The fact that you are not able to conclusively state either the former or latter is proof enough of the quality of music.
Joker sets out with a purpose and achieves it with aplomb. Very few films deliver the message while also keeping the cinematic art form in place. Joker does come very close to achieving this.
Rating : 3.75/5