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Groucho Marxist - Joker (2019) *edit complete*

doggo moon

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Groucho Marxist
running time: 46 minutes

I had mixed feelings about Todd Phillip's Joker during its theatrical run. While I felt the narrative and messaging were pretty clumsy and contextually self-contradicting, the acting and production design kept me engaged and overall it was an entertaining watch.

This edit attempts to streamline the film into a story of class struggle (though a bit of a tongue-in-cheek one) and less of a Scorsese cosplay superimposed onto the Batman universe. Much of what it appears Phillips is trying squeeze in here (themes regarding delusion, romantic fantasies, etc.) has already been done and often more effectively.. i.e. King of Comedy.

We could go on about Marxist theory, or anarchism praxis whatever, but i'm not sure there's enough in the source material to have a meaningful discussion, especially during the climax when (spoiler) the director uses Joker as a mouthpiece for a misguided thesis on how "pc culture is ruining comedy!" We get it Todd, no one wanted a fourth Hangover movie... Sure, there's a critique about how neoliberalism is counterrevolutionary, but its apparent Phillips doesn't possess the emotional or practical toolset to adequately confront those themes either. (redditor voice: you see, Joker represents the lumpenproletariat, an underclass devoid of class consciousness)

Anyway, i made this edit in about a day cause i thought Groucho Marxist was a funny name and wanted to revisit the film in the current climate. Feel free to dm me for viewing link ( ·ω·)ノ

RpoQw7d.png

change list in progress
 

DigModiFicaTion

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doggo moon said:
We could go on about Marxist theory, or anarchism praxis whatever, but i'm not sure there's enough in the source material to have a meaningful discussion, especially during the climax when (spoiler) the director uses Joker as a mouthpiece for a misguided thesis on how "pc culture is ruining comedy!" We get it Todd, no one wanted a fourth Hangover movie... Sure, there's a critique about how neoliberalism is counterrevolutionary, but its apparent Phillips doesn't possess the emotional or practical toolset to adequately confront those themes either. (redditor voice: you see, Joker represents the lumpenproletariat, an underclass devoid of class consciousness)

Just a general reminder to everyone that we are an apolitical forum. Feel free to discuss theories via PM's, but in the forums please keep it focused on narrative structures and video/audio editing. Thanks.
 

doggo moon

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Thanks for the reminder DigModiFicaTion, will keep it focused on narrative structure.

Change List:
  • Added opening prologue of Groucho Marx from an interview on Firing Line with William F. Buckley Jr.: Is the World Funny?
  • Removed romantic subplot with Sophie neighbor entirely.
  • Moved Arthur’s stand up routine (originally after first murder) near the beginning of the film. This now serves to introduce his anxious laughing tick. Cut around Sophie as this was part of their date sequence.
  • Removed subplot regarding Arthur’s quest for a father figure (i.e. fantasy scene with Murray, whole Thomas Wayne/adoption storyline)
  • Cut social worker/Arthur relationship to only their last session. Wasn’t sure why they made a point of presenting the social worker as unlistening besides just to show that “society is unkind” which is already made clear. Also felt like it muddied “cutting social programs” as a cause for Arthur’s psychological decent if those programs were shown as unresponsive in the first place. Removed on-the-nose line “They don’t care about people like you, Arthur… or people like me for that matter”
  • Re-arranged order of mother’s death and Arthur’s first murder. Originally, the murders occur before his mom is hospitalized - now her death acts as part of the catalyst to Arthur’s subway murders.
  • Cut around Arthur suffocating his mother with pillow as result of the Thomas Wayne/adoption storyline. Her death is now ambiguous and occurs the night she’s hospitalized/Arthur is mocked on Murray.
  • Removed instances of inter-violence among lower class characters (Opening assault over sign, Arthur murdering his co-worker). We still elude to Arthur getting jumped, but it’s only referenced by his bruises, his co-worker, or Arthur to his boss. The first time we see Arthur physically beaten is by the Wall Street Boys (this keeps the focus on class)
  • Cut around his mother when Arthur is watching the news about the murders (since this now occurs after his mother’s death)
  • Added reprisal of Claude Boiling’s Temptation Rag to the cop chase bit.
  • Trimmed Murray scenes (removed pre-show introductions, re-cut interview to be less of a film “thesis”) In my confession, this scene is tough. I feel Arthur’s whole monologue here is a little cringey and out of character. Tried to keep the tension while still removing odd moments such as the other guest saying “you can’t joke about that!” or Arthur’s “you decide what’s right or wrong the same way you decide what’s funny and not” 
  • Added new ending track, Joy by Satellite Orchestra. Thought it brought some humor to the end and tied the character arc of Arthur finally finding acceptance in class solidarity.
  • For sake of bookending Groucho Marx opener, added Karl Marx quote to close the film.
  • Removed psychiatric hospital ending.
*edited post now that i know how to make spoiler box
 

asterixsmeagol

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Sounds really intriguing. I enjoyed the movie more than I thought I would, but a trimmed down and focused short film might be better.
 

Jrzag42

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Well heck, this edit was fantastic!
Cutting a two hour film down to fourty five minutes doesn't seem possible, not to mention doing it in a day, but Doggo Moon managed to do it. The narrative flows just fine, there are no noticeable plot holes, there are no abrupt cuts, I'm very impressed.

There were a couple of things that threw me off:
I don't think it was made clear enough that Arthur's mom died, though there's a chance I didn't pay enough attention.
Arthur on the Murray show, preparing to tell a joke, and then telling about the murder felt a bit off, I get what the intention was, but the way I think of it, him doing it may have been funny to him, but I don't think it's the same as telling a joke, or at least with the way he says it. I can't really explain exactly what I mean, it just felt like he was gonna tell a joke and then said something unrelated instead. But really that's just a nitpick, it works fine enough.
This is a perfect streamlined version of the film, it didn't feel like anything was missing anything. I'm no film critic, and I'm bad at interpreting my thoughts, so I can't say for sure if the themes and messages are necessarily clearer this way, or if this is necessarily better than the theatrical version, but I definitely think it's worth checking out.
 

doggo moon

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jrWHAG42 said:
Well heck, this edit was fantastic!
Cutting a two hour film down to fourty five minutes doesn't seem possible, not to mention doing it in a day, but Doggo Moon managed to do it. The narrative flows just fine, there are no noticeable plot holes, there are no abrupt cuts, I'm very impressed.

There were a couple of things that threw me off:
I don't think it was made clear enough that Arthur's mom died, though there's a chance I didn't pay enough attention.
Arthur on the Murray show, preparing to tell a joke, and then telling about the murder felt a bit off, I get what the intention was, but the way I think of it, him doing it may have been funny to him, but I don't think it's the same as telling a joke, or at least with the way he says it. I can't really explain exactly what I mean, it just felt like he was gonna tell a joke and then said something unrelated instead. But really that's just a nitpick, it works fine enough.
This is a perfect streamlined version of the film, it didn't feel like anything was missing anything. I'm no film critic, and I'm bad at interpreting my thoughts, so I can't say for sure if the themes and messages are necessarily clearer this way, or if this is necessarily better than the theatrical version, but I definitely think it's worth checking out.

woah thank you, I appreciate the feedback!

just made some re-edits based on your notes:
yeah, I was worried about that too. playing with adding a flatline sound effect to help clarify.
on the Murray interview: I think you're right that it feels off since the audience was expecting a joke. I put Murray's line "okay, I'm waiting for the punchline" back in (and a few other dialogue tweaks) and it seems to flow a bit better now.
 

TM2YC

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Thread moved to pending review.

Love the edit title :D , I happen to own this record bag:

50120576971_1da27542a3_c.jpg
 

doggo moon

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TM2YC said:
Thread moved to pending review.

Love the edit title :D , I happen to own this record bag:

50120576971_1da27542a3_c.jpg

that bag ✿♥‿♥✿

thanks TM2YC
 

Jrzag42

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This fan edit is officially APPROVED by the Fanedit.org Academy!
 

TM2YC

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Well that was quick!  :) Congratulations. Thread moved to completed.
 
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