Joaquin Phoenix Dislocating His Knee Does Not an Award-Worthy Performance Make
There is a lot happening surrounding Joaquin Phoenix after his win at the Golden Globes for Joker. A movie that I did not like but that I respect his performance in, Joker has been the talk of Twitter. Literally. If you tweet anything slightly against the movie, angry fans will come and find you, and that’s kind of how a new meme surrounding the movie and Phoenix hurting himself was formed.
Before I get into the injury, I want to talk about the other issue surrounding Phoenix: His reaction to a reporter.
— 2Cool2Blog (@2Cool2BIog) January 6, 2020
I’d also love if everyone defending Joaquin Phoenix would politely leave River Phoenix out of it. Yes, Joaquin Phoenix has anxiety and issues with the press after what happened to his brother, but holding other celebrities (especially women) to different standards isn’t okay.
For example, here are the comments under Phoenix’s brushoff of the reporter versus comments under Jennifer Lawrence’s “rude” antics:
*jennifer lawrence is rude to journalists*
“she’s so rude, she’s not funny, she’s mean, i can’t stand her”
*joaquin phoenix is rude to journalists*
“he’s so authentic and real, he suffers from anxiety so it’s okay to be rude”
this stinks of misogyny pic.twitter.com/BjVDeUeWln
— ً (@timothechalmet) January 7, 2020
That’s not to say that I think praise for Phoenix’s performance is unearned. It’s the same feeling I had towards Rami Malek after Bohemian Rhapsody. I hated the movie, but I liked the performance.
But the bigger issue at large now is not so much Phoenix’s reaction to a reporter, but rather, going back to the idea of his deserving of awards because he “dislocated his knee.” Not only does he not deserve an award just because he accidentally hurt himself, but we should most definitely stop praising unhealthful bodily harm, including body transformations, in film and television as if it isn’t an unhealthy message.
Let’s start first with Phoenix’s own comments on how his weight loss for Joker involved an eating disorder. When I tweeted about this in the past, I was told it was his “process.” As someone who struggles with eating and food and my own body, these kinds of comments and glorification of weight loss/eating disorders is extremely dangerous. Now, Phoenix is not the only one, by far. Christian Bale has done it numerous times (he is one of my favorite actors, but he does it and it is praised over and over again, and we really need to stop it), and then there’s someone like Carrie Fisher and the weight loss that was demanded of her for Star Wars: The Force Awakens that was unnecessary and may have been detrimental to her health.
That’s just the start of it, though. While fans (and critics) alike think the weight-loss transformation is something good, there is now a new layer of “He should win for this personal physical suffering”: his dislocated knee. I literally could not find whether this was even true or not. What happened is a Twitter account that likes Joker posted a video of Joaquin Phoenix, as Arthur Fleck beating someone up, and it looks like he hits his knee on a dumpster. Rookie mistake.
JOAQUIN DISLOCATED HIS KNEE FILMING THIS SCENE IN JOKER, GIVE HIM THE GOLDEN GLOBE AWARD pic.twitter.com/FVJrsulgCA
— lydia ☻︎ (@jokercents) January 5, 2020
From there, the mockery began. Mainly using other actors who did wild things for their craft or even just random jokes thrown in.
the same people who whine about how the Marriage Story argument sucked and was bad acting are falling over themselves to praise Joaquin Phoenix hurting his knee in The Joker. love it https://t.co/sJHdcAIVrg
— the thicc husband & father (@lukeisamazing) January 8, 2020
Me, when people say Joaquin Phoenix deserves an Oscar for starving himself/dislocating his knee instead of Adam Sandler for taking all of his most well known qualities as an actor and honing them in for an electric/mature performance pic.twitter.com/MzhgXvvxta
— Mike Horky (@the8thhorkrux) January 7, 2020
i’m sorry but that tweet about giving joaquin phoenix a golden globe because he dislocated his knee is so stupid like i was born with a broken nose where’s MY golden globe
— font guild founding member (@mcuwaititi) January 7, 2020
I HUNG OFF A CLIFF FOR HOURS TO DO A SCENE WHERE CLARE THOUGHT SHE WAS BRING MURDERED BY A PROTESTANT GIVE ME THE GOLDEN GLOBE AWARD https://t.co/ODbkPT5ahC
— Nicola Coughlan (@nicolacoughlan) January 8, 2020
— jovie (@joviewilky) January 8, 2020
rami malek ate his own vomit, snorted REAL morphine, and hacked into a global organization to destroy corporate greed. give HIM the golden globe award https://t.co/VmpWiqMCkk
— h (@freckledmalek) January 8, 2020
joe keery had to wax his hairy ass chest for two seasons of stranger things, give him the golden globe award https://t.co/FwXEfanXGM
— jessi (@hcrrington) January 7, 2020
— Joshua Twenty TwentRay (@joshuaray) January 8, 2020
— Podcast From Planet Weird (@PlanetWeirdPod) January 8, 2020
Alfie Allen spent months In emotional distress getting beat while strung up on a cross…. give him the golden globe. https://t.co/EYHF3CfHm7
— Attention Seeking Ashley (@aljcosplay) January 7, 2020
BRANDON LEE GOT SHOT AND DIED FOR THE CROW GIVE HIM THE GOLDEN GLOBE https://t.co/XPt6S7YmCk
— Ｂａｂｕ Ｆｒｉｋ.exe ケスだ (@TUOTorronen) January 8, 2020
misha collins had to work for months with a hip that he eventually had to get hip replacement surgery for. give him the golden globe https://t.co/ZcOPtYJpzH
— max | stan the superior winchesters (@maxlovesmisha) January 7, 2020
hayden christensen had to perform george lucas’ dialogue for two films give him the golden globe award https://t.co/ONoNJ4BqAp
— alice (@chadwckbose) January 8, 2020
dylan o’brien injured himself in a car accident when filming the death cure. give him the golden globe award https://t.co/HXLlxiv3zC
— irma (@grangersyouth) January 8, 2020
ROBERT DOWNEY JR. DIED OF AN OVERDOSE WHILE DRIVING BACK HOME IN LESS THAN ZERO WITH HIS BEST FRIENDS ANDREW MCCARTHY AND JAMI GERTZ, GIVE HIM THE GOLDEN GLOBE AWARD https://t.co/I1ddPKFa68
— rachel leishman (@RachelLeishman) January 8, 2020
bill hader pulled “a groin muscle” while running for it ch2, give him the golden globe https://t.co/1oppKor4oJ
— (@zenithchalamet) January 8, 2020
ok and? Andy Samberg literally made Hot Rod. give HIM the Golden Globe for that. https://t.co/0BQTs2lz5s
— Jrue (@UCDaVibes) January 8, 2020
tom holland died while filming infinity war give him the golden globe award https://t.co/lo7fxY7PNh
— jonny | BAFTA NOMINEE FLORENCE PUGH (@mcuridley) January 8, 2020
LEONARDO DICAPRIO SANK TO THE BOTTOM OF THE OCEAN, GIVE HIM THE GOLDEN GLOBE AWARD https://t.co/THwXlAM8zD
— JC (@thottynotsorry) January 8, 2020
pedro pascal hurt his back from carrying the star wars franchise where is his golden globe https://t.co/uae6jQAMl3
— pedro pascal’s stylist (@djarinsdin) January 8, 2020
amy adams had to pretend to be in love with jeremy renner in arrival but okay https://t.co/6gVBb1BtK3
— Laila ☪️ (@anonymouslaila) January 8, 2020
The thing is, I think we should a) stop glorifying performances based on whether or not actors endure physical harm, and b) recognize all the work that an actor puts into their craft.
(image: Warner Bros.)
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