The Joker has grow to be some of the enigmatic characters in not simply comedian e book historical past however film historical past as properly. Given that the film model of the character has grow to be so in style and a number of other actors have gained Oscars for taking part in him, many actors may take into account enjoying The Joker as a profession spotlight, as if enjoying a Shakespearean lead like Hamlet or Macbeth.

RELATED: 10 Bizarre Facts About The Actors Who’ve Played The Joker

Audiences are at all times excited to see what a brand new actor will carry to such an iconic function as no two performances are fairly the identical. From Jack Nicholson to Jared Leto, there are is an array of cinematic interpretations of the character, however which Joker film is taken into account to be greatest by critics? The overview aggregator website Rotten Tomatoes might maintain the definitive reply to the query.

Updated on July 14th, 2021 by Mark Birrell: As far as comedian e book heroes and their villains go, Batman and The Joker are maybe probably the most well-known each on and off the web page. Batman motion pictures have conquered the best highs at each the field workplace and the awards circuit, with Joaquin Phoenix’s Oscar-winning flip as The Joker proving that the Dark Knight would not even want to look with a view to get a billion-dollar success. It could be even argued that the Clown Prince of Crime has grow to be a much bigger draw than Bats himself. But the character’s historical past on display stretches far past simply live-action interpretations, and the most effective motion pictures with The Joker are among the lesser-known ones, in line with Rotten Tomatoes.

12 Honorable Mention: Suicide Squad (2016) – 26%

Jared Leto's Joker in a straitjacket

● Available on HBO Max 

Coming off the heels of Heath Ledger’s iconic, Oscar-winning efficiency, there was a number of curiosity in seeing what Jared Leto would do along with his iteration of the character. Suicide Squad informed the story of a gaggle of villains, together with Harley Quinn, Deadshot, and others, who get teamed as much as combat the otherworldly powers of Enchantress.

Jared Leto’s efficiency was controversial, which included him usually growling and being lined with tattoos and a mouth grill. Joker had a way more integral function within the film, however studio interference led to him getting largely lower out and what stays of the function feels pointless. Despite being panned by critics, the film was an unlimited hit and a Joker-less sequel, The Suicide Squad, is due out quickly.

11 Honorable Mention: The Killing Joke (2016) – 39%

Joker clutching cardboard cutout of Batman

● Available on Netflix

Based on some of the in style Batman graphic novels of all time, The Killing Joke was the animated movie adaptation that featured the voices of basic Batman: The Animated Series actors Kevin Conroy as Batman and, after all, fan-favorite Mark Hamill as The Joker.

The basic story particulars The Joker’s plan to torment Commissioner Gordon, whereas additionally displaying flashbacks to the villain’s twisted origin. The movie obtained blended critiques from critics and audiences who praised the voice performing however closely criticized the pointless addition of recent story parts, particularly with reference to Batgirl.

10 Joker (2019) – 68%

Joaquin Phoenix's Joker in elevator

● Available on HBO Max 

Following Heath Ledger’s Oscar-winning portrayal of The Joker, Joaquin Phoenix won his own Oscar for playing the character, albeit a really completely different model. Joker tells the origin story of the Clown Prince of Crime, nonetheless, it takes a extra life like route. Instead of adapting his comedian e book origin, Joker forgoes many of the comedian e book parts to inform its personal story.

In this model, the Wayne household is portrayed unsympathetically as elitists, and The Joker is commonly extra of a misunderstood outcast. For the movie, Phillips clearly took inspiration from Scorsese classics like Taxi Driver and King of Comedy. Despite the a lot darker and life like material than Batman film followers are used to, the film was an enormous box-office hit.

9 Batman (1989) – 71%

Jack Nicholson's Joker on float in front of his balloon

● Available on HBO Max 

Despite all of the award glory Heath Ledger and Joaquin Phoenix’s portrayals have obtained, Jack Nicholson’s Joker remains to be maybe probably the most iconic film model of the character. The movie stars Michael Keaton as Batman and tells the hero’s origin story however as audiences found from the opening credit, the place Nicholson obtained top-billing, that is the Joker’s film. From there, Batman tries to cease The Joker from poisoning Gotham City.

He’s a commanding presence who even overshadows the title character. Batman was an unlimited hit and the start of the modern-day superhero film and, although there have been many Jokers, and shall be many extra, audiences shall be having fun with Nicholson’s basic efficiency for years to come back.

8 Zack Snyder’s Justice League (2021) – 71%

Jared Leto's Joker in Knightmare world looking at camera in Justice League: The Snyder Cut

● Available on HBO Max 

Despite not being within the much-maligned theatrical release of Justice League, Jared Leto bought an opportunity at redemption when he took half in a brand new scene for the 4-hour Justice League director’s lower that mirrored Zack Snyder’s true imaginative and prescient.

RELATED: 10 Biggest Differences Between Zack Snyder’s Justice League And The Original

Leto seems as The Joker in a single scene that takes place in a nightmarish apocalypse, usually known as the Knightmare Future, the place Batman has truly teamed up with Joker for a plan to redeem the timeline. Gone are the tattoos and mouth grill, and Batman and Joker sq. off in a very compelling dialog that delves into their darkish previous collectively. Fans had been significantly extra supportive of Leto’s efficiency this time round,  along with his look being one of many largest speaking factors concerning the widely-publicized movie.

7 Birds Of Prey (2020) – 79%

Joker tattooing someone in Birds of Prey

● Available on HBO Max 

Despite being titled Birds of Prey, this film largely focuses on Harley Quinn with Margot Robbie, as soon as once more, proving to audiences this was the function she was born to play. In the movie, Harley breaks up with The Joker and groups up with the Birds of Prey to tackle a brand new villain, Black Mask, played by Ewan McGregor with fans and critics calling him one of the DCEU’s best villains yet.

Critics and audiences beloved Margot Robbie’s efficiency from Suicide Squad however did not get pleasure from Jared Leto’s Joker in that exact film; so regardless of being an integral a part of this movie’s again story, he is by no means heard and solely seen from behind in a single scene. The filmmakers appeared to distance themselves from the Jared Leto-Joker till Zack Snyder gave him a second probability in his lower of Justice League.

6 Batman (1966) – 79%

Cesar Romero's Joker smiling to someone off-camera in the 1966 Batman movie

● Available for buy on Prime Video

Before Jack Nicholson took on the long-lasting function, the one live-action portrayal of Joker recognized to audiences was Cesar Romero’s from the 1960s Adam West Batman TV show. Like every little thing in regards to the present, his efficiency is over-the-top and campy, a mirrored image of the character from the comedian’s Golden Age. Famously, Romero had a mustache he refused to shave so if viewers look carefully, they’ll see his Joker make-up is painted over it.

The present ran from 1966 to 1968 and Romero performed Joker in 22 episodes and reprised the function within the big-screen film. In the film, Joker groups up with Penguin, Catwoman, and The Riddler to dehydrate the United Nations Security Council. As that plot description suggests, the film sticks carefully to the present’s campy nature and was a giant hit amongst followers.

5 Batman: Mask Of The Phantasm (1993) – 84%

Joker looking over his shoulder in Mask Of The Phantasm

● Available on HBO Max 

Coming off the wildly in style ’90s animated sequence, Batman: Mask of the Phantasm considerations Batman investigating a mysterious vigilante who’s murdering mobsters. The Joker comes into play late within the film when Batman deduces that Joker is the vigilante’s subsequent sufferer.

RELATED: Top 10 Animated Batman Films, Ranked According To Their IMDb Score

Originally supposed to go straight to video, Warner Bros determined to release it to theaters the place it flopped. However, critics and audiences beloved it and, over time, many take into account this to be the most effective of the theatrically launched Batman motion pictures, praising its themes, rating, performances from Conroy and Hamill, in addition to its depiction of the Batman origin story.

4 The Lego Batman Movie (2017) – 90%

Lego Joker looking off camera in The Lego Batman Movie

● Available on HBO Max 

DC Comics characters have been a staple of LEGO toys for a few years, so it made sense to show that recognition right into a film. Following the success of The LEGO Movie which featured Batman and a number of other different DC comics characters, Warner Bros. launched The LEGO Batman Movie with Will Arnett reprising his function as Batman, doing a pseudo-Michael Keaton impression.

The film acts as not only a Batman story but additionally a tongue-in-cheek parody of every little thing Batman. It was an enormous field workplace hit and a sequel was deliberate however the acquisition of the LEGO franchise by Universal Pictures from DC’s attached production studio, Warner Bros., ended that.

3 Batman Beyond: Return of the Joker (2000) – 91%

Joker in Batman Beyond Return of the Joker

● Available on HBO Max 

The DC Animated Universe film Batman Beyond: Return of the Joker is a notable look of the villain for quite a lot of causes, not least the cuts that had been made to the film, leading to censored and uncut versions of it being launched. The largest distinction being the Joker’s loss of life scene, which was sanitized within the authentic model.

According to IGN, the slicing sparked fan petitions to carry again the footage, making it an fascinating precursor to the scenario that Zack Snyder confronted concerning his authentic–and way more violent–lower of Justice League. As in that case additionally, the restored footage proved to be a giant success, with the film being ranked up with among the greatest Batman motion pictures of all time by each followers and critics due to its distinctly disturbing story and one other sensible rendition of the Joker by Mark Hamill.

2 Batman: The Dark Knight Returns, Part 2 (2013) – 94%

● Available on HBO Max 

A considerably completely different type of Joker than the one seen within the DC Animated Universe, this model of the character will get straight to their murderous aspect and is in a lot bloodier scenes. Adapted from Frank Miller’s iconic comedian of the identical identify, The Dark Knight Returns is an appropriately violent and gritty tackle Batman and the unusual world that he inhabits.

Voice actor Michael Emerson nonetheless brings loads of the playful type that different Jokers, like Mark Hamill, had established so properly, however is frighteningly intense of their rivalry with the Caped Crusader, leading to one other–and way more graphic–animated loss of life scene for the villain. It was this unwavering faithfulness in director Jay Oliva’s adaptation that, partly, helped it to grow to be some of the highly-ranked Batman motion pictures ever, with Part 1 of the movie incomes a 100% rating on Rotten Tomatoes additionally. It must be famous that the Joker additionally seems in Part 1 however to not the identical extent that they do in Part 2.

1 The Dark Knight (2008) – 94%

Heath Ledger's The Joker standing in middle of street in The Dark Knight

● Available on HBO Max and Hulu

Not many followers thought anybody may ever prime Jack Nicholson’s iconic efficiency as The Joker however regardless of preliminary fan trepidation, the late Heath Ledger proved all of them incorrect along with his disturbing and haunting portrayal. Unlike most superhero motion pictures that function villains attempting to take over the world, Ledger’s Joker tries to deprave individuals from inside.

The Dark Knight took a grounded method to Batman that was layered, wealthy, and left audiences with extra to consider afterward than most superhero motion pictures do. For his wonderful and distinctive portrayal, Ledger gained a posthumous Oscar. Of all of the on-screen Jokers, Ledger’s holds a particular place as followers really feel robbed of the chance to see him play the character once more.

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