Skip to content
Eye Logo link to homepageEye Film Museum Logo, link to homepage
still Joker (Todd Phillips, US 2019)


Todd Phillips / US, CA, 2019 / 122 min.

Joaquin Phoenix was unanimously praised for his role as Arthur Fleck, the vulnerable, maniacal loner who through a pitiful chain of events would become known as the character of The Joker. The impact of this 'prequel' to the Batman-saga can be in no small part credited to the beautifully dark and minimalistic score by Hildur Guðnadóttir. Before the screening a pre-recorded video-interview by Eye on Sound programmer Thijs Havens with Guðnadóttir will be screened (30 min), conducted especially for this occassion.

Poster joker eye filmmuseum

Hildur Guðnadóttir was no newcomer to Hollywood, thanks to her cello performance in Ryuichi Sakamoto’s score for The Revenant (Alejandro González Iñárritu, 2015) and many other films. Not long after, she received an Oscar for the score she composed for Joker, making history as the first woman ever to win in that category.

Guðnadóttir’s film music is regularly cited as a prime example of the striking shift taking place in the world of film music. For a long time film scores were too often weakened into quasi-interchangeable orchestral music. Now, however, young film composers with guts, with a signature of their own and a disregard of conventions have lately been coming to the fore.

The score for Joker is a shining example of this trend. Bombastic themes are discarded to make room for an abstract, ominous sound design interspersed with trenchant solo cello playing. The score is nonconformist, does not aim to please and is arranged with singular austerity. Guðnadóttir thus single-handedly managed to lift the film, including Joaquin Phoenix’s maniacal role as The Joker, to a higher plane.


This movie contains scenes of violenceThis movie contains foul languagePersons under 16 years must be accompanied by an adult


Todd Phillips

Production year




Original title



122 min.







Part of

Holland Festival 2021

This year, Eye puts the spotlight on Ryuichi Sakamoto, one of the associate artists of the Holland Festival 2021. Sakamoto's latest work Time will premiere during the festival, an unconventional wordless opera he made together with visual artist Shiro Takatani. Eye will organise seven accompanying programmes in June focusing on Sakamoto's illustrious career.

Learn more
Ryuichi Sakamoto © nss (zakkubalan)
still Joker (Todd Phillips, US 2019)
still Joker (Todd Phillips, US 2019)

In collaboration with

logo Holland Festival

Planning on having a drink or a bite to eat? Book online for Eye bar-restaurant.


Current exhibition

  • 20 January — 20 May 2024

    Paravel & Castaing-Taylor

    Cosmic Realism

Films, talks & events

Show everything

for anytime

in all languages

Sort by