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The Joke’s on You: Why Leviathan Needs Joker

October 15th, 2019 | 12 min read

By Michael Shindler

As men require a heaping dose of dreams to reconcile themselves to waking life, so too does the hulking Leviathan of society require its dreams—which are films. This fantastical notion—that films function as society’s dreams—was first heralded by a smattering of early 20th century French avant-garde theorists, but chiefly Jean Epstein, who famously characterized films as “the dream of the machine.” If this psychosocial paradigm has any validity, Joker is an extraordinarily fascinating, albeit disheartening specimen.

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