Joaquin Phoenix Proves a Point
Sorry folks, unfortunately this isn’t the next page of R&A, but I did want to chime in on the recent reveal of Joaquin’s Phoenix and Casey Affleck’s recent stunt on the celeb-obsessed American public.
While my hypothesis from the get-go was that they were yanking our chains, Joaquin was able to keep a public persona in which he quit acting, became a rapper, grew an epic beard, and fell into self-destructive pattern of celebrity cliches that were a reality for most people, for about 2 years. That’s a long time to pull a stunt like that, particularly when falling into the downward spiral usually sparks interest in your pathetic demise from the tabloids and piss rags that folks buy at the grocery store checkout.
While I admit I haven’t seen I’m Still Here yet, the very idea that Phoenix struck out at everything wrong with pop culture media is, in my mind, one of the greatest stunts of the 21st century. Forget the feat of being able to avoid detection in a world that’s constantly connected 24/7, where little can go unnoticed by any member of the public. Forget that the man was able to stay in character amidst a legendary appearance on Letterman (above).
The triumph here is that he was able to strip the pathetic paparazzi and vicarious pop-media down to their core, showing them off for what they are: connoisseurs of human disparity. The world loves to watch a hero fall, be them actors or athletes; we, as a species, get off at any chance to see one of our kin that’s in the spotlight dwindle to nothing. This is why Britney Spears was most popular amongst her notorious breakdown. This is why Sandra Bullock has so much public sympathy. This is why everybody hates Derek Jeter. As such, these members of the media make their payday from sensationalizing it all.
By faking the entire thing, Phoenix and Affleck effectively gave one giant middle finger to all of them, exposing them for the sadistic morons they are. I’m drinking to you both tonight.