Music Inside You

It’s wonderful news, at least to me, that Joker has crossed the billion-dollar mark, despite being R-rated and not being released in China (who pays to see our movies more than we do). There’s something about this film I have wanted to talk about since seeing it…

Arthur (who becomes the Joker) dances a lot throughout. This was no accident by the filmmakers, and to my surprise, I understood it before I looked into it. Arthur dances whenever he feels happy. Truly happy.

He and I have this in common.

This is something I’ve only ever told my best friend, in good old best friend fashion. It’s not that I ever wanted it kept secret, it’s just not something I cared to even think about. I only told my best friend because I (at the time, which was 7 years ago) was interested in a girl who loved to dance all the time. I told my best friend that I dance too, but I don’t do it often.

It’s not a sort of reverse-coping mechanism, where I’m not trying to keep something down but am actually trying to release it. No, it’s actually that I love music to an unusual degree. At least, it seems that way to me. I have music inside me. I love what music makes me want to do, and I crave that feeling every minute of every day. Problem is, I can’t feel that at will. I can’t even feel it simply when I listen to music.

It’s only when I feel my troubles have been lifted. When there is nothing weighing me down. It’s those rare, very rare, instances when I think I have nothing to worry about, my relations are all going well, etc.

Again, this is not something I’ve ever wanted to keep secret. I’m not ashamed of it or something, it’s just so infrequent that I almost forget it’s even a trait I have. If I felt truly and completely happy all the time, or even occasionally, everyone in my life would know this about me already… because I’d be dancing all the time nearly everywhere I go.

I love how those kinds of movements make me feel. That envelopment, that looseness… It’s transcendence. I feel beats I’m not even listening to, I feel my body doing things I didn’t even know I knew how to do. On that last thing, I’m completely serious. I can balance myself in the oddest of positions just on my toes, my hand-eye coordination is phenomenal, I can get work done far more quickly and effectively without even trying, and it seems like my cognition even gets enhanced too. I can think so clearly, I get the greatest ideas… This isn’t something I feel in a single moment, like I’m reacting to great news or something. On the rare occasion this happens with me, it lasts hours.

I don’t feel like I’m on Earth anymore. It’s like sprouting wings then flying for the first time.

Anyway, when I looked a bit into the making of Joker, the director described this. He said Arthur “has music inside him” that “only comes out when he’s happy.” This aspect resonated with me so much not just because I am the same way, but even more specifically because neither this fictional character nor I even require music in the moment. It just comes out. We hear and feel this music even in complete silence. In Joker, we the audience hear the music the editors inserted, but that’s actually what it’s like. Nobody in Gotham is playing music whenever Arthur dances, but Arthur still hears it, and we the audience hear it with him. I love that. I’ve never seen anything like this is in a movie before. What a great film.