Ever have a question that runs through your head endlessly? A question that you absolutely have to know the answer to? Like this one: is Joaquin Phoenix left handed?
Joaquin Phoenix is not left handed. For those of us who have seen the recent Joker movie, this answer may leave you a bit confused. Suffice it to say that Joaquin Phoenix is an amazing actor, even when it comes to what hand he uses to write.
Joaquin Phoenix does in fact use his left hand in the movie Joker. However, as a shock to fans around the globe, this isn’t because the actor is left handed. The story behind this is an interesting one but it basically boils down to the fact that Joaquin Phoenix did everything (and we mean everything) to get into character.
Left Handed Writing
If you spend some time online, you’ll see that thousands of fans have contributed to the discussion around whether or not Joaquin Phoenix is left handed. This stems from the movie Joker, in which Joaquin’s character, Arthur Fleck writes with his left hand.
Why would this role entail Joaquin using a different hand to write? Well, research shows that there’s a tenancy for people who suffer from mental illness to be left handed.
There is significant evidence to indicate that left handedness is associated with a likelihood of psychotic disorders. Left handed people are more likely to be depressed. Interestingly, typical mental health treatments might actually make things worse for those who are left handed.
And this research found its way into the Joker movie.
Although other Joker movies all have him using his right hand, director Todd Phillips wanted to take things to the next level by ensuring that Arthur Fleck character’s could be realistic and could perhaps give signs throughout the film of his mental illness.
While sometimes, Joaquin’s character writes with his right hand and uses that hand to fire the gun, extremely observant viewers might notice that this changes throughout the film (as can be seen in his joke book journal).
These shifts take place when Arthur Fleck temporarily uses his left hand during his mental breaks.
Only 10% of the world writes left-handed and while Phillips could have just wanted to make Fleck’s character ambidextrous, the motives behind the use of his left hand actually serve as clues for viewers.
When Joaquin Phoenix writes with his left hand, it lets viewers know that what’s going on is all in Arthur’s head. When he uses his right hand to write or smoke a cigarette or stab someone, the viewer can work out that these things are all happening in the “real world.”
Simply put, the alternation between hands can be viewed as the actor flipping from reality to delusion.
Joaquin Phoenix is Right Handed
While some people have reported that Phoenix is ambidextrous enough to be able to sign autographs using both hands, it’s generally thought that the actor is right-handed. That being said, however, if you picked up on his left-handedness in Joker, it probably made the movie even better for you.