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Joe the King

            "Joe the King" is one of the most unrelentingly bleak film I've ever watched. The sadness that poor Joe entails makes me feel very sorry for him. The movie is about a little boy who is growing up and attempting to survive in a world without love. Nothing goes right for Joe either. He lives in a dysfunctional family, his father is an alcoholic, he has an overworked mother who is hardly home, and a brother, Mike, who is slightly older then Joe; Joe is a kleptomaniac himself. Every adult Joe meets is either abusive towards him or lets him down in some way or another. Joe develops a mask that occasionally cracks when he reveals feelings of defiance or fear. His life is riddled with responsibilities: school, which he doesn't care about, an illegal job as a dishwasher, which he needs because of his father's continuous unemployment, and worst of all, the wretchedness of his home life. I think the movie "Joe the king" shows what happens when a society lives without love, and how the pressures of the world can destroy a household. When the parents of Joe got married they "loved" each other, but because times were tough and work was stressful, the pressure that built up in the father's life came out when he got home and he would release it on his children by yelling and abusing them, especially Joe. The scene at the very beginning of the movie where we see the first sign that this is an abusive father, was the scene that left me questioning what happened, What happened to Joe over those five years that caused him to turn out the way he did? I think the answer to that question lies in what happened to his family. Because his father was continuously unemployed, Joe was forced to get a job at a restaurant. Joe's brother tried to hide the fact that he was poor and came from an abusive family whereas Joe just didn't care and let the truth be told. For example, when Joe tries to have so-called fun at a roller rink, he can't, because he doesn't know how.

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