Joker highest-grossing NC16 film here

The comic book movie Joker continues to set new records for a film rated NC16. It has just become the highest-grossing movie in Singapore with that classification.

As of Tuesday, it has earned $5.355 million, beating the record set by the NC16-rated South Korean zombie flick Train To Busan (2016), which earned $5.350 million.

Joker, which stars Joaquin Phoenix in the title role, tells the origin story of the villainous character who appears in DC comics and films. It has the strictest classification so far for a DC title.

Films with an NC16 classification bar those below the age of 16 from entry.

During its first weekend from Oct 3 to 6, Joker collected $1.89 million across 101 screens here, setting an opening weekend box-office record for an NC16-rated movie.

The movie is still showing on 40 screens island-wide. Its NC16 advisory from the Infocomm Media Development Authority warns of "some violence and nudity".

Despite its age restrictions, it has so far made roughly half the Singapore take of the $9.7 million earned by Aquaman (2018), the highest-grossing DC title to date.

The film's gross stacks up well against other superhero films aimed at an older crowd, a feat made more remarkable by how it lacks the eye-candy special effects of such films.

Marvel superhero films with an M18 rating have included Deadpool (2016), which earned $6.3 million; and Logan (2017), which took in $5.2 million.

A spokesman for distributor Warner Bros said: "We note from audience responses that this is a well-made movie with compelling performances. Joker as a character and its themes have struck a chord with the everyday man. It's a moving cinematic experience that is riding on strong word-of-mouth."

John Lui

A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on October 24, 2019, with the headline 'Joker highest-grossing NC16 film here'. Print Edition | Subscribe