Until the rumors took off like wildfire, I didn't realize just how much I actually admired Joaquin Phoenix's work, mainly because I had never taken the time to sit down and actually analyze his acting, or whether or not I felt he was an actor that was something of a marvel to me, much like how I felt looking back over Robin Williams' works and realizing just how impactful the man had been to me.
Still, I am not here to inform you of any death but rather that I believe that Joaquin Phoenix would indeed make the best [Doctor Strange](movie:559685), above any other casting I have yet to hear. Similarly, the only other Marvel casting I have taken up arms on has been Evangeline Lily who has the makings to be one of Marvel's beautifully crafted superhero love interests alongside Gwyneth Paltrow, Natalie Portman, Haley Atwell, and Liv Tyler.
To me, there really is no questioning Joaquin's ability to pack emotion into a scene, which can be seen regularly throughout his performances in one of my personal favorites, The Village, and the highly acclaimed Gladiator. Phoenix's ability to convey emotion in a realistic manner with so many layers of thought put into his scenes can grab anyone's heart and suck you right into his feelings.
In the scene above, one can see his levels of fear, love, social responsibility, and frustration all packed into just a few moments in the film. Depth like this, even in parts of Hollywood, can be a commodity that often goes under-appreciated. Even so, emotional acting isn't the only important part of an actor: this kind of acting should build as the conflict slow begins to reach climax.
What we all love about superheroes is their charm, their poise, their charisma, and their confidence. Superheroes are all about finding a character that you can admire in both their struggles and their strong times. Perhaps it's just Joaquin's smooth baritone voice or his stage presence imitation of Johnny Cash, but his work in Walk The Line with co-star Reese Witherspoon might just be the definition of charm.
At this point, the only issues you can have with Mr. Phoenix is that he doesn't look the part in your opinion. However, with the recent revelations of some brilliant fan art of the actor as Doctor Strange (as can be seen at the top of the article), I would hope your mind would have been changed. Still, until the movie rolls around, I doubt anyone could truly be completely happy with any casting of the character.
So far, Marvel Studios hasn't failed us yet. Until they give me reason to doubt, I am completely on board with whoever they choose: Joaquin as Doctor Strange or not. Doctor Strange will definitely be a film to stand out and away from the rest of the studio's more light-hearted and scientifically defined worlds, so perhaps taking a turn down a street with some less than obvious picks for characters could be the way to go.