Fight Club: Review

August 4, 2014 12:14 pm

As a pack of burly, restless men roll their necks and crack their knuckles, Brad Pitt’s Tyler Durdren utters the immortal lines, “The first rule of Fight Club is, you do not talk about Fight Club…The second rule of Fight Club is, you do not talk about Fight Club.” You can be sure after watching this film you’ll be breaking both these rules as talking about Fight Club will become the only thing you can do.

This two and a half hour film is directed by David Fincher, based on the book by Chuck Palahniuk of the same name and stars Edward Norton, Brad Pitt and Helena Bonham Carter. Edward Norton is your frustrated, everyday human being, working in an office doing the same thing day in-day out and not having slept for months, known simply as the Narrator. Brad Pitt is the philosophical and chaotic Tyler Durdren, whose belief it is to live in absolute anarchy with no rules or regulations, (Russell Brand?) and let life throw you where it wants. The two meet and unite in their need to gain something more out of life and create, you guessed it, Fight Club.

The direction of this film is something to behold, David Fincher perfectly understands the balance of gritty nihilism and warped humour in Chuck Palahniuk’s novel. For all intents and purposes, the film is a very black comedy, even though having been criticized for its unflinching portrayal of violence. One would think critics would be able to infer a film called Fight Club would indeed contain harrowing scenes of people being beaten to a bloody pulp with their bare knuckles and skin-headed men threatening to castrate you…sort of a given isn’t it? However, saying the film Fight Club is just about violence is like saying The Lord of the Rings is just about hiking- it’s a big part of the film but not by any means  the only part. Fincher uses techniques such as breaking the forth wall and voice over to try and connect with us as an audience and ultimately get the nihilistic message across. Some films try and insinuate their ideologies subtly and with a great deal of restraint, as though their afraid of being too controversial and offending the audience. Fight Club is a film with ideologies, only instead of suggesting them to you, it beats you over the head with them and continues to do so until you’re a quivering and bloody wreck on the floor. As Tyler sprouts off memorable quotes about how as a society we have become obsessed with materialistic thing, which is holding us back of true enlightenment you can’t help but think that the guy has a point. All the while he’s talking to you, an unapologetic onslaught of criticism of how you’ve been living, if you understand and appreciate this film you’ll feel like every time Tyler says “You are not a beautiful and unique snowflake,” or “This is your life, and its ending one minute at a time,” he’s really saying “fu*k you.” If you find yourself being offended by this film you’ll still get a strong sense of “fu*k you,” you just won’t know why.

fight club review

The acting on all three actor’s sides is nothing short of outstanding. Edward Norton pulls of the part of a sleepless cooperate worker as if it was what God put him on earth to be. Helena B Carter’s performance as the sexy psycho who gets in-between them still stands as one of her best in her career. Brad Pitt is the clear driving force of this film, giving a blistering and explosive turn as the man that every guy thinks he is, although the film doesn’t just rest on his chiselled shoulders. There are films that are carried either by an actor when the direction fails, or the atmosphere through cinematography and soundtrack when wooden performances are given. Fight Club is a movie in which every component of the film feels like it could have carried its own film, and being that their all in the same one, makes for a pretty first class movie.

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