Rated R for disturbing and graphic depiction of violent anti-social behavior, sexuality and language.
Directed By: David Fincher
Written By: Jim Uhls
Staring: Edward Norton, Brad Pitt, Helena Bonham Carter, Meat Loaf, Zach Grenier, George Maguire, and Jared Leto
This is your life and it’s ending one minute at a time. -Narrator
Every once in awhile a movie happens that changes your perspective on not just film but even your life. Fight Club was one of those rare films. It simultaneously made you laugh, made you think, and maybe even repulses you in a strange way. There wasn’t a movie made like this before and hasn’t been since. Screaming out in angst the words of Chuck Palahniuk are realized in a new forum to contemplate this mind bending story of self awareness. This movie has grown a cult following over the years and when it was released it was very trendy to “like” it, but the sad thing about Fight Club is a lot of people “liked” it for all the wrong reasons, and because of this some of it’s profound impact has been lost in the last decade.
If there was a film to bring closure to the angst of the 90′s it was Fight Club. The frustrated flannel days were meeting their end, but the fight against all that the generation of grunge supporters reveled against was not at all lost. Fight Club was a cry against all that was later to corrupt the generations of today and without any doubt about it, the soundtrack of The Pixies “Where Is My Mind” closing the film could not have been any more poignant in it’s message.
The violence, the dialogue and the concept of a two sided personality appealed to the obvious viewers who took to the film being “cool” and unquestionably that stuff was pretty cool, but what all those things represented and the deeper complexity brewing below was what really made Fight Club tick and have the longevity to be one of the more important films to mark a generation or time in cinema. The idea that we as a youth were being compromised by focusing on so many “things” that we all “need” took us away from what Man is at the very core. One can’t be defined by the things they own, but by who they are and what they are about. Until you take those things away and look at what is left you can’t really see who you are. This entireideology was somehow conveyed in Fight Club, which was in my thoughts fantastically portrayed in the form of a dark comedy.
This generation is more obsessed with what Fight Club predicted as a future, “the woe of suburbia”. Music reflects it, TV programming reflects it, and consumerism reflects the fact that the newest generation is littered with a group of people obsessed with material things. Technological toys are the defining principles of people, and MTV tells kids who to vote for and what to wear. Theindividual has been replaced by a herd of followers wanting to have everything that television tells them is so important. When Tyler Durden preaches, these were the things he talked about, and whether you agree with him or not, the ideology behind his vision of what was happening to our good country is rather poignant. Crushing economic debt by ridding of all the credit card companies, making people economic equals was a radical thought, but considering what the country is going through at this time, perhaps it was something people should have contemplated maybe a little more seriously.
David Fincher knew what he was doing and no other director could have pulled this film off. That being said, there couldn’t have been two better actors than Brad Pitt and Edward Norton playing the roles of Tyler Durden and The Narrator. With Helena Bonham Carter as the mischievous love intrest adding a strange female perspective, but also a tool to explore the dynamic of Tyler Durden and The Narrator’s relationship was brilliant casting. The reveal at the end suddenly makes each of their names mean something a little more when giving it a repeat viewing, but then the film itself becomes almost a new movie the second and third and hundredth time around. This film doesn’t stop asking questions and doesn’t leave any doors closed to explore. It constantly evolves with your own perspective on the situations and that insane ingenuity is only a small part of the genius it took to construct every aspect of this film.
This film had incredible depths, entertainment value, and a shocking balance of all the elements that make a good movie. Fight Club is without question one of the greatest films ever made, with some of the most extreme concepts, perplexing questions, and moreover a plot that will drive those who are compelled to look further into it than it being a “cool” movie, even though it IS cool. Hands down one of my favorite movies of all time and by far one of the most relevant movies of a generation ending and a new age opening. This is the transition of a lifestyle and ideology of people while still entertaining. What more can you ask for? Guys beating each other up? Check. Buildings exploding? Check. Brad Pitt? Check. Ed Norton? Check. Telling your boss to take a flying leap? Check. A twisted plot so complex in it’s levels of self exploration it never fully meets an end? Check. This pulls out all the stops. Go watch it now. It’s more important today than when it was released.