Fight Club
USA, Germany
Drama, Thriller, Mystery
IMDB rating:
David Fincher
Edward Norton as The Narrator
Brad Pitt as Tyler Durden
Helena Bonham Carter as Marla Singer
Meat Loaf as Robert 'Bob' Paulson
Zach Grenier as Richard Chesler
David Andrews as Thomas
George Maguire as Group Leader
Eugenie Bondurant as Weeping Woman
Christina Cabot as Group Leader
Christie Cronenweth as Airline Attendant
Tim De Zarn as Inspector Bird
Storyline: A ticking-time-bomb insomniac and a slippery soap salesman channel primal male aggression into a shocking new form of therapy. Their concept catches on, with underground "fight clubs" forming in every town, until an eccentric gets in the way and ignites an out-of-control spiral toward oblivion.
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File Size 1636 Mb
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Maybe Golf Can Fill The Void!!
It is nice to have all the material accoutrement of a thriving, cosmopolitan guinea pig. You are raptured by consumerism, which includes owning several hundred pounds of Scandinavian furniture.You have a precocious infatuation for a white collar title, and your lackluster, extra curricular activities have dictated that you mollycoddle someone with testicular cancer!! As enticing as all of this sounds, you know what sparks your interest even more, BEATING THE CRAP OUT OF SOMEONE!! (I have been underemployed for over eight years now, I am all ears!!) What do you really want out of life? Recognition at the Neanderthal level, or, to be another citified anonymity? The former, of course!! Brad Pitt conveys his message to Edward Norton very convincingly, and now, the trick is to spread the good news, but, remember rules one and two, you are not allowed to talk about it, and, you are not allowed to talk about it!! How do you persevere under such a deranged set of circumstances? Yes!! Boredom constitutes a first rate felony. Fighting to a near death represents an exuberance that has titillated Edward Norton's character to a personal Nirvana!! Dangerously convoluted logic is the ultimate spirituality. You have experienced excruciating chemical pain, someone torched your condo because they want to get to know you a little better, you got fired because you always have blood stains on your clothes, you want to blow up a credit card centralized information building complex, and sex has not been this sensational since seventh grade!! Nobody said that this was a family oriented film!! The aggregate depravity for all of the characters in the movie transcends a diversified experimentation with needless destruction, their devotion to the non-conventional is a little too difficult to comprehend!! What does anybody really accomplish by going this route anyway? Capitualation to the bizarre? This movie's charades of insurrection are exhilarating to the clinically demented (Otherwise known as the fight club) The less I know, the better off I will be I think!! Banalities pertinent to the Bourgeousie have brazenly threatened this bevy of belligerent overgrown boys who wish to brandish their high levels of testosterone... So Now!! Life is one big boxing ring!! This is a potpourri of apocalyptic misgivings which are socially perverse!! How do you empathize with any of this?... You don't!! This website has ranked this movie the 31st best film out of the top 250 ever made.... To concur with these findings would be tantamount to indulging the character that Brad Pitt played, to the nth degree!! The psychopathic rumination involved in all of these felonious antics are even more repugnant than the eating habits of an alpaca!!! It is truly indicative of human nature to favor the form of fruition which is pecuniary, their form of fruition deals with societal malcontent and mutilation!! The resonating agitation, which serves as an inspiration to everyone in this movie, is commensurate with the film "Clockwork Orange"!!! Both films possess a ruthless determination to establish an adamant,counter-culture militancy with a bunch of immature misfits!! The macabre actions to both of these movies signify a heinous non-justification which is pertinent to everything!!! This is not what the phrase "Change your sedentary lifestyle" means!!! There are other recreational diversions out there, maybe golf can fill the void!! As far as unprecedented creativity goes "Fight Club" gets a resoundingly perfect ten!!! Overall, however, for "Fight Club" to be ranked the 31st best movie ever produced, I don't know, I really just do not know about that one at all!!
It doesn't get much better than this
Similar in idea to 'American Beauty' but certainly not in style or content this bleak look at underground culture and the spiritual redemption it brings is easily one of the most intelligent films I've ever seen. Directed by the same man who brought us the superb 'The Game' this is another film which you'll have to see more than once to truly understand. Focusing on sad white-collar, middle-class Norton whose only real dream in life is to own all the contents of an IKEA catalogue it follows him through a chance meeting with charismatic stranger Pitt and the unfortunate events which conspire to draw them together. After a nights hard drinking they start a friendly-ish scrap which is viewed by a couple of others and from that small acorn a mighty oak called Fight Club grows. This is the point around which the whole film revolves with Norton and Pitt forming an underground club which draws more and more disillusioned young men to join it. Based on firm 'Queensbury Rules' it is a cathartic if bloody way to spend your night. Eventually as it becomes a huge operation Pitt, the de facto leader, moves it up a gear and creates his own cult from this secret society. This is where the film becomes brilliant and the twist near the end is magnificent, better even than the much talked about 'The Sixth Sense'. It just has so much to say about things: the emasculation of an entire generation of young men ("No great war to fight, no great depression"), the growing isolation we all feel from one another and the need to find something to draw us back together and most importantly, the power of an exciting, challenging idea and it's fermentation into cultism. However, where many films would just say 'This is a bad thing' 'Fight Club' doesn't. It is more a condemnation of a materialistic society which has forgotten about a large section of itself. You can empathise with these men completely, even when they band together against this uncaring society that has reared them to be something their instincts don't understand. It's as close to genius as you'll get and one film you'll talk about and think about for days.
Modern Take on the Film Noir
Fight Club is one of those movies that has to be watched several times to see all of the small allusions to the twist that comes at the end of the second act of the movie. While I have only seen the movie once so far, I think I will make it my mission at some in the future to find more of these small hints left by the director David Fincher. I had caught a few after the plot twist was revealed by remembering key details, but I feel there are more that I have missed.

Fight Club revolves around an unnamed narrator played by Edward Norton whose insomnia is affecting his life tremendously, to the point that he goes to different random support groups just to cry it out and get some much-needed sleep. However, after a woman named Marla Singer (Helena Bonham Carter) starts going to the support groups too, the narrator is unable to get the sleep he needs again, to which point he meets a man named Tyler Durden (Brad Pitt) on an airplane. After the narrator's condo is blown up, he moves in with Tyler, eventually starting a "Fight Club" in the basement of a local bar where men emasculated by modern society can vent through beating each other up. After a while, the Club starts to commit acts of vandalism against capitalist and materialistic objects throughout the city. Eventually, the Club is taken over by Tyler, who turns it into Project Mayhem, which the narrator does not approve of. Tyler disappears, leading the narrator to follow him around the world where he keeps bumping into people part of Fight Club/Project Mayhem, where he realizes he is Tyler Durden, an alter ego created when he falls asleep from insomnia. Trying to stop "Tyler," who is going to blow up all of the financial institutions in the city, the narrator is unsuccessful and the movie ends with Marla (who plays a minor role as "Tyler's" love interest) and the narrator, now Tyler watching the explosions of the skyscrapers from a construction site.

One of the most interesting aspects about Fight Club is its relationship to much older "film noirs" of the 1940s. The lighting in the movie is an obvious example, with most of the movie in a high contrast state of the bright characters against a dark background. Most of the film takes place at night or indoors with minimal lighting coming from natural sources, the film is very expressionist in this regard. Fincher wants us, the audience, to see how the light looks, the contrasts, the rich blacks and grays, the muted colors of most of the cast, except for Tyler. The film is like this for the entire film, a dark, seedy underworld only exposed once the sun goes down and the artificial lighting humanity has created turns on. Shadows are engulfing, threatening to steal some of the characters from the scenes, disappearing from the film. Colors stand out in the film, Tyler's flamboyant clothing sticking out the most in the frame, almost popping out of the otherwise dark and muted movie. Every scene without Tyler is much drabber, the narrator's work is a good example of this, the extreme amount of white, gray, and brown in these scenes show how boring and mundane the narrator's life is without Tyler, the man who keeps the narrator entertained and on his toes.

Another aspect of Fight Club, also connected to film noirs is the anti-materialistic view the film has, along with the air of mystery connected to Tyler and Project Mayhem. Throughout the second and third acts, Fight Club/Project Mayhem has a very clear anti- materialist and capitalist stance, showing continued vandalism against expensive neighborhoods, billboards, store displays, commercial art, chain stores and restaurants, and financial institutions. The film ends with the destruction of several credit card and banking companies to drive this stance home. Film noirs of the 40's also took this stance most of the time, the victims and perpetrators almost always rich, trying to become rich, powerful, trying to become powerful, married, cheated, jealous, or some combination thereof. The acts of violence in those films always had some ulterior or revenge motive, they were not random. The detectives or protagonists of these films were disillusioned by these problems, immune to the trials and tribulations of the cases they were working. Additionally, the mystery aspect of both also is important to both Fight Club and film noirs. Fight Club's mystery is almost hidden from the audience until the end of the second act when Tyler disappears, the fact their is a mystery at all is not totally apparent, but there is one, with a multitude of clues along the way that lead to that conclusion. Film noirs also have mysteries, but they are usually much more straightforward and obvious in existence, most film noirs, if not all, are crime-based, the mystery of "whodunnit" the driving force behind the plot. Fight Club and film noirs are very similar movie types, with Fight Club being a more modern film noir.

Fight Club's mystery may not be apparent for a lot of the film, but when the movie is rewatched, a lot of elements early on clue into what the solution to the mystery is. Fight Club, a modern- day film noir brings the decades-old genre to a new generation of moviegoers, exposing them to the lighting style and ideas that the original film noirs had, with a more modern message and style.
It's not the concept, it's the way the film presents it
Fight Club is that one film you always hear about in colleges and universities, hailed as some sort of 'stick it to the man rebellion' story with all these pretentious meanings that apparently need to be analyzed in great depth to the point where I can't start a conversation about films without hearing Fight Club come up at least once. Pseudo-intellectuals, perverts, frat boys and emos all get obsessed with this one like moths to a flame. Of course, it would be the most spoiled, coddled and secure of society's demographic that enjoy Fight Club because they say it speaks so much to the hurt and anger they apparently experience on a day-to-day basis. I'm sure they'd change their tune and perhaps value humanity over themselves more if they'd grown up in earlier eras, but that's getting rather off-topic.

Fight Club is not a terrible film. It has interesting characters, a decent plot and it follows the original book very well. The soundtrack is dated, the themes are dated, the dialogue is vulgar simply for the sake of being vulgar, and the entire thing as a whole is just trying way too hard to appeal to a certain type of entitled, self-absorbed and immature Generation X/ Millennial crowd (although really I think films are subjective and can be enjoyed by anyone). Fight Club is offensive in every sense of the word, disgustingly crass at times, weird, overly long, and yet I still liked it - but I think it's incredibly overrated for what it is, and I don't think the viewers of it really seem to grasp the full idea it was trying to put out there.

The film is more or less a very nihilistic portrayal of a young man rebelling against modern corporate capitalism and society in general by forming an underground fight club with his SPOILER ALERT!!! imaginary friend and alter-ego Tyler Durden. Durden is a character, but at the same time an embodiment of everything bad, wasteful, annoying, volatile, cruel, narcissist and utterly pointless albeit intellectual that the main character himself is putting out into the world by his own attitude. Anarchy and rebellion, and the aftermath of them, remains one of the biggest themes in Fight Club alongside being an entertaining comedy. However, many viewers of the film just pick up on the vulgar one-liners about women and masturbation and sex, the heavy violence and Tyler's selfish view that humans exist to please themselves, not to care about others, and that the world, everything and everyone in it is just a game to be played. Viewers of Fight Club I've noticed retain the idea that if you show emotion, compassion, pity, sadness or kindness, you're an overly sensitive baby. "Real men" cause chaos, have sex constantly, swear their mouths off, go out of their way to offend others and don't give a damn about anyone else but #1. And naturally, when the main character grows up and matures slightly in the end, people find this confusing. Basically, the main character thought he knew how cruel and ugly the world was, but he was just a bored kid and a hypocrite. In fact, the majority of young adults are hypocrites who think the world revolves around them and their views. I was that way when I was that age, too. I went through a "pro-pollution" phase where I littered on purpose and refused to recycle. Why? Just to stir up trouble. I went through a goth phase where I wore black lipstick and thick black eye makeup to make a panda bear green with envy. Why? Just for shock value and to tick off my teachers. I went through an emo phase, cutting my arms with plastic cutlery and dying my hair black with pink streaks, listening to depressing music and whining about being depressed, while the popular blonde cheerleader sitting in the desk next to mine really WAS suicidal and it went totally unnoticed. Why? Because I was too wrapped up in my own teenage angst garbage to bother helping anyone or anything else. I wanted attention, I wanted to be noticed, but looking back on it a few years later, I realize how insignificant it all is. All teenagers are dumb. I have never come across an intelligent teenager. I've come across many intellectual teenagers, but not intelligent ones. Durden is exactly the figure most teenagers, teenage guys and college guys especially, emulate.

...Okay, that's really getting repetitive now. Like the films 'Donnie Darko' and 'A Clockwork Orange', I think the themes of chaos, nihilism and anarchy are important, but Fight Club is so overrated for what it is. How it has such a high rating over films like 'The Killing Fields' and 'Threads', I'll never understand. Reviewers keep raving about its aesthetics and its depth, but it's no more deep than many other films. ANY film with a social commentary is considered "deep". Fight Club I think just hit the world at the right time, plus it's making a comeback for many nostalgic hipsters, so it will definitely continue to be highly regarded for many years to come, which is not necessarily a bad thing, yet Fight Club shares what, exactly, with the world? Young adults are jerks? Have I missed some vital bit of info to make Fight Club so popular and beloved, or what?
Classic Fincher
You will be gripped from beginning to end by this masterpiece of film making. A great screenplay and fantastic cast. The depth of Norton's character and acting ability is shown is this film that is complement by Pitt's charismatic performance as the soap salesman. If you wanted a movie with a twist, watch this film.
A feast of thoughts
I am not some professional movie critics, but someone who is fond of watching films. I have seen hundreds of suspense films, but Fight Club is the best among them. Some people may say that the Mulholland Drive is the most famous, and I agree, but the Fight Club is definitely the deepest suspense film. Trust me, as long as you could finish watching this film, the feast of thoughts will absolutely impress you.

The story starts with an insomnic car recycler, Jack, who attended several benevolent societies in order to have a good sleep. Occasionally Jack meets a woman called Marla, who attends the same societies but has no physical injuries, just like Jack. So finally they shared the attendances to benevolent societies. Tyler, the soap dealer and the unruly man whom Jack meets on the plane, steps into Jack's life. Jack's home was destroyed by the explosion of natural gas and all his favorite furniture vanishes. Jack moved to Tyler's home on paper street and after a while, they organized the fight club. After a series of "terrorism" activities, this club is all over the country, which becomes a sheer crime organization. During this process, the relationships between Jack, Tyler, Marla and other fight club members become complex, and after several conflicts, Tyler decides to explode twelve buildings, and Jack determines to stop him. And eventually, Jack realized that Tyler was one of his personalities and killed Tyler by shooting at himself. In the last scene, Jack and Marla stand together and watch the collapse of those buildings outside. It is the shallowest meaning the film shows to audience.

With the ridiculous actions, decisions, principals and characteristics, this film gives people a sense of absurdity. So audience mainly concludes them as the results motivated by the mental issue Jack is suffering from. However, when you deeply study this film, you will find some interesting things.

Firstly, the personalities and the fight club. Is it possible for such a great organization with great population governed by Jack individually? Or is it logical that by exploding the buildings, people's deposits will turn to none? A scene when Jack goes into the bar, there is no one in it, but two seconds later when the camera shifts to the same scene, there is a barman standing right there. So is it possible that the fight club was Jack's imagination? Or is it possible that everyone in the club is Jack's personality, it's just some of them have names, like Bob, while others don't have? It is worth thinking.

Secondly, the explosion. When the smiling face depicted by a explosion happens to a building in West Franklin, does it look like the sticker besides Tyler's phone in his house? The building where Jack fights with Tyler is right on Franklin Street, and it seems similar to the exploded building. And the scene of the explosion looks very like the scene which Jack's home is destroyed, so is it possible that all of the explosions are all the same?

Thirdly, the identity of Marla. It seems totally impossible that Marla shows up in a testicular cancer benevolent society without anyone's rejection. What's more, the dressing and behavior of Tyler and Marla looks always similar: cigarettes and sunglasses, and sometimes the same clothes. On the walls outside Marla's apartment reads many "myself" and "I like myself", which also indicates something. One classic sentence Jack says is like "Marla and Tyler never show up together". Thus, whether Marla is real or not is worth considering.

Fourthly, the street's name. Tyler's window-less house is on Paper Street, and the people who have ever been to the house include: Tyler, Jack, Marla and other club members. We already know that those are all the characters imagined by Jack, or Jack's personalities, and no one else has ever been to the house. With all the information, can we indicate that even the house is Jack's imagination?

Other clues including the yin and yang desks, the death of Bob, the sentences about cancers, the accidents and the poet of "Worker bees can leave, even drones can fly away, the queen is their slave" all leads to the answer that Jack is the "queen", while others, even including his furniture, are all his personalities -- the worker bees and drones.

At the end of the film, when Jack gets rid of his anti-personality - - Tyler and stands with his kind personality -- Marla, watching the collision of buildings outside, I think that Jack actually dies. But anyway, since this film has a lot of clues and confusing scenes, there definitely are many perspectives to explain, and my analysis is just one of them.

Maybe this film has some mistakes that could not be explained, but as long as the director concludes them as Jack's imagine, they all make senses. That's why I like it, not sheer perfect, but turns every defects into merits. With the intriguing scenes, various characters and personalities, meaningful sentences and provoking transitions, this film is really worth watching and studying. I strongly recommend those who haven't watched this film have a try, and those who have watched try a brain storm, and I'm sure that's going to be interesting.
Fight Club Review
Fight Club is one of those movies where each time you rewatch it, you realize more and more things that you did not pick up on the previous rerun. When you watch Fight Club, you might think that it is simply about members of a club that all they do is fight one another. When really it is a much deeper and dramatic story than it seems.

The story follows an unnamed man played by Edward Norton and narrates the entire movie. The narrator lives a boring life where he has a boring job that is meaningless and doesn't care for. The narrator's life becomes meaningless to him and starts to fall into a depression which gives him insomnia. After many weeks of sleepless nights, the narrator visits his doctor to try and get help with his insomnia but is no help and suggests visiting support groups. After going to a few the narrator relies on them to vent so he can get sleep. When he notices a woman named Marla Singer (Helena Bonham Carter) starting to go to each support group as well he develops insomnia again. The narrator finds himself on an airplane for a business trip and meets a man named Tyler Durden (Brad Pitt). When the narrator returns home from the business trip he discovers that his condo was blown up, he decides to move in with Tyler in an abandoned house and also start a "Fight Club" in at a local bar. The purpose of the club was for men to get all their frustrations out about themselves, society, or anything by fighting one another. After some time Tyler decides to make the club members to start revolting against society by destroying all the popular consumer products and committing acts of terrorism known as Project Mayhem. Tyler disappears and the narrator is the one left in charge. He keeps running into people he knows from Fight Club and determines that he is Tyler. The movie ends with the narrator and Marla at the top of a building watching the financial buildings crumble to the ground due to Project Mayhem's plans.

In Fight Club, David Fincher uses multiple camera angles to make the audience feel a certain way at different times. In the fighting scenes in the bar, the cinematographer uses low angle shots whenever Tyler speaks showing that he is the one in charge. The use of close up shots of the bloodied and beaten faces of club members makes the audience react in the way Fincher intended you to. The cinematographer also filmed the fight scenes in a way which makes the viewer feel like they are actually in the fight. The camera bops back and forth, falls down with the fighters, and shows the nasty and grotesque injuries up close and personal to make you feel like you are the one beating someone up.

Lighting is a major role in this film as well. Fincher uses expressional lighting a lot throughout the film. In the scenes in the basement of Lou's Tavern, there is only a few lights hanging from the ceiling to make the scene feel more dark and mysterious. The use of expressional and low lighting throughout the film makes Fight Club have more classic noir characteristics with a modern twist of the time.

Not knowing that the narrator was Tyler until finding out towards the end of the film added to the film. It made you think differently of the narrator and left you wanting to find out more about Tyler just like the narrator is trying to do. Each time I rewatch Fight Club I still find myself learning more and more about the narrator and Tyler. Edward Norton and Brad Pitt did an amazing job in this film and the attitude and characteristics they have added to the feel of the film.

"His name was Robert Paulson."
Classic? Are You Sure?
David Fincher is a great director, Alex McDowell is a truly innovative production designer and Chuck Palahniuk is a good writer, so, when the two came together, we knew that there was no way that the product of their collaboration would be bad. In fact, it seems most people are of the opinion that it is very nearly a work of genius, and, while it's true that, in places, Fight Club does occupy that territory, it's not genius in its entirety. Let me explain.

Fight Club starts off well as a well- observed satire on masculinity and machismo, but, then, in its last third, for some strange reason, any sense of humour is abandoned and the film starts to advocate what it was taking a swipe at. This change of tone and unevenness is unfortunately too distracting for me and, consequently, I'm afraid I can't see Fight Club as an absolute classic.
Consumerism in Film
Fight club is a very interesting look at the the way we live our lives compared to how we want to and what the reality of our dreams could look like. The Narrator lives the quintessential "American Dream" a decently paying job with travel around the country and more material items than he knows what to do with. And when life turns down for him, his apartment blows up, he realizes he has nobody to turn to. This in itself would of been a travesty of life but as is revealed toward the end of the film, the Narrator did this to himself. I view this as the manifestation of the Narrator's distaste in his current life. He lives a life trapped in his own discomfort, going to cancer meetings and pretending to be dealing with real issues when in fact he is dealing with depression stemming from his hatred of his own affluence. Once he has to face this reality, by Marla Singer also feeding off the pain of others. Her character is more emotionally complex in that she lives in a crack apartment and steals for food. She doesn't have superficial problems with her life, she has real issues and things to have a reason for being upset or hating existing. Maybe her reason for false consolation is her inability to face real adversity. Just like how the Narrator can't face his life sucks and hates it. Fincher's use of framing throughout the film creating a feeling of claustrophobia, putting the viewer in the mental state of the Narrator. All the action is centrally focused with external characters rounding out the shots. The end shot of the credit buildings falling is the first example of an open frame. This connects emotionally to the Narrator for the first time allowing another human being to embrace him in a non violent or aggressive fashion. Fincher also used lighting on an emotional level throughout the film. Even during shots during the day time there was an aura of darkness around the Narrator, again the film didn't seem bright or with life until the final explosion shot as the building falling seemed to be acting as fireworks in celebration of his personal escape from his self made prison. Costuming of the characters was also brilliant. As the gaudy outfits of Tyler and Marla seemed to exemplify what a regular person would think would happen to anybody if they lived at a slot machine for 5 years and took a flight to New York City. The underlying message of the film however seems to be kind of fuzzy. It is very obviously anti consumerism and an attempt to show the furthest extent that a person can be pushed to when they live their life defined by what they own. However the film itself doesn't seem to be outside of this corporate influence. As Pepsi has a prominent presence on the screen, even featuring an actual Pepsi ad in front of the news report on the smiley face building. This could be seen as an active decision, seeing the irony in this and allowing it anyways. But I don't buy that. It seems that the main message is fogged down by the true reality of modern film. As much we want to believe they are free forms of creativity and free from foreign influence. They still need to be funded and still need to appeal to as many as possible. So as creative a movie Flight Club was, even its anti consumerism message cant escape the grasp of what has become big Hollywood controlling what gets made and what is inside these films.
"Fight Club" requires a lot of viewer trust and patience, but the reward is a very fine movie.
"Fight Club" runs a bit over 2 hours. For the first 1 hour and 51 minutes I found this movie very difficult to watch or enjoy. I kept wondering why Ed Norton's character continued to put up with Brad Pitt's out-of-control character. To me the movie seemed to be one big mess. However, my patience, and trust in the director, paid off and I had to watch much of the movie twice to really appreciate how good it is. I rate it 9 of 10 and predict it will be one of those ground-breaking films that viewers and critics refer to for years, much like "The Matrix" and "The Sixth Sense." It is definitely for someone with a mature mind, who can understand subtleties, and who enjoys "studying" a film. This film is definitely meant to be a funny and absurd take on life, but with a very dark tone to it. It isn't really about "fight clubs", although the fighting is presented as an avenue for characters to deal with their inner conflicts. It is not intended to represent reality, nor to suggest that fighting is good. It's closest prior film is perhaps "Doctor Strangelove."

I saw this film on DVD. The sound is perhaps the best I've heard so far. There are several crashes and explosions throughout the movie and the realism is just so good it made me cringe. But you have to have a good subwoofer to enjoy it all.


However, I think most people will enjoy the movie more, on first viewing, if they understand the total concept. So here it is.

Norton plays the "narrator", and in the introductory scenes we find out he has a conventional existence, a traveling job as a "recall coordinator" for a major automobile manufacturer. By his own admission he is "a slave to the IKEA nesting instinct", travels with his "CK shirts and DKNY shoes", and says of his total existence "close to being complete." "Fighting" is completely foreign to him. But, deep in his subconscious he hates what he is becoming, and if he were to die now his life will have been meaningless.

Brad Pitt's character, Tyler Durden, is Norton's alter-ego. They are one and the same person. In opening scenes you see various single-frame flashes (stop-action on DVD helps see this clearly) of Pitt's 'Tyler', we assume still in Norton's subconscious as he first begins to realize he hates his existence.

Then, on a buisness flight, while talking to the lady seated next to him, Norton thinks "I pray for a crash or midair collision", which is quickly followed by a highly realistic "dream collision", then Pitt's Tyler Durden the rest of the trip is actually sitting next to Norton, conversing with him. This "prayer for a crash" is the consciousness that first makes Pitt's Tyler totally real to Norton.

The rest of the movie has many scenes with both Norton and Tyler but, we see later, no one else ever sees Brad Pitt's "Tyler", they only see Norton as "Tyler." Brad Pitt's Tyler is explained this way, "You were looking for a way to change your life. You could not do this on your own. All the ways you wish you could be - that's me. I look like you want to look... am free in all the ways you are not. Little by little you're letting yourself become - Tyler Durden."

The movie's title is unfortunately misleading, because only a small part of the movie is really about the fighting, which is used as a way for disillusioned men to get out their frustrations. One line by Norton, "This kid from work, Ricky, couldn't remember if you ordered pens with blue ink or black. But Ricky was a 'god' for 10 minutes when he trounced the maitre d' of the local food court", explains the gist of why they fight. It symbolizes the one area where they are in complete control of their pleasure and pain.

That last comment, "maitre d' of the local food court" illustrates the comedic approach to much of the movie. Who ever heard of a food court having a maitre d'? How much lower in the food chain could you get? Or Ricky supplying ink pens at work? One of the fight club "assignments", to pick a fight with a stranger, then lose", has a number of very funny sequences in it.

The movie turns very dark when the fight club kicks itself "up a notch" and begins to plot the destruction of all major buildings housing credit card companies. The rationale - destroy them and all their records of debt, and everyone can start again at ground zero. When Norton's Tyler finally at 1 hour 52 minutes into the film finally figures out what he had done, he tries unsuccessfully to twarth the plan. The final scene shows him and his girlfriend standing before a window in a high-rise, and sequentially all bombs go off and the buildings crash into various piles of rubble. Reminiscent of the final scene of "Doctor Strangelove", where all the nuclear bombs are going off, destroying the world.

The closing line, Norton says, "Everything will be alright. You met me at a really strange time in my life." Again, dark humor.

The genius of this film, if there is any, resides in the premise that the two main characters represent the two extremes of the same person, and in the end the "real" Tyler Durden meets them in the middle. Once you know this premise, and can watch the whole movie in this context, I found it much more enjoyable, made much more sense, and every scene with both Tylers is done completely in character with the premise.

The DVD also has a second DVD which is devoted to extras which are in themselves very interesting if you like to study the art of film-making. However, plan to spend a minimum of 5 hours total in viewing and studying this film to get its full impact.
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