It's always easy to spot a director's style. Get about halfway through a film,
and all the tell tale signs are there. However, in David Fincher's case, the
signs can be spotted in the opening credits. From these bizzare credits and
character introductions, to the dark filming locations, to the unusual music,
Fincher is a master of foreboding, creepy atmospheres.
The story revolves around the narrator, Jack (Edward Norton), an insomniac
who's slowly dying thanks to his boring existence. Frequenting support groups
for illnesses he doesn't posess seems to aleviate his insomnia until he meets
Marla (Helena Botham Carter) ,who somehow ruins the experience by being a
fellow faker. Shortly thereafter he meets up with Tyler Durden (Brad Pitt), an
man who seems to be everything Jack always wished he could be. Together, Jack
and Tyler form a club where men who are bored with their lives go to beat each
other up. While things are going well with the club, Tyler seems to be forming
plans for escalating the club behind Jack's back.
David Fincher's previously well known works have been "Se7en" and "The Game",
which are both dark films which mess with ones mind. This latest venture into
the unusual is based on Chuck Palahniuk's novel, the primary message in "Fight
Club" seems to be that one should throw off the shackles of everyday life and
be all that one wants to be. This message is given in a story which, at first
glance, appears to be about nothing more than a bunch of guys beating each
other up every night. While there is certainly a lot of violence and an ungodly
amount of blood, there is also some wonderful dialogue, a few truly hilarious
scenes, and terrific acting all around.
To begin with, this movie is not even remotely appropriate for younger
audiences. There are more scenes here which show people being beaten to bloody,
barely living pulps than one can count. There are also a few gross out scenes
that really do their job quite well (almost too well as a matter of fact).
Swearing is rampant, and sex is rather prevalant throughout most of the movie.
So please, don't take any children to see this.
Now, my MPAA warning out of the way, on to the good stuff. For all the
one-liner fans out there, this movie is full of them. A great example would be
"On a long enough time-line, everyones survival rate is zero". In fact, the
dialogue is so witty, insightful, and humorous that it's a little difficult to
believe it's coming from the mouths of the characters involved here.
As for the acting, Edward Norton is terrific, as always, and it's entirely
possible he'll be in the running for a little gold statue on his mantel. Brad
Pitt, who has shown that he can do well when given the right roles (12 Monkeys,
Se7en) is absolutely hilarious in the role of the out of control Tyler. Helena
Botham Carter, who audiences would know best for her roles in "Mary Shelly's
Frankenstein" and "Mighty Aphrodite", is perfect as the rather disturbed third
party in this trio.
I don't want to give too much of this film away, because the plot twists are a
lot of the fun here. Suffice to say, you'll never see the end coming. To sum
up, for a fun, insightful, and very gruesome movie, catch "Fight Club". I fully
recommend it and award it four and a half stars.
* * * * * - One of the greatest movies ever made, see it now.
* * * * - Great flick. Try and catch this one.
* * * - Okay movie, hits and misses.
* * - Pretty bad. See it if you've got nothing better to do.
* - One of the worst movies ever. See it only if you enjoy pain.
Copyright © 2000 John Beachem