Thursday, 9 August 2007

Fight Club

“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.”

Now where would the fun in that be?

Released in 1999 and based on the book by Chuck Palahniuk, this has to be one of my favourite films of all time. It’s one of the smartest and thought provoking films I have ever seen. With so many layers and details incorporated into it’s unique story - a blend of insomnia, corporate consumerism, the definition of masculinity, hints of many religions and the exploration of modern day life. The list is endless, there are so many idea’s included into this two hour masterpiece, that everyone who watches it will take something different away from it.

As you follow the narrator (who is never named), you begin to discover and realise what a shallow world we live in. How everyone strives to look like the models in the magazines or builds their lives around their Ikea products. What the media tells you is expected of you, without following societies expectations you will amount to nothing. How can you be complete if you don’t become what society expects you to become? How can you show your success if you don’t buy products to put it on display. If you don’t have the beautiful wife and kids all living in a £300,000 condo, then you have failed in life.

“The things you own, end up owning you.”

The film develops these notions and follows the narrator as he slowly breaks free of these constricting rules. He’s fed up with life, he need’s an outlet to get rid of all his pain and suffering. This starts with attending self-help classes, where he listens to other people's problems in order to help himself feel better.

Then he meets Tyler Durden, the epitome of the perfect man, he’s cool, he’s sexy, he’s masculine, he’s smart, he’s confident, he has vast amounts of knowledge on all the things you wish you could remember (making bombs), he’s everything the narrator wants to be. Tyler doesn’t have a care in the world, he doesn’t follow societies rules and he’s happy.

“All the ways you wish you could be, that's me. I look like you wanna look, I fuck like you wanna fuck, I am smart, capable, and most importantly, I am free in all the ways that you are not.”

Together they form fight club, a place for the everyman to come to life and not be judged on the materialistic nature of the world, on the money in their bank, the style of their clothes, the job they do, etc. A place where men can be men, where they can let their repressed aggression out on each other, then go home and feel a little better about themselves.

“You're not your job. You're not how much money you have in the bank. You're not the car you drive. You're not the contents of your wallet. You're not your fucking khakis. You're the all-singing, all-dancing crap of the world.”

This then escalates into Project Mayhem, where Tyler basically declares an all out war on modern day life and all its shortcomings. His main goal being to destroy the credit card balance building, when everything is gone and the credit ratings are reduced to zero everyone will be equal.

“It's only after we've lost everything that we're free to do anything”

How the story is told, is brilliant, always from the perspective of the narrator and it draws you in so you feel a part of this world, a part of this rebellion.

With a script that is probably one of the best ever written and full with quotable lines of dialogue (hence all the quotes in this review), this is a joy to watch from start to finish.

The acting is all stellar, with Brad Pitt, Edward Norton and Helen Boham Carter putting in amazing performances.

David Fincher (the director) should be congratulated with what is one of my favourite films of all time. As well as being an expert story teller, his eye for visuals is awe-inspiring. The cinematography is incredible, every frame could be a painting, alas a very dark and gritty one, but beautiful none the less. With the strangely weird sex scene or the opening shot travelling through the narrators brain, out of his pours and along the barrel of a gun being some of the highlights.

“This is your life and it's ending one minute at a time.” But I’m glad I’ve taken the time out of my life to watch this masterpiece.


What do you think? I’m sure other’s will take different things away than what I have.

And a few more quotes, as I love every bit of dialogue in this film, if I had enough time I’d post the whole script!

“Reject the basic assumptions of civilization, especially the importance of materiel possessions.”

“We've all been raised on television to believe that one day we'd all be millionaires, and movie gods, and rock stars. But we won't. And we're slowly learning that fact. And we're very, very pissed off.”

1 comment:

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