helena maguire

Fight Club (1999)

Plot: The first rule of Fight Club is that you don’t talk about Fight Club.

Review: Fight Club is the very highly regarded David Fincher film based on the novel by Chuck Palahniuk, which reunited the director with his Seven star Brad Pitt. And it’s a very successful reunion.

The story is essentially about ‘The Narrator’, played by Edward Norton. An insomniac office worker who frequents support groups for various illnesses and conditions in order to be able to cry, and thus sleep. That changes when he meets Tyler Durden (Brad Pitt), a flashy guy with a devil-may-care attitude, with whom he starts an underground fighting ring. However things start to escalate from there, and our narrator finds himself getting dragged deeper and deeper into anti-establishment acts of violence, all at Durden’s insistence. But our narrator may not be as reliable with the facts as he appears to be.

Fincher has created a terrific film which Norton carries superbly. Pitt is very good too; it’s weird, but he is always better when playing a supporting role with an interesting character than he is when he plays the leading man himself, and Durden is really unique. There is more able support from Helena Bonham Carter, who circles narrator and Durden without getting between the two, while Meat Loaf is great as Bob, a man who has survived cancer and is searching for a greater purpose. It all comes together really well.

The end features a genuine twist which has the capacity to really throw you (if you haven’t been made aware of it in advance), and though the grand finale seems more of a flight of fantasy, it works in context.