Worth A Look: 15.13%
Pretty Bad: 3.16%
Total Crap: 9.87%
26 reviews, 604 user ratings
|Fight Club (1999)
by Chef ADogg
Congratulations, sucker—you just paid seven and a half dollars to watch me run rampant and unrestrained over three reels of celluloid. Think you can take it?Easy challenge, right? Nothing to it, just watching a movie. Hear me out, though, before you commit yourself. I’m going to throw up a few warning signs—wouldn’t want you to walk into something this ugly, pointless, and stupid without at least a couple paragraphs of prep. Here are a few dollops of clarification, to get you started.
"I am David Fincher’s uncontrolled cinematic impulses."
a) What is Fight Club?
Fight Club is, first and foremost, an underground organization where men from all around come to bash the living shit out of each other. Sounds provocative, right? Not really, after I get my grubby paws all over it. See, I’m David Fincher, I’ve made a couple of well received movies, and my ego is at an all time high. So I’m going to take this really cool plot and stretch it out until it has no bounce and no snap and the satire dries up. And then I’m going to tack on some nonsense about “Operation Mayhem”—basically, a bunch of workaday hacks running around strapped with bombs, guns, and other devices of destruction, intent on making their (and everyone else’s) lives better by....blowing shit up.
You heard me. They’re gonna blow shit up. In slow motion.
b) Who is Tyler Durden?
Tyler Durden is essentially a caustic and angry composite of every man’s dreams. He’s a Ken doll with an attitude, an appetite for destruction, and a few crazy, half formed plans clinking and clattering around his pretty vacant head.
And he’s Brad Pitt, too. Because he was in “Seven,” and that made an assload of money.
c) Who is the Narrator?
The Narrator is YOU, my friend. You weak, shriveled, de-testicled wimp. The part called for someone to stand around looking clever, and Edward Norton does that better than anyone. When he gets a good role, he sinks his teeth in and breaks through the medium of film, but you’re not really interested in that, are you? Nah, let’s not actually challenge the medium with which we work—wouldn’t want to upset the gods (and lose our eighty million dollar budget in the process). So we’ll just have him whine for awhile, and make vague wisecracks.
I mean, shit, we got Brad Pitt.
d) Where are all the women?
Sure, you could say it’s a bit narrow minded to think that women aren’t slaves to the same grind as men—but you’d be missing the point. You’re watching a film about half naked guys who gather round to get gloriously slimy and tussle with each other in a dirty basement. If you walk into the theater expecting fair shakes and various viewpoints, you’re obviously under the delusion that I am a talented filmmaker.
e) Why does everybody think this schlock is brilliant?
Duh! I’m David Fincher. Need I remind you that I made “Seven”?
Let me give y’all a crash course in “breakthrough filmmaking”—if you make everything as dark and grimy as possible, you’re going to earn points with art house devotees. If you include mounds and mounds of bloody, garish violence, everyone who’s anyone is going to call it “brutally realistic” (and that’s even AFTER you toss in phony effects that make it sound like these guys are punching wet bags of flour instead of actual human flesh). If you round up famous, moderately talented actors, critics and fans alike will go on patting said thespians on the back, telling them it’s their best work yet.
Take all that, and then give a starring role to Brad Pitt. Wah-lah! Four star soufflé!
Having said all that, I’m going to let you watch my film now. Feel free at any time to marvel at the amazing job I did with the direction. Lots of whizzing shots and new cinematic technology. It doesn’t add up to much in the long run, but at least people will remember individual scenes as outstanding, rather than the shitty movie they make as a sum. That’s my piece. Now watch the picture, talk amongst yourselves, and, hey—try not to enjoy it too much.It’s art.
link directly to this review at https://www.efilmcritic.com/review.php?movie=1552&reviewer=123
originally posted: 10/24/99 05:55:05