fight club
20th Century Fox
1999
R

“Now, a question of etiquette. As I pass, do I give you the ass or the crotch?”

  • 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 a sensuous eccentric gets in the way and ignites an out-of-control spiral toward oblivion.

I’m afraid that there’s nothing I can say in this review of the movie Fight Club that hasn’t already been articulated before, and far better. By now, I believe the significance of the cultural zeitgeist that was Fight Club is apparent…as well as the utter misunderstanding of the point of the movie all together, but that’s getting ahead of myself again.

The final months of 1999 leading into the 2000s was kind of a heady time. We had the lingering phantom threat of the Y2K apocalypse, movies like The 6th Sense, The Blair Witch Project, and The Matrix were revolutionizing the way we watched movies, and the internet was starting to become much more ubiquitous. I was really embracing the Gothic subculture and delving more into the existential ramifications of my own faith, slowly making the journey out of the shiny plastic veneer that is Evangelical Christianity in America.

What does this have to do with Fight Club, you may ask? Good question. All I can say that, when I first watched this at a second-run theater in Omaha with a friend of mine who had already seen it before me and was insisting that I take in a showing with her, my mind was immediately blown by pretty much everything: From the opening credits featuring a zoom-out effect from the inner microscopic view of the protagonist’s brain, out to the gun sticking in Ed Norton’s mouth, to the way everything unfolded in the narration, the anarchic nihilism and strong psychological implications–not to mention a heavy dose of Unreliable Narrator messing with my brain like a drunken kitten–and I emerged from the theater wanting more. Of course, this led to heading to one of the many Village Inn spots and talking about it for hours over food and coffee. Lots and lots of coffee.

Fight Club is another one of the movies in my Top Ten Favorite non-Horror list, something that I’ve revisited many times, and still get something out of even after all the viewings. I could go on for reams of pages of virtual paper, picking this movie apart and trying (and failing miserably) to explain why this movie has had such an impact on me. Again, other much better articulated articles and posts have already done that for me. I kind of understand why this movie has been taken completely the wrong way by the masses. Sometimes you have to embrace the darkness to fully understand the light better. I read that on a t-shirt, somewhere, I think. Anyway, highly recommended.