In a perfect world, people wouldn’t argue about which of David Fincher’s films is the best and just enjoy them as cathartic experiences that you won’t get anywhere else. I’ve been a Fincher fan for a while, and the one thing I’ve noticed in all of his films is this underlying sense of dread. This fear that anything and everything can go wrong at any given moment, and at any given time.
This wasn’t as prominent in his recent features, but if you head back to anything before The Curious Case of Benjamin Button, that dread is there to stay. No other film in Fincher’s filmography does that better than Fight Club, a film about everything going wrong at every step of the way.
How to Stream or Download Fight Club
You can stream it or you can download the film from a digital store. Click on the Download button at the end of this review.
The Movie Review
The story follows an unnamed insomniac narrator whose life is perhaps the most dreadful thing in existence. He lives in a tiny apartment, working at an unfair job where he is constantly overworked by his boss. He’s essentially one bad day away from snapping, and he gets his opportunity to snap when he runs into a weird soap salesman named Tyler Durden on a flight home.
Together, they form a fight club and create a place for people to let out their frustrations. Though, things start to take a darker turn as Tyler Durden’s motivations change from fight club to terrorism.
This film has a consistent theme to it, and that theme is anti-consumerism. That’s a weird theme to have in a film about fight clubs and terrorism.
Consumerism is when you save up and spend money on buying things. Whereas after a while, when the narrator and Tyler Durden snapped as people, they stopped buying things. They stopped paying rent, they stopped buying clothes, they just spent their time on taking things by force.
This is the story that David Fincher is laying out, about how two people were pushed to the absolute brink of their mental capacity and they forgot morality and started taking whatever they wanted.
This goes above and beyond in some cases as Tyler begins to plot terrorist attacks and take lives. Fincher’s direction for this film showcases this steady decline through the eyes of the narrator.
The final quest in the film is quite a big reveal, and it makes you realize how important the themes were. It is also one of the most iconic twists in the history of Hollywood, something that truly shocks you.
These twists and turns would be nothing if it wasn’t for the fantastic performances by Edward Norton and Brad Pitt. The two serve as the catalyst for this film’s purpose, showcasing the themes and the story.
They also deliver fantastic performances as the characters they’re playing. Norton as the tortured white-collar worker, whereas Tyler played by Brad Pitt is unhinged and psychopathic.
Visually, this film is not as good as every other Fincher film. He did find a certain style later on in his career, but Fight Club is definitely a distinct film.
It doesn’t try to give you beautiful camera work and lighting, instead it tries to give you gritty and perverted framing. The camera is almost always positioned in a perverted way, showcasing the darkest and the most disturbing aspects of society.
The music in the film though is hard to categorize. At some points it’s absolutely fantastic, the score at times fits so perfectly with the themes of the film. At other times, it is intentionally made to feel out of place to remind you that this is a surreal experience.
it does have one of the greatest music moments in the history of film at the very end though, that is when the buildings are exploding and The Pixies’ Where Is My Mind plays in the background.
The Bottom Line
Fight Club is one of the world’s most popular films, it is not popular just because of the iconic twist at the end but because of the fantastic character writing and the direction of David Fincher.
He makes a meticulously crafted film, that sets out to do something specific, and show you something you haven’t seen before in cinema. He does exactly that, showing you how dark and realistic the depictions of mental illness can get in film.
- Incredible story, well-directed from start to finish.
- Fantastic acting, the actors perform their roles with utmost sincerity.
- Dark camera work makes for some gritty framing.
- The music quality is inconsistent and can feel quite repetitive.
- The camera work lacks style, looking more like a dark film from the 90s than a Fincher film.