Knuckle Sandwich Therapy
Fight Club
Review by Ross Anthony

This picture "coulda been a contenda!" The flimmakers' fancy foot work in matching up richly odd (yet achingly familiar) characters for a round of painful redemption is nothing short of excellent. Unfortunately, the young fighter (the film) starts slurring its punches, slipping and sliding in its own sweat by the sixth round. Though still standing at the bell in the ninth, "Fight Club" voluntarily hands over the title by squandering it's award winning lead.

Upon the everyday canvas of life, a bizarre fighting ring is erected as a stinging remedy/answer to it. I was (metaphorically) jumping out of my seat and routing this picture on! Norton plays the stereotypical materialistically-reassured yuppie with an atypically acute dose of depression. Seeking some sense of purpose, he stumbles into a spectral variety of support groups to which he becomes contentedly addicted until he meets Brad Pitt. This is where the already powerful film shifts into hyperdrive. Let's leave the plot line at that, shall we?

In the Tarantino spirit, this hard-hitting (at times plainly gory), psychologically challenging film is also a comedy. Unfortunately, comedy slips from this wondrously hybrid mix in rounds six through eight (reprising in the ninth). Also, the motif of fists to flesh is slightly overdone.

Norton is great; Pitt, nothing less than mighty. Whether or not his posterior is worshipped by half the population, Pitt is one of the greatest actors of our time (and you can quote me on that).

"Fight Club" is simply rough and thick! Even though it loses punch during its extended running time (about 2 hours 20 minutes), it is still a vibrant contribution to the film world and has all the magnetically therapeutic attraction to which cult-movie-goers will no doubt cling. "This is a good life and it's ending one moment at a time." Enjoy it if you dare -- what are you afraid of?

  • Fight Club. Copyright © 1999.
  • Starring Brad Pitt, Edward Norton and Helena Bonham Carter.
  • Directed by David Fincher.
  • Screenplay by Jim Uhls (based on Chuck PalaHniuk's novel).
  • Produced by Art Linson, Cean Chaffin and Ross Grayson-Bell at Unison/Regency/Tarus/20th Century Fox.


Copyright © 1999 Ross Anthony, currently based in Los Angeles, has scripted and shot documentaries, music videos, and shorts in 35 countries across North America, Europe, Africa and Asia. For more reviews visit:

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Last Modified: Saturday, 16-Sep-2006 08:10:54 PDT