Fight club lesson 2 production context and critical reception
• “Those idiots just green lit a $75 million
experimental movie” (Fincher)
• “This is a seditious movie about blowing up
people like Rupert Murdoch.” (20thCentury
• A very controversial film
• The funding by a global conglomerate of a film
which attacks the capitalist, comsumerist
culture they are part of.
• The style and structure is unconventional. It’s
an experimental movie.
• Do you think that Fight Club is an
experimental film in terms of its use of visual
style and narrative structure?
• Does it conform to the conventions of
Hollywood cinema in any way?
• It took 138 days to shoot
• It was classified by the BBFC an 18
• Initially 2 main cuts were made to two scenes
as they were considered too violent. They
have since been reinserted as BBFC guidelines
have become more tolerant.
Fight Club: Critical reception
‘Fight Club is a dumbed-down extremism,
Extremism Lite, no-brainer extremism for the
Rush Limbaugh generation, an audience that
thinks the "diceman" is a really challenging
philosophy’ - The Guardian
"This monstrous film brutalises men
everywhere" - Daily Mail
"Fincher started out with a good
idea about male insecurity, but
somehow got this snarled up with a
daft story about right-wing nutters.
It's hard to think of another movie
this year that has begun so
promisingly and ended so poorly" -
“Shot in a convulsive, stream-of-
unconsciousness style... Fight Club
does everything short of rattling your
seat to get a reaction. You can call
that irresponsible. Or you can call it
the only essential Hollywood film of
the year" - Time Out
“It means to explore the lure of violence
in an even more dangerously
regimented, dehumanized culture. That's
a hard thing to illustrate this powerfully
without, so to speak, stepping on a few
toes” - New York Times
Roger Ebert- one of the most influential film critics in US at the
time of release.
Read his review:
Do you think Fight club is a Fascist film? What elements in the
film do you think he is referring to?
What is meant by the phrase “the sex movie Hollywood has
been heading towards for years?”
What does this suggest about the representation of women in
Can you find any positive reviews on its initial release? How
about more recently?
Fight Club: Media effects
“Two schoolboys grapple with each other as bystanders look on and shout
encouragement…pupils have set up their own Fight Club, based on the ultra-violent
film of the same name starring Brad Pitt. In the film, disaffected young men fight each
other in illegal bare-knuckle bouts.” - Daily Mail, February 2008
“Inspired by the 1999 film Fight Club, starring Brad Pitt and Ed Norton,
underground bare-knuckle brawling clubs have sprung up across the country as
a way for desk jockeys and disgruntled youths to vent their frustrations and
prove themselves.” - USA Today, 2000, May 2006
“A 17-year-old mimicking Brad Pitt’s “Fight Club” character, who plans attacks on
corporate America, was arrested on suspicion of masterminding a pre-dawn blast
outside a Starbucks Coffee shop” - The Washington Times, July 2009