Fight Club (Chuck Palahniuk) 2*

Stick to the movie, folks.  It’s a first novel.  Seriously, this is like reading a draft.  In the intro, Palahniuk says that he didn’t know what he was doing, so he just shoveled everything he could think of into the story.

The bones are definitely Palahniuk’s, but the flesh that makes it human came from Fincher/Norton/Bonham-Carter.  The director did an amazing job cleaning this up for the big screen, and Edward Norton and Helena Bonham-Carter filled out characters that are really quite faintly sketched.

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4 responses to “Fight Club (Chuck Palahniuk) 2*

  1. So, what IF you moved to Shanghai?
    I think we shared the last nesting urge as well. It seems like such a good end game, but how could I ever stop looking forward to the great newness-of-circumstance after a move? Two years at Mogg Street was a lifetime.
    If we are to speak in books, my purge started with Kipling’s Kim: with the white orphan from the streets of British India who takes no bag on his Huck-Finn journeys of hundreds of miles as the chela of a Lama. What a sandal-clad vision! “A sahib is tied to his luggage,” he notes.

    • I see young men, my townsmen, whose misfortune it is to have inherited farms, houses, barns, cattle, and farming tools; for these are more easily acquired than got rid of…. They have got to live a man’s life, pushing all these things before them…[It is] labor enough to subdue and cultivate a few cubic feet of flesh.
      –Thoreau, from Walden

  2. You realize you gave the same rating to Fight Club as you gave to Lord Foul’s Bane, right? I mean, Fight Club ain’t the literary masterpiece of all time, but really now. And besides, what other Palahniuk novel have you read that was so much better? Survivor? Choke?

    • 2.5 stars, then. It’s the only Palahniuk novel I’ve ever read, and things might stay that way. I had expectations that it would be like The English Patient with more testosterone, but instead it was like a drunken night at a creative writing workshop with potheads mumbling about faces in the woodwork.
      5 stars for the screenwriter & director who adapted this into a coherent and innovative script.

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