Analysis of Fight Club

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Tyler Thompson
ENC 1101
Prof. Kennedy
13 March 2012
Fight Club: The Narrator vs. Tyler Durden

The movie Fight Club is a very violent, satirical movie that centers around the main idea that modern culture makes men into cowards. That modern capitalist society turns men into mindless drones who have no individualism and no testosterone. The two main characters of the film, The Narrator (Edward Norton) and Tyler Durden (Brad Pitt), illustrate the absolute polar ends of this main theme. The Narrator represents society as it is. He is increasingly bored, self-help addicted, disillusioned and dissatisfied with his emasculated life (Filmsite). Tyler Durden, who is the exact opposite as The Narrator, is best described as a charismatic, anarchic punk and soap salesman (Filmsite). Throughout the course of the movie, the contrasts and developments of these two characters emphasizes the overall theme of the movie that our possessions and lives own us and, in the words of Tyler; “It's only after we've lost everything that we're free to do anything” (IMDb).

The Narrator is essentially a representation of everything wrong in modern society. At the beginning of the movie, he is depressed, absolutely bored with his life, and he absolutely loathes his job. His only sanctuary from all of this is to attend “self-help” seminars “where he can hug those less fortunate than himself and find catharsis in their suffering” (Ebert). Roger Ebert points out an interesting fact that the first meeting he attends is ironically a testicular cancer seminar, seeing as how the movie is all about how men are basically made into cowards. As the movie progresses and The Narrator is lectured and schooled by the anarchistic Tyler, he begins to free himself from his mundane life. Through the violent actions of the underground Fight Club they start all the way up to the end of Project Mayhem, Tyler shares interesting proverbs and witty conjectures about society that The Narrator begins to adapt...
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