Director David Fincher has made some of my favorite films of the past 20 years, including "Se7en" and "The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo".
So why does FIGHT CLUB, one of his biggest hits, leave me so cold?
Edward Norton stars as a disconnected, depressed office worker who attends a myriad of therapy groups for diseases he doesn't have, just for the social interaction.
His life is turned upside down when he meets magnetic soap salesman Tyler Durden, played in bold, full throttle style by Brad Pitt.
Durden is everything that our narrator isn't.
Bold, exciting, dangerous, aggressive.
Soon they start Fight Club, a brutal open arena in which bored men of all social groups battle one-on-one to bring excitement to their lives.
The fights are bloody, brutal and tough to watch.
Soon, Fight Club becomes something much bigger and much more dangerous as the group becomes a movement and the anti-social antics rise to anti-society mayhem.
Fincher moves things along at a decent pace, with interesting style, but the film drips with such relentless darkness, violence and negativity, it becomes less entertainment and more endurance test as it rolls onward.
The music by The Dust Brothers is great, the cast is able, Meatfoaf and Jared Leto surprise with their strength in supporting roles.
Fincher's SE7EN was this dark but had a balance of good and evil that is sorely missed here.
I'm going to have to put this in the same category as Oliver Stone's "Natural Born Killers" which was also well crafted, from a director I respect, but centered around characters so lacking in any moral compass that I can't connect with them to appreciate the ride.
There are twenty minutes of brilliance in this film. That leaves two hours of dirty, violent sludge filling out the running time.
Big fan of Fincher and Pitt, but not this.
Fincher has insisted in interviews that this is a black comedy. If so, its the darkest comedy ever committed to film.
Fight Club gets a dark, messy, blood drenched C.