One of the best movies of the nineties was, without doubt, Fight Club. Fight Club is about an office employee, named Jack, who is tired of his useless existence. One day he meets Tyler Durden, a random guy who sits near him in an airplane flight. They talk about life and decide to be friends. When Jack arrives at home, it appears that his apartment has exploded. He immediately calls Tyler to ask for temporarily shelter. Tyler accepts and they stay together in a squatted house. One day they decide to establish a fighting club, for men like themselves who are tired of the modern consumption driven society. The movie contains some philosophies about life that are interesting. A few of them will be discussed in this review.
The men in Fight Club are all tired of their existence. They do not have a purpose. In the past there was always a war or some other enemy to fight. Nowadays the only goal is to consume as many products as possible. Tyler Durden states:
“Man, I see in Fight Club the strongest and smartest men who've ever lived. I see all this potential and I see it squandered. God damn it, an entire generation pumping gas, waiting tables – slaves with white collars. Advertising has us chasing cars and clothes, working jobs we hate so we can buy shit we don't need. We're the middle children of history, man. No purpose or place. We have no Great War. No Great Depression. Our great war is a spiritual war. Our great depression is our lives. We've all been raised on television to believe that one day we'd all be millionaires, and movie gods, and rock stars, but we won't. We're slowly learning that fact. And we're very, very pissed off.”
This statement characterizes the life of many people in the 21th century. And it reflects the existentialistic philosophy of Jean Paul Sartre. The protagonists in Fight Club ask themselves why they exist. What is the purpose of their life?
One other theme in fight club is that of feminization of society. Men act more feminine that in the past. Previously men worked hard to support their family. In ancient times they hunted on animals. Nowadays, they sit all day in an office room, shuffling papers, doing nothing really. You see men nowadays wearing Uggs, paying much attention to their appearance and grooming themselves. This feminization of society is illustrated in the movie by the bodybuilder Bob. Bob survived testicular cancer, but has developed breasts because of the treatment. He cries at support groups together with Jack.
The movie also contains the psychoanalysis by Sigmund Freud. From this perspective you can see that Tyler Durden is the id. Tyler Durden does whatever he wants and is driven by primal instincts. The society that suppresses the protagonist, Jack, is the Superego. Jack himself is the ego.