Fight Club Movie vs. Book

1414 Words Nov 25th, 2012 6 Pages
Even considering the complicated format of the book, David Fincher managed to almost perfectly illustrate the novel Fight Club, by Chuck Palahniuk, in his movie of the same name. Although tempting to compare a book and its film counterpart on even grounds, as a substitute of one another, the tools used to create each one differ greatly and thus should be evaluated on a thematic level. While the reading audience has the chance to reread, and absorb the themes in layers, the other audience is seeing the piece as a whole, where the director has only a split second to have the same effect as the author had possibly made in multiple descriptive paragraphs.

David Fincher, the director of the film Fight Club, which was released in 1999 and
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Fincher used most of the exact dialogue from the book and accentuated it with mise-en-scène elements such as imitating the IKEA catalogue labels appearing over the furniture when the narrator describes his apartment and the narrator first rejecting Tyler’s offer of a smoke saying that “he doesn’t smoke” and later, as the narrator begins to merge the two personalities, he is seen smoking.

The director chose to change three major events in the novel when adopting the text to film. The first being the narrator’s initial meeting with his split personality – Tyler Durden. In the book, the narrator meets him at a nude beach. “This was the very end of summer, and I was asleep. Tyler was naked and sweating, gritty with sand, his hair wet and stringy, hanging in his face.” (32) In the movie however, the characters meet in the airplane, in very common circumstances for the narrator. This choice could not have been made due to the motion picture rating system since the director didn’t choose to omit any of the violent or sexual scenes, so it was most likely done in the process of simplification of the text. The novel has a tendency to skip in time to different episodes and locations of the narrator’s life, however the same effect in film is much harder to replicate partly because the viewer does not have the choice to go back and review what had happened

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