Fight Club (film)

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German title Fight Club
Original title Fight Club
Fight Club logo1.png
Country of production United States
original language English
Publishing year 1999
length 139 minutes
Age rating FSK 18
Director David Fincher
script Jim Uhls
production Ross Grayson Bell ,
Art Linson ,
Ceán Chaffin
music The Dust Brothers
camera Jeff Cronenweth
cut James Haygood

Fight Club is an American psychological thriller directed by David Fincher from 1999 based on the novel by Chuck Palahniuk .


The nameless protagonist works for a large car manufacturer in a major American city ​​as a recall coordinator and leads an outwardly inconspicuous life that is oriented towards superficial consumption. He detests his job and has suffered from insomnia for some time . To alleviate this, he takes part in self-help groups for the chronically ill by pretending to be terminally ill himself. The sympathy of the group members briefly relieves the protagonist's insomnia, at least until he meets Marla Singer there. Like him, she is a simulator who also unjustifiably participates in self-help groups. When he realizes this, he feels caught and uncomfortable and cannot sleep again.

His life changes radically when he meets the dubious soap dealer Tyler Durden on a business trip on a plane. After the protagonist's condo was destroyed in an explosion, he spontaneously turns to Tyler and meets with him in a pub. When the protagonist mentions that he needs a hotel, Tyler suggests that he can ask. After some persuasion, the protagonist asks him for a place to sleep, for which Tyler demands to be beaten in return. The result is a strangely friendly fight in which the protagonist feels strangely alive. As a result, he moves in permanently with Tyler, who has taken up residence in an abandoned, completely neglected villa.

After more fights in public, more men join them, who also seek the thrill of regular brawls. Tyler and the protagonist then found the Fight Club . The men meet regularly for fighting evenings in the basement of a bar. This kind of secret box is the new form of a self-help group for the protagonist - he is happy. One day Marla calls him for help after taking an overdose of sleeping pills. The protagonist ignores her, but Tyler takes care of Marla, whereupon the two start a violent affair with each other. Tyler asks the protagonist - as a favor among friends, so to speak - that he never talks to Marla about Tyler, which the protagonist also adheres to. At the same time, the protagonist uses a ruse to prevent his looming dismissal: On the one hand, he blackmails his employer with the truth that he manufactures cars that do not meet safety standards. In the office of his superior, he also beats himself up in front of his eyes, but blames his boss for it and thus ensures that he continues to receive salary as a “freelance consultant” without having to work.

Meanwhile, Tyler founds the Chaos project without the knowledge of his roommate , for which he recruits like-minded people from the Fight Club and places them in his house. This strictly organized force attacks the public order, leading to a death in their own ranks. The protagonist, who suffers from increasingly severe sleep disorders and memory gaps, now realizes that he has lost insight into Tyler and his plans. After Tyler suddenly disappears, the protagonist goes on his trail. He learns that Tyler has founded more fight clubs across the country to overthrow the prevailing order. To his dismay he learns that everyone thinks he is Tyler himself.

After the protagonist talked about Tyler in front of Marla and thus broken Tyler's only rule between the two, Tyler appears in a hotel room of the protagonist and finally reveals the truth about himself and him: He has a dissociative identity disorder . He himself is Tyler Durden, who only exists in his imagination as an independent person, a sovereign and anarchist person who is and does everything he could never be or do. The protagonist himself works as Tyler when he thought he was “sleeping”, he is still partly himself or he is watching Tyler. Back then he had beaten himself up in front of the bar, he himself had blown up his old apartment and his old life. As Tyler, he himself had the affair with Marla and has set a plan in motion that the protagonist is now trying to stop: The headquarters of all credit card companies are to be blown up in order to collapse the financial system and make everyone "from scratch" again. to get started. Tyler has made provisions for the eventuality that his "I" could turn against him: the members of Project Chaos are now opposing him and he can barely escape them.

In a skyscraper there is a final battle between the protagonist and his other "I" - as before, the protagonist actually beats himself up, with his "Tyler" side initially having the upper hand. Scenes of the fight from the "neutral" point of view of surveillance cameras show that Tyler and the protagonist are actually only one person. The protagonist convinces Tyler that he will kill himself - and with it both versions of himself. He shoots himself in the mouth and Tyler is seen falling to the ground with a hole in the back of his head. The protagonist, on the other hand, survived - he just shot himself through the cheek. However, Tyler's work can no longer be stopped. Together with Marla, who was supposed to have escaped in a bus but was brought to the skyscraper by the members of Project Chaos , the protagonist observes the destruction of the financial buildings.


The Olympic Cinema, on West Eighth Street, Los Angeles

The city where most of the action takes place is Wilmington , Delaware . However, the film was shot in Los Angeles .

Many locations have now been closed, such as the restaurant where Marla learns of the narrator 's split personality ( Clifton's Silver Spoon Cafeteria ). The bar ( Lou's Tavern ), in front of which the two main characters fight for the first time, has since been demolished.

However, some locations can still be found in Los Angeles. At the Promenade Towers, for example, the exterior view of the protagonist's burning apartment was created. The hotel where Marla stayed ( Bristol Hotel ) still exists and now offers low-priced one-bedroom apartments. The restaurant in which Tyler contaminates the food belongs to the Millennium Biltmore Hotel , where scenes from Beverly Hills Cop , Ghostbusters and Independence Day were created.

When Marla gets on the bus, a movie theater can be seen in the background advertising Seven Years in Tibet , in which Brad Pitt played the leading role. It's the Olympic Cinema on West Eighth Street in Los Angeles.


The German synchronization was for a dialogue book and the dialogue director of Frank Schaff on behalf of Interopa Film GmbH in Berlin .

role Actress German voice
Protagonist / narrator Edward Norton Andreas Fröhlich
Tyler Durden Brad Pitt Tobias Master
Marla Singer Helena Bonham Carter Sandra Schwittau
Robert "Bob" Paulson Meat loaf Stefan Fredrich
Richard Chesler Zach Grenier Bernd Rumpf
Angel Face Jared Leto Julien Haggège
Thomas David Andrews Bernd Schramm
Airport security officer Bob Stephenson Peter Reinhardt
The mechanic Get McCallany Thomas Nero Wolff
Ricky Eion Bailey Simon hunter


  • The name of the protagonist and narrator is not mentioned during the film. In the self-help groups he uses different names such as Rupert, Travis or Cornelius, which refer to characters from the Planet of the Apes or are allusions to various roles in Robert De Niro in the film . In secondary literature and reviews, the narrator is sometimes called Jack, as a result of a series of quotes along the lines of "I am Jack's medulla oblongata / I am Jack's wasted life / I am Jack's total lack of surprise" (etc.). He quotes from a magazine.
  • Tyler can be seen at least four times in different places only for a fraction of a second, in a so-called frame , before the protagonist even "gets to know" him on the plane, and then also in the further course of the film. However, this is not a person walking through the picture, but a short cut of a still image for fractions of a second.
  • A coffee mug can be seen in a striking number of scenes in the film.
  • During the shooting, the two main actors tried to bring in scenes from Wes Anderson's comedy Crazy , which they were both enthusiastic about. This gave rise to the "Koh-Koh" call that Tyler directed to his alter ego during the "fat theft" to signal him that the air was clean: In Loopy , one of the main characters uses this call to make his friend escape to help a psychiatric ward.
  • In the scene in which Tyler Durden threatens the Asian salesman in a liquor store with an unloaded revolver at night , Tyler Durden shouts the phrase "Run Forrest, run!" This is a quote from the 1994 film Forrest Gump .
  • On November 16, 2007, the special edition appeared on two DVDs in the steelbook .
  • The film grossed around $ 100 million worldwide .
  • Fight Club ranks 4th among the films from 1990 to 1999 rated best by users . Overall, it is currently 10th in IMDb.
  • At the end of the final scene, a picture of a penis is shown for a brief moment, as Tyler, who also worked in cinemas, always cut into films for fun.
  • When Marla and the narrator leave the restaurant and the narrator asks them to leave, in the background you can see a cinema in which Seven Years in Tibet is shown, in which Brad Pitt plays. In another scene, in which the members of the Fight Club are up to mischief in a video store, a blue illuminated poster of the 1996 science fiction film Independence Day hangs in the shop window . The first part of the is on a shelf in the video store 1979 science fiction film series Alien. The third installment in the 1992 Alien series was directed by David Fincher.
  • When you insert the DVD, a second warning appears next to the usual warning. This is attributed to Tyler Durden and is socially critical. At the end of the warning it says: "You have been warned ... Tyler."
  • The film breaks through the fourth wall several times . The protagonist speaks directly to the viewer when he introduces Tyler's work. In another example, Tyler points the gun at the protagonist. Referring to the beginning of the film, in which the scene was already shown, the protagonist says "I still ca n't think of anything", which Tyler comments with "flashback humor".
  • In July 2015, a rock opera version of the film was announced. David Fincher will direct with Julie Taymor and Trent Reznor will act as composer.


The film music was not recorded by an orchestra , as is the case with most films , but rather produced by the Dust Brothers . It is electronic music similar to downbeat , with many sound effects, which especially towards the end of the film intensify the disturbing effect on the viewer.

When it was released on CD , the chronological order of the film was not adhered to, instead the pieces were grouped thematically. There was also a single from This Is Your Life . This song is a remix of the music heard during the car accident ( called Medula oblongata on the album ), in which quotes from the Brad Pitt movie were recorded.

In addition to the Dust Brothers score , music appears in two other scenes in the film. Goin 'Out West by Tom Waits , played when the first fight club is set up in the basement of a pub. In the last shot of the film, while the skyscrapers of the credit card companies are being blown up, Where Is My Mind? to hear from the pixies . This scene was voted number 1 of the "Most Magic Music Moments in Movies" by the music broadcaster MTV in early 2008 as part of the MTV Masters Magic Music Moments in Movies program .



When Fight Club was released in October 1999, critics were divided on the film; The portrayal of violence in particular did not meet with universal approval after the Columbine High School rampage in April of that year. Roger Ebert, for example, called it a “fascist big-star movie” and “macho porn” and only gave it two out of four possible stars.

The film was seen by many critics as a satirical examination of the consumerism prevalent in Western societies . The New York Times, for example, rated it better than American Beauty , which appeared that year and won five Academy Awards . The transformation of the anti-materialist fight clubs into "Project Chaos" under the leadership of Tyler Durden was assumed to include not only fascist motives but also nihilistic , anarchist and Buddhist elements. Parallels were also drawn between Tyler Durden and his "Project Mayhem", which was supposed to bring about a revolutionary collapse of the system through bomb attacks on credit card companies, and the unabomber Theodore Kaczynski with his rejection of Western society. Commercially, Fight Club wasn't a huge success at first. With a budget of 63 million US dollars (excluding marketing costs), he managed to place himself in first place on the box office hit parade in the first week after publication, but the total US box office revenue was only 37 million US dollars. Although the film was successful outside of the United States, adding nearly $ 64 million more to it, it was viewed as a failure, forcing then- 20th Century Fox studio boss Bill Mechanic to resign. According to its own information, Mechanics had a personal argument with the owner of the studio, Rupert Murdoch . However, with the release on DVD , the film later became a great commercial success. This was favored by the extensive equipment of the first publication: On two DVDs there was extensive additional material such as unpublished scenes, trailers, Internet spots and comments by director David Fincher, Brad Pitt and Helena Bonham Carter.


“The film reveals the ambitious desire to bring about a synthesis of large-scale Hollywood production and European auteur cinema in order to create something third, completely new. A respectable undertaking despite its failure. "

“A frag grenade from film that detonates precisely between the thighs of gossip and commerce, high gloss and Hollywood society. [...] With 'Fight Club' Fincher has broken down the cinema that we know into its components in order to offer something new in the same breath. Above all anarchy. "

- Roland Huschke : Cinema

"Seldom has it been more effectively demonstrated how disorientation and weariness with life can lead to fascism."

- Werner Herpell : Rhein-Zeitung

"Of course the anarchist farce is deeply cynical and inhuman - but only because the society it caricatures is."

- Olaf Schneekloth : Spiegel Online


Academy Awards 2000

  • Nomination in the “Best Sound Editing” category for Ren Klyce , Richard Hymns

Brit Awards 2000

  • Nomination in the category "Best Soundtrack"

Empire Awards 2000

MTV Movie Awards 2000

  • Nomination in the "Best Fight Scene" category for Edward Norton (for fighting himself in his boss's office)

Online Film Critics Society Awards 2000

  • Nominations in the categories “Best Film”, “Best Actor” for Edward Norton, “Best Director” for David Fincher , “Best Film Editing” for James Haygood and “Best Adapted Screenplay” for Jim Uhls

Online Film Critics Society Awards 2001

  • OFCS Award in the categories "Best DVD", "Best DVD Commentary" and "Best Bonus Material on a DVD"

The German Film and Media Assessment FBW in Wiesbaden awarded the film the rating particularly valuable.


  • Svenja Tauber, Elisabeth Pauza: … everything you wanted to be, I am! - Fight Club . In: Heidi Möller, Stephan Doering (eds.): Batman and other heavenly creatures - Another 30 film characters and their mental disorders. Springer Medizin Verlag, Heidelberg 2010, ISBN 978-3-642-12738-0 , pp. 181-194.
  • Anke Steinborn: Fight Club. Mind games and excessive experience . In: Anke Steinborn: The neo-actionist departure. On the aesthetics of the “American Way of Life” Bertz + Fischer, Berlin 2014, ISBN 978-3-86505-391-6 , pp. 90–144
  • Ulli Armbrust: Ancient martial arts as a model for the film "Fight Club" by David Fincher . GRIN Verlag, Munich 2015, ISBN 978-3-668-86082-7 .

Web links

Individual evidence

  1. ^ Certificate of Release for Fight Club . Voluntary self-regulation of the film industry , February 2013 (PDF; test number: 83 310-b V).
  2. ^ Fight Club (1999) . In: .
  3. Tony Reeves: The Worldwide Guide to Movie Locations , Third Revised and expanded edition March 2006, Titan Books, London, p. 141. ISBN 978-1-84023-992-8 . (English)
  4. Tony Reeves: The Worldwide Guide to Movie Locations, Third Revised and expanded edition March 2006 . Titan Books, London 2006, ISBN 978-1-84023-499-2 , pp. 53 .
  5. ^ Fight Club. In: German dubbing file , accessed on April 17, 2020 .
  6. movie connections . In: .
  7. Maren Koetsier: 6 Mind-Blowing Easter Eggs Hidden in Famous Movies. In: November 4, 2013, accessed October 10, 2015 .
  8. ^ Simon Jablonski: Edward Norton: I wrote Wes a letter about Rushmore and that's how we met. In: The Independent . May 18, 2012, archived from the original ; Retrieved on October 23, 2016 : "'We were making Fight Club when Bottle Rocket came out,' Norton remembers. 'Brad [Pitt] and I were so obsessed with it that we kept trying to slip references to Bottle Rocket into Fight Club and [David] Fincher kept saying, “I know what that is, stop it!”' “
  9. ^ Fight Club Box Office Statistics
  10. In 10th place in the IMDb (as of January 31, 2019)
  11. ^ Fight Club Easter Egg - Hidden Message at Start . In: . (As of November 3, 2012)
  12. Maren Koetsier: Julie Taymor and David Fincher are developing "Fight Club" rock opera, according to author Chuck Palahniuk. In: film starts . July 13, 2015, accessed October 10, 2015 .
  13. ^ Charley Reed: Fight Club: An Exploration of Buddhism . In: Journal of Religion and Film . University of Nebraska Omaha . Volume 11. Issue 2. October 8, 2016.
  14. ^ Roland Huschke: Fight Club (1999). In: Cinema . Retrieved October 10, 2015 .
  15. Werner Herpell: Brad Pitt is beaten. In: Rhein-Zeitung . November 8, 1999, accessed October 10, 2015 .
  16. Olaf Schneekloth: Healing Self-Destruction. In: Spiegel Online . November 8, 1999, accessed October 10, 2015 .
  17. ^ Fight Club . In: FBW . German Film and Media Rating (FBW), accessed on January 22, 2018 .