How Fight Club’s messages could be seen as a good thing
In 1999 David Fincher directed a book adaptation of Chuck Palahniuk's ‘Fight Club’ which at the time of the films release was seen as a far out controversial film that concerned its key messages with that of existentialism, nihilism, hedonism, masculinity, violence and identity to name a few. Although the film can be perceived as having negative messages and themes there are several underlying tones on the contrary that can almost be seen as a rallying call to blue collar members of society through the ideologies portrayed by our main protagonists.
One of the key concepts and overlying theme of Fight Club is the idea of Late Consumerism namely in America but can be transferred to most western styles of living at the time and how its effects on society are quite negative.
In 1968 Jean Baudrillard’s ‘The system of objects (1)’ in his thesis he suggests that industrialisation has become “the chief basis of the social order and of its internal classifications” meaning how society has set its class status through consumer objects that has a link to behaviour and groups of people to dictate how people in society live their lives.
This relates to how blue collar people in society have been told and have had their lives dictated to them through consumerism and America’s attachment to a consumer culture at that time.
The main protagonist in Fight Club known as ‘The Narrator’ who is best described as “an exhausted and numb narcoleptic/insomniac suffering from the failed promise of self-fulfillment in a brand-name, corporate driven consumer society” (David, 2002, p. 504.) is depicted as the epitome of a major consumer and a blue collar member of society describing himself in the opening 5 minutes of the film as “A slave to the IKEA nesting instinct” an defining materialist view in western society where he states within the scene “What kind of dining set best defines me as a person?” which shows in some degree the battle of identity he faces while being a consumer in western culture and trying to keep up and conform with the demands of modern consumerism. This ties in with the themes of identity throughout the film in the thesis on consumerism by scholar Lockwood “society's dependence on consumerism is constantly portrayed through makeovers where an individual gains a plethora of confidence through a modification of their sense of dress thus we live in a world defined almost entirely by what we own so we will change our identity from time to time” this ties in with the Narrator's lack of identity and trying to gain fulfillment or self worth through objects and brands.
The films inciting incident in which his apartment explodes destroying all his possessions with no options in terms of friends or family he turns to...