This film is based on a real story that took place in Big Bay, Michigan in the Upper Peninsula. It’s where the film was shot as well. Many of the locations in the movie, the bar, the courtroom, even the lawyer’s office/home were all actual places involved in the original case.
Towards the end of the film, Ray tells Louis , “You have been a participant in the biggest interdimensional cross rip since the Tunguska Blast of 1909!”
This is an actual reference to the Tunguska Event, which occurred on the morning of June 30, 1908. In Central Russia, near the Stony Tunguska River, an explosion occurred that was over 1,000 times more powerful than the Atomic Bomb dropped on Hiroshima. The sound of the blast was heard as far as England, and it is estimated to have knocked down over 80 million trees.
Even though it’s recorded as an “impact event” no crater was made. Many theories have been presented from it being a UFO crash or a meteor impact. The more likely answer was that a comet or asteroid exploded in midair before it could impact the surface, but no official explanation has ever been discovered.
Before the role of Benjamin was given to Dustin Hoffman, Robert Redford was up for it. Director Mike Nichols said he couldn’t have it because he didn’t think Redford could play a loser.
Redford said, “I can play a loser.”
Nichols asked, “Oh yeah? When’s the last time you stuck out with a girl?”
Redford just said “What?”
This is the only Horror / Science Fiction film that actor Humphrey Bogart ever made. He said about it:
“This is one of the pictures that made me march in to Warner Bros. Studio Chief Jack L. Warner and ask for more money again. You can’t believe what this one was like. I had a part that somebody like Bela Lugosi or Boris Karloff should have played. I was this doctor, brought back to life, and the only thing that nourished this poor guy was blood. If it had been Jack Warner’s blood or Harry Warner’s or Sam Warner’s maybe I wouldn’t have minded as much. The trouble was, they were drinking mine and I was making this stinking movie.”
The twist coming at roughly 3/4 of the way into the movie definitely leaves a very strong impression on the viewer. Because mostly it was unsuspecting, and the clues were all there in front of our faces. These days this kind of twist ending is very commonplace, but at the same time it still comes as a surprise to many people who view the movie for the first, second or even third time. The nature of Tyler Durden’s true identity definitely takes its toll on us revealing the hidden wickedness of this very admired character.
If he really is a simply a manifestation of the Narrator’s ID, then that means as far as characters go, he is all impulse. That means no character development, no real sympathy for anybody outside of himself, constantly uses people to his advantage, and in the end becomes independent of the very mind which created him in this case the Narrator’s. This is it this point the story that the line between good and evil is truly drawn. Not only do you know Tyler Durden’s darker motivations, or the fact that you see Durden’s darker nature at work, the Narrator finally becomes the hero of the story. Not just as a bystander, because he realizes that he is the one at fault.
2. False suffering of the Narrator
Initially this movie tricks us into following the sympathy of our unnamed narrator. Because it is from his mind in which the persona of Tyler Durden comes to reality. He believes that he is a slave against the system that the world that he lived in lied to him etc. But look at his environment though. He can afford a major apartment, in a major city, and definitely has an upper middle-class and very well-paying job. Yet he rents the evicted house on Paper Street becomes the base of operations for Project Mayhem.
In short, the narrator is just a rich white person who is pretending to be poor. He’s not in it to lead a revolution and set people free, he’s doing it because he’s bored. You see this in a lot of David Fincher movies. You certainly see it in films like Gone Girl, and The Game. This seems to be a repeating theme in Fincher movies.
3. False Philosophy
What makes us first attracted to the ideals of Tyler Durden himself represents are the very same ideals that the narrator himself feels attracted to. Because “I am free in all the ways you are not”. When you first meet Tyler during his philosophies are very parallel to those of Buddhism. He is a very anti-consumerism, anti….shall we say “moderate economic status” in the world. The Narrator seeks liberation from his “prison”, and like the Narrator, we totally buy into Tyler’s pitch.
But this philosophy ultimately proves to be a well-thought-out, well organized, lie. It escalates from a kind of Zen Buddhism, then eventually to a form of male therapy which is Fight Club , which then becomes Project Mayhem. Project Mayhem is under the guise of setting people free, but the truth is it’s petty domestic terrorism. While burdens motivations or plans for destroying the credit card buildings and erasing the debt record efficiently to start would be revolution, there’s no way no way at all he would’ve been able to know if somebody wasn’t hurt in the process.
You don’t have to be a civil engineer to realize the destroying buildings of those sizable portions wouldn’t result in a few casualties.
4. Perfect Physique
Durden presents himself as the spokesman for the average citizen, but just look at his physique and compare it to the physiques of all the other members of Fight Club which later becomes Project Mayhem. Broadly speaking Tyler Durden is almost perfect in his physique . It’s almost as though he himself is a false representation of philosophy the Fight Club itself is represented on. And the very face of consumerism. If you watch the movie time, he has almost intimidating look. Whereas the Narrator’s physique becomes more and more frail as the film progresses. Tyler’s look in the Narrator’s imagination is a lie. What society wants to see as perfection. As Tyler puts it, “People see themselves as they’d like to be.”
5. The worth of human life.
How Tyler Durden sees the worth of humanity can easily be seen in two things. First, his method in which he makes soap. It is literally recycled human waste. This could be served as a metaphor of how Durden himself actually views the rest of humanity. As cogs in the machine that is society. Which he wants to destroy. The second is in how he views the “space monkeys” of Project Mayhem. By using Fight Club, he essentially strips them of their individuality. They all have shaved heads they all dress alike they all talk similarly and especially in the case of Bob. He does not truly believe in any individuality because as he put it, “in project mayhem we have no names.”