Generally favorable reviews - based on 35 Critics

Critic score distribution:
  1. Positive: 23 out of 35
  2. Negative: 2 out of 35
  1. Delivers a sucker punch to the audience and then pulls the rug out from under it. It is sensational. It is also grimly funny.
  2. What's most troubling about this witless mishmash of whiny, infantile philosophizing and bone-crunching violence is the increasing realization that it actually thinks it's saying something of significance.
  3. A knockout...So feverish is Fight Club...that thermometer contact might make mercury shatter.
  4. It's the rawest, most hot-blooded, provocatively audacious, dangerous movie to come of out Hollywood this year.
  5. 75
    As a piece of storytelling, Fight Club is a bit of a dud: It's a good 15 minutes too long, and the tension doesn't build the way you wish it would.
  6. Reviewed by: Jay Carr
    Begins with that invigoratingly nervy and imaginative buzz. But its chic indictment of empty materialist values fizzles.
  7. It's visually surrealistic, acted with integrity, so brutal in spots that I averted my eyes.
  8. Reviewed by: Mike Clark
    It's fun to talk about...but the price you pay is enduring its excesses and pummeled-home thematic points.
  9. 50
    But the second act is pandering and the third is trickery, and whatever Fincher thinks the message is, that's not what most audience members will get.
  10. Undermines its serious undertones with an avalanche of smirky cynicism designed to flatter the hipper-than-thou fantasies of adolescent moviegoers.
  11. Grueling and bleak, but not unintelligent...although it's hardly groundbreaking just because everyone's face gets pulpy.
  12. 80
    A brilliantly realized series of sucker punches, a philosophical howl disguised as a muscular guy movie.
  13. 89
    Fight Club's dirty little secret is it's one of the best comedies of the decade.
  14. It assaults us with violence, brutality, sexual confusion and anarchy and has enough bruising, punishing humor to keep us laughing with relief.
  15. If, as Fincher has said, this movie is supposed to be funny, then the joke's on us.
  16. Reviewed by: Gemma Files
    It always surprises, never bores. It's also just damn good, on every possible level -- so go see it. Now.
  17. Reviewed by: David Rooney
    Bold, inventive, sustained adrenaline rush of a movie.
  18. Reviewed by: Robert Horton
    Never less than dazzling to look at, and the scorching humor keeps it alive from scene to scene.
  19. The sardonic, testosterone-fueled science fiction of Fight Club touches a raw nerve.
  20. A provocative experience that lights you up even as it brutalizes you. And I don't even like Brad Pitt very much.
  21. 60
    On a purely visual level, it's the most powerful and viscerally exciting movie to come out of Hollywood this year. Which doesn't mean that it's all good.
  22. 50
    But imagination and energy are often not enough. On balance, this is the dumbest of the entries in Hollywood's anti-consumerist new wave.
  23. 50
    This malevolently gleeful extremely funny, surprisingly well- acted, and boldly least until its steel-and-chrome soufflé falls apart.
  24. This exercise in mainstream masochism, macho posturing, and designer-grunge fascism is borderline ridiculous. But it also happens to be David Fincher's richest movie.
  25. Fight Club is to intelligent men what Catherine Breillat's "Romance" is to intelligent women -- an insult.
  26. Reviewed by: Tom Keogh
    This much-anticipated but terribly underwhelming black comedy represents a seriously squandered opportunity.
  27. 66
    Despite terrific comic acting...and an atomic first hour, Fight Club makes a few wrong turns and ends up lost itself.
  28. It's a genuine shocker - a dazzler of a film - a hellishly funny picture.
  29. 75
    Fight Club badly wants to be "A Clockwork Orange" for the millennium - and succeeds to a surprising extent until director David Fincher ends up sucker-punching the audience.
  30. 63
    Keeps filmgoers wondering what will happen next even as they are repulsed by what's happening in front of them.
  31. 100
    Fight Club -- cue the blurb machine -- is a knockout.
  32. 100
    Pulls you in, challenges your prejudices, rocks your world and leaves you laughing in the face of an abyss. It's alive, all right. It's also an uncompromising American classic.
  33. Reviewed by: Richard Schickel
    Both actors are excellent--but there's something conventionally gimmicky about the way it plays its reality/unreality game.
  34. Reviewed by: David Ansen
    The most incendiary movie to come out of Hollywood in a long time. It's a mess, but one worth fighting about.
  35. Reviewed by: Graham Verdon
    Frighteningly intelligent and visually stunning film.
User Score

Universal acclaim- based on 941 Ratings

User score distribution:
  1. Negative: 8 out of 215
  1. Oct 28, 2010
    Fight Club is multi-faceted movie about a man who is deeply unsatisfied with his life in the modern age, even with all the trappings ofFight Club is multi-faceted movie about a man who is deeply unsatisfied with his life in the modern age, even with all the trappings of success that much of our society is based on, and decides to go off the beaten path to find his own personal satisfaction. From that point on the movie spirals out of control and into the abyss. This is a good thing. The movie holds many meanings and shows the characters in favorable and unfavorable ways. It does not try to cast things in a typical good and evil view point, nor does it say whether the choices the protagonist and the rest of the cast make are sound ones. One of the things it does do is look into the nature of our past, viewing the structure of our society and analyzing why we do what we do to live. It isn't until the narrator (Edward Norton) begins to destroy himself that he finally comes to realize what matters to him. That is when he meets two important characters, Marla Singer and Tyler Durden. It is during this time that the narrator escapes from his normal life by hosting with Tyler an underground fight club that evolved from the two just fighting outside of a local bar. Taking in Tyler's view on life, which is somewhat refreshing and scary at the same time, they form a close bond strongly resembling a married couple. The two do everything together and the narrator begins to emulate Tyler more and more, all the while the fight club grows stronger and stronger until it has become this cult-like phenomenon with Tyler and the narrator as leaders making rules for conducting fight club. Anarchy and non-conformity is their message, which I believe is meant to underscore the irony of fight club and their non-conformist, fight the man attitude. As the group evolves into something more dangerous, this irony becomes more apparent in the way those who once questioned the established authority, now blindly follow their "non-conformist" new group. Its been a little over a decade since Fight Club "enlightened" me, but it still gives me the same conflicting feelings about its message and the nature of humanity in general. There are those who would take it at its face value and see nothing but frustrated, grown men beating each other senselessly, and that's a shame because there is definitely much more going on then that. David Fincher has crafted an excellent movie: it's disgustingly stylish in its execution...almost too much, if that's possible. The sound track, done by the Dust Brothers burrowed it's way into my brain and never left. The movie would not be the same without it. As far as the actors performances, Ed Norton and Brad Pitt both have a strong rapport and the scenes come off naturally, while Helena Bonham Carter's Marla is hauntingly tragic, and filled with a desperate, but subtle sadness to her. At the time of the original screening this movie polarized people into the two camps of love or hate, due to it's ability to offended or amaze, but I wouldn't have it any other way. Too often are movies eager to please. This one strives to offend and cause questions...and I love it for that. Full Review »
  2. Mar 8, 2012
    Great film; negative reviews here often reflect a sloppy or down-right non-existent understanding of the movie. Case in point: "..spend twoGreat film; negative reviews here often reflect a sloppy or down-right non-existent understanding of the movie. Case in point: "..spend two hours wondering why the characters would rather punch each other than do something useful with their time and energy." - Alexander G. Now obviously, anyone who was actually attentive to the movie knows that they DID do something useful, and they fought for a reason. Full Review »
  3. Jun 1, 2012
    This is my favorite type of film. Its one that challenges you to look at things differently, and it does so with a satiric, yet brutal tone.This is my favorite type of film. Its one that challenges you to look at things differently, and it does so with a satiric, yet brutal tone. Watching it for the first time, it wont go over well for you or anybody for that matter. Though, watch it a second time, and again and again.Then you will realize that everything it is telling you is true. Full Review »