The following is in response to the book Fight Club, by Chuck Palahniuk.
The fourteenth book that I read this year was the raunchy, nerve-rattling tale of an unamed protagonist and his friend Tyler Durden. This was one of those cases, while perusing Barnes and Noble, hungry for words and plot and story, that I came across a book for which I’d seen the movie adaptation. I find it interesting that a lot of people that fall in love with a writer and their mind-children, like Chuck Palahniuk and Tyler Durden, are often disappointed when the film does not do the book justice. In some ways I feel the same—Blade Runner wasn’t quite the same animal as the book it was based on, Do Androids Dream of Electric Sheep. But then again, that’s kind of the point isn’t it? Films and books are two different animals and though they are often best when they are similar, almost twins, it doesn’t make me rage at the screen in the theatre.
With that said, the film Fight Club does the book a great justice…for the most part. The plot of the book is followed to a T up until the end; in the film the narrator seems to have beaten Tyler, though Tyler’s plot to blow up a slew of buildings while Where is My Mind by The Pixies blares in the background, however in the book the narrator is in an institute recovering from shooting himself and it is obvious that Tyler Durden is still a part of his psyche. That’s right—spoiler alert—Tyler Durden and the narrator are the same person. If you have never seen the film or read the book then the revelation when you figure this out is a substantial one. It’s what makes the story so good. When I was reading the book, knowing this all along from having seen the film, my quirky mind kept juxtaposing Tyler and the Narrator to Einhorn and Finkle in the movie Ace Ventura Pet Detective. Einhorn is Finkle! Finkle is Einhorn!