Choke

This year has been fantastic for movies. Cloverfield. Speed Racer. Dark Knight. I just got back from my second viewing of Pineapple Express. Fantastic! Summer is winding down, though. The air has become chill. And all the kids are back in town for college. The year is not quite over, but there's still one movie left that I eagerly anticipate. That's Choke.

9 years ago, Fight Club introduced me to the satirical dark writing of Chuck Palahniuk. Throughout those 9 years, I've read all his novels, watched Fight Club a billion times, and even seen him in person. Fight Club made me an instant fan. It brought my from cinema into novels and even fosters some creative writing from time to time. I'd probably be playing video games on the bus if not for Fight Club, really.

Anywho, 9 years later, another of Chuck's books has finally made it to theaters. Choke opens September 26th in select theaters, but some people have already seen it at various film festivals. And from what it looks like, there are some haters out there. The negative reviews seem to have a similar tone... 'It ain't Fight Club'. Well, it's funny you should mention that...

Fight Club has a very distinct tone throughout the movie. It's a very dark dank vision of society and the people around you. Putting on a polite show for humanity, despite feeling completely empty and emotionless. Then starting to break out of your shell just a little with growing confidence in yourself as a person. This distinct thought process is beautifully translated from the book into film. When I read the novel, I feel like I'm inside the main character's head. The same way you are in most of the film.

After I read Fight Club, I went right on to the next book. I read Survivor, Choke, Lullaby, Invisible Monsters, and Diary. Each one carried this same tone. Each novel placed you deep into the main character's thought process, feelings and emotions. As I read each novel, I felt completely in tune with the main character. Choke felt very much like Fight Club. Only a different setting, different character background, different vices.

3 months ago, I saw Chuck Palahniuk in Minneapolis for the release of his recent novel, Snuff. During the event, they played the trailer for Choke. I was excited. Even more excited than I had been from just being at the event to begin with.

However, after viewing the trailer, I felt very conflicted. It was absolutely nothing like how I pictured it in my mind. As you can see for yourself, the tone is completely comical. poppy. funny on the outside. Complete opposite emotions I felt when reading the book. Not Like Fight Club.

So, I watched the trailer and the red band trailer a bunch of times and went back to read the book. I read the book from the mindset of a comedy movie. Maybe I just read it wrong? Perhaps Fight Club was pushing my expectations into the deep dark mood because the movie effected me in such a way. Maybe this is a strictly comedic book.

Naw. The timing is totally off in the book. The focus is clearly the emotions and thinking of the main character, Victor Mancini. The little one liner jokes in the trailer are completely moved around to make it a comedy.

But! Then again, these are fricken trailers. Trailers are created by production staff to promote the movie to as wide an audience as possible. Thinking back to 9 years ago, I thought Fight Club was garbage from the TV spots I saw. I only saw it later on DVD when my friends made me watch it. The overall feeling of the book or movie can't be easily illustrated in a 3 minute clip.

I'm still totally stoked for Choke, though. I think I'm going into the film with a unique perspective that I have never had with any movie I've seen before. I think this'll be the first movie where I've read the book way in advance from the film being announced. It's exciting to see the movie adaptation clash with my imagination. For some reason I imagined the characters a lot skinnier... Especially Paige Marshall.

4 more weeks!

Check out both trailers on the Official Site. The can be a little tricky to find though. Go to the restricted area, then go to videos.




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