"Fight Club" is the most frankly and cheerfully fascist big-star movie since "Death Wish,"

a celebration of violence in which the heroes write themselves a license to drink, smoke, screw and beat one another up.

Sometimes, for variety, they beat up themselves. It's macho porn -- the sex movie Hollywood has been moving toward for years,

in which eroticism between the sexes is replaced by all-guy locker-room fights.

Women, who have had a lifetime of practice at dealing with little-boy posturing, will instinctively see through it; 

men may get off on the testosterone rush. The fact that it is very well made and has a great first act certainly clouds the issue.

Edward Norton stars as a depressed urban loner filled up to here with angst.