Thoughts on MVC
MVC is a pretty loosely defined pattern which is open to (often somewhat vague) interpretations of what each of the things in MVC stand for (especially the controller). There is a great discussion of the MVC architecture with respect to GUI toolkits by Martin Fowler.
On Design Patterns and FXML
JavaFX core FXML based processing is built to be more of a toolkit rather than a complete development framework. The idea being that other frameworks could be layered on top of JavaFX and FXML and the underlying JavaFX/FXML implementations and the controllers for them would not push any kind of agenda or architectural constraints on the higher level frameworks.
As a result, there is a deliberately loose analogy and mapping of core FXML based processing and their controllers to an MVC architecture.
See JavaFX and MVP – a smörgåsbord of design patterns for further discussion.
Consider using a higher-level framework
You might benefit from adopting an "opinionated" JavaFX framework such as afterburner.fx, which utilizes controllers and FXML but provides a bit more of a rigid structured framework. Afterburner.fx follows a Model View Presenter (MVP) model. Though Afterburner.fx provides more functionality and structure than plain core JavaFX+FXML, it does so in a minimal way by adding few extra classes and APIs that you need to learn to use it.
You can try JRebirth with its custom-tailored pattern:
This is a 2-level MVC pattern, first MVC (application-level) is CSM and the second one is Mvc itself (ui-level).
- Wave for messaging and async internal event handling
- Behavior to add common code to any Component (C|S|M)
- Command to manage application commands (reusable code)
- Service to handle some long service into thread pool
- Model to manage the Model of your UI
- View to create your UI
- Controllers to handle user events
You can run the JRebirth Tour Application to learn more (Java 8 required):
java -jar JRebirthTour-3.0.0.jar
You can also run the Demo application:
java -jar JRebirthDemo-8.5.0.jar
or browse slides (slightly outdated):