Thursday, May 9, 2013

The Great Gatsby based on the 1925 novel by F. Scott Fitzgerald's was surprisingly better than I expected.  Prior to watching the screening tonight, I have spoken to a few people who have had to read the book during their high school years.  Each one did not have fond memories of the book.  But with all the hype surrounding the movie, I would be amiss to not give it a chance and I'm glad that I did.

The thing that stands out the most for me in this movie is of course the stunning visuals of the scenery and costumes of that long bygone era.  The roaring 20s as they are known, was filled with excess as the movie explains.  The movie did it great justice in this, but unfortunately fails when trying to give it a more contemporary feel.  The movie's score is by Jay Z and The Bullitts, While I'm a big fan of Jay Z's music, his and Beyonce's music often felt out of place as well as the other selections.  The acting performances by studs Leonardo DiCaprio and Tobey Maguire as Jay Gatsby and Nick Carraway was stupendous.  Other standouts in the cast include Carey Mulligan and Joel Edgerton as Daisy and Tom Buchanan.

So just what is the story about?  It's a tragic romance story which Director Baz Luhrmann seems to have an affinity for.  Considering his resume includes Romeo & Juliet as well as Moulin Rogue!.  In this movie, Jay Gatsby is a mysterious wealthy man who apparently has some old romantic ties to Daisy Buchanan who is cousin to Nick Carraway.  Nick is also old friends with Tom Buchanan husband of Daisy.  Nick gets caught between the quite complicated love triangle of Jay, Daisy and Tom and thus is the perfect narrator of the film.  The film is a great study of human nature and emotions as we see the relationships and background of Jay Gatsby unfold.  I am told the movie stays true to the book in that a lot of the lines are direct quotes from the book.

As much as there is many good things about the film, I can see that the film would not be for everyone.  I have never read the book or the countless film adaptations prior to this, but however enjoyed it.  The movie is in 3D which adds to the richness of the sets, but to be honest I can't imagine that you would gripe much if you saw it in 2D.  That said, I would still recommend this film.

The movie opens this weekend May 10th, rated PG-13, 2 hour and 23 minutes. 

Rating: 3.5 Stars out of 5.0


  • Leonardo DiCaprio as Jay Gatsby
  • Tobey Maguire as Nick Carraway
  • Carey Mulligan as Daisy Buchanan
  • Joel Edgerton as Tom Buchanan
  • Elizabeth Debicki as Jordan Baker
  • Isla Fisher as Myrtle Wilson
  • Jason Clarke as George B. Wilson
  • Amitabh Bachchan as Meyer Wolfsheim
  • Jack Thompson as Henry C. Gatz
  • Max Cullen as Owl Eyes
  • Callan McAuliffe as Young Jay Gatsby
  • Adelaide Clemens as Catherine
  • Gus Murray as Teddy Barton

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