Writers: Baz Luhrmann, Craig Pearce (Screenplay), F. Scott Fitzgerald (Novel)
Stars: Leonardo DiCaprio, Tobey Maguire, Carey Mulligan, Joel Edgerton
To me, Baz Luhrmann's 'The Great Gatsby' is as much of a train-wreck as his other critically panned film, Romeo and Juliet. I have not read the novel, but I will hazard to guess that this movie does not do the emotion of the story justice. You can see potential there, but Luhrmann focuses more on the visuals rather than the important stuff (once again). Yes, it's filled with amazing actors and a soundtrack that promised to be great. Instead, it contains uninspired performances and some of the most irritating songs to ever hit a 1920s themed movie. To me, this film was almost completely terrible.
A man named Nick Carraway (Tobey Maguire) moves to New York to become a stock-broker or something on Wall Street. His cousin is Daisy (Carey Mulligan), a beautiful girl who is married to a rich bastard named Tom (Joel Edgerton). Eventually, Nick meets a man called Gatsby (Leonardo DiCaprio), who is said to have done many amazing things. We find out that he has a history with Daisy, setting up one of the most passionless romances I've ever seen on film.
|"I'm so in love with Gatsby."|
The main character Nick Carraway is a doormat and a fool in my opinion. He idolizes Gatsby and bends over backwards for him every chance he gets. It's like he isn't even a person, he's just a walking, talking doormat. Tobey Maguire is a pretty decent actor, but once again he shows hardly any expression on his face throughout this film. All this person does is follow two people around because he has nothing better to do. I mean, come on! It's very difficult to care about a story when the main character has hardly any personality at all.
|Daisy 'feel sorry for me' Buchanan|
No matter how good the acting was, they couldn't save the dialogue from being completely devoid of passion and romance. The story itself was pretty romantic, but the deliverance was just unconvincing. I'd say that's mostly to do with Baz Luhrmann's despicable adaptation of the dialogue, but I guess the performances themselves should share some of the blame. Like I said, there was hardly any emotion from Maguire. Meanwhile, DiCaprio and Mulligan did nothing for me. The only one I liked was Joel Edgerton, but his performance was far from great.
|Jay-Z knows how to ruin a soundtrack.|
The only redeemable quality in this movie for me would have to be the costumes and occasionally the cinematography. They were fine, and at times amazing. It was also a huge letdown, because it was no more beautiful than Moulin Rouge (made 12 years ago). Ahh, this is Luhrmann's forte yet he failed miserably. The computer animation was at times despicable. In this day and age, you can't forgive such faulty special effects.
Look, the main problem is that this film couldn't make me believe anything. I couldn't see the romance, the heartbreak, or the humor anywhere. The whole thing was unforgivably boring too, with the run-time being 2 hours and 24 minutes. A lot of the scenes were filler material, and the important stuff didn't seem all that important. The story is probably amazing, but it looked pretty run of the mill on screen.
|The 'not-so-great' Gatsby|