F. Scott Fitzgerald’s The Great Gatsby is considered a classic of American literature. It is widely studied in schools and universities and praised all over the world. The book explores themes of wealth, power, love, and the disillusionment of the American Dream. The story is set in the 1920s, during the ‘Roaring Twenties,’ a time of great prosperity and excess for the wealthy elite. Baz Luhrmann’s adaptation of The Great Gatsby, however, ditches that sense of morally grey critique for an over-the-top romantic drama.
How to Download The Great Gatsby
You can download the film from a digital store. You can also stream it. Click on the Download button at the end of this review and make your choice. If you want to see more films with Leonardo DiCaprio, check him out also in Titanic, The Wolf of Wall Street, or Don’t Look Up.
The Movie Review
The summer of 1922 is painted before us like a vibrant tapestry, full of color and style into a story woven together by the curious and unsuspecting narrator, Nick Carraway. As he becomes ensnared in the opulent world of his enigmatic neighbor, Jay Gatsby, he finds himself drawn into a dizzying spiral of lavish parties and forbidden desires. Gatsby, a man shrouded in mystery, throws his extravagant soirées in a desperate attempt to recapture the heart of his lost love, Daisy Buchanan.
As Nick delves deeper into the lives of Gatsby and his affluent associates, secrets of their past begin to unfold before him, revealing the true nature of Gatsby’s affections and the unraveling of his grand romance.
Baz Luhrmann’s direction in The Great Gatsby is notable for its flashy and vibrant style, which adds a new level of visual spectacle to the story. His use of vibrant colors, energetic music, and fast-paced editing create a sense of energy and excitement that captures the spirit of the Roaring Twenties. The film also showcases the grandeur and opulence of the elite lifestyle, with beautiful costumes and extravagant parties.
The script deviates, however, from the book in a way that detracts from the overall impact of the story. The film loses the critical commentary on the lives of the wealthy and powerful, and the corruption of the American Dream that is present in the book.
Instead, the film focuses more on a romantic story of love and loss, with grand gestures and a more simplified narrative. The deviation from the book’s script and the focus on flashy style over substance, came as a detriment to the film as it lost its depth and the complexity of the themes and characters presented in the book. The novel’s chaotic and gritty vision of the lives of the elite is exchanged for a more glossy and superficial portrayal.
Like a masterfully orchestrated ensemble, Leonardo DiCaprio as Jay Gatsby, Tobey Maguire as Nick Carraway, Carey Mulligan as Daisy Buchanan, and Joel Edgerton as Tom Buchanan all deliver powerful and nuanced performances that bring the characters to life.
They expertly balance between being realistic and fun, infusing a sense of stylish campiness that is fitting for the flamboyant world of the film. DiCaprio in particular, delivers a captivating performance as Gatsby, imbuing the character with a sense of mystery, charm, and vulnerability. He brings depth and emotional nuance to the role, making the audience feel the unrequited love for Daisy and the longing for the past.
Additionally, Amitabh Bachchan has a minor role as Meyer Wolfsheim, Gatsby’s associate and he shines in it, bringing a sense of gravitas and authority to the role and making the most of his limited screen time.
The camera work is striking in all its frantic glory. It skillfully captures the excess and opulence of the elite lifestyle. Baz Luhrmann, the director, is masterful in his control of the camera, moving it around the beautifully designed sets to showcase the full extent of the lavishness and grandeur of the world of the wealthy. The camera moves swiftly, capturing the energy and excitement of the parties and the fast-paced lifestyle of the characters.
The film’s music is also noteworthy, being both era-accurate and filled with a great selection of swing and jazz songs that add to the atmosphere of the film. The music is used to great effect, setting the tone for the different scenes and adding to the sense of energy and excitement. It also helps to convey the emotions of the characters and the themes of the story, making it an essential component of the film’s style.
The Great Gatsby is a visually stunning and stylish retelling of F. Scott Fitzgerald’s classic novel. The film’s camera work and music are noteworthy, capturing the energy and excitement of the Roaring Twenties and adding to the overall atmosphere of the film.
Additionally, the performances of the cast, particularly Leonardo DiCaprio as Jay Gatsby, are powerful and nuanced. However, the film’s deviation from the book’s script, which focused more on a romantic story of love and loss, detracts from the overall impact of the story. The film loses the critical commentary on the lives of the wealthy and powerful, and the corruption of the American Dream that is present in the book.
- Visually stunning and stylish, with vibrant colors and fast-paced editing
- Strong performances from the cast, particularly Leonardo DiCaprio as Jay Gatsby
- Era-accurate music that adds to the overall atmosphere of the film
- Glossy and superficial portrayal of the lives of the elite
- Deviations from the book didn’t fully adapt the complexity of the story and characters
- Style over substance