The Great Gatsby trailer gives us insight to Baz Luhrmann’s interpretation and display of one of the most anticipated films of the year (falling second and third only to the Dark Knight Rises and Django Unchained of course). [Ed. Note - PROMETHEUSSSSSSSSS!!!!!!!!!!!!!!]
In tribute to Luhrmann’s forever theatrical style, this review must take form in an over the top theatrical, open letter to Luhrmann himself.
Dear Mr. Luhrmann,
I write this letter as a faithful fan of the works of the grand and late Francis Scott Key Fitzgerald and upon watching the trailer for the Great Gatsby, I am fairly certain he is turning in his grave.
Let me state that my dismay and disapproval is not without deep thought and analysis. There are several positives sir. For one, the visuals are nothing short of flawless and the same can be said for the costumes. You have very successfully captured what the 1920s can be and have been defined as: excessive, extravagant, and exhilarating. The cast is a strong one. The casting of Bollywood legend Amitabh Bachchan to play Meyer Wolfsheim is beyond brilliant. Joel Edgerton and Isla Fisher will not disappoint in their supporting roles and Leonardo DiCaprio is a sure Oscar contender (chuckle?) in any worthy film he leads in.
Though plausible, your efforts to encompass Gatsby’s character traits have fallen short so far. It leads one to question how well you might know F. Scott Fitzgerald’s most popular novel to date. Now I understand that your film is an adaptation of the film subject only to the inner workings of your mind, but are there not some things that you must stay true to? It cannot be argued that some of the themes of the Great Gatsby include glamour, exclusiveness, vibrancy, and luxury-but is subtleness not the very essence of the man known as Jay Gatsby? He is the dark prince, but a subtle one. Like most main characters in Fitzgerald’s works, Gatsby has a complexed view on prestige, money, and status. While all of these things are of the utmost importance, again Gatsby’s character is based on a calculated subtleties. Your interpretation of Gatsby leaves no room for what avid fans of the Great Gatsby would call the very core of Jay Gatsby’s being. The parts of the trailer that do try to accurately portray the man known as Gatsby, go overboard with theatrics. Let’s take for example the scene where Daisy (elegantly played by Carey Mulligan) is talking to the dashing Gatsby telling him she is glad to see him again. It is true that Gatsby has complexes in the way he talks to and thinks of Daisy, but with all due respect sir, a constipated and stuttering Leonardo DiCaprio does not represent what you intended for it to. The problem Mr. Luhrmann, is the over the top theatrics that have plagued several of your films.
Ultimately, to successfully take a lasting stance on the trailer one must know what does the film aspire to be? A colorful musical following in the footsteps of Moulin Rouge! ? A modern take on an older piece of literature, in the manner of Romeo + Juliet? Judging from the trailer there doesn’t seem to be a clear direction. Personally, the only work of yours I have thoroughly enjoyed was Moulin Rouge! . I was desperately hoping that the Great Gatsby would be redemption for the underwhelming film, Australia. I recognize that a remake of the very straightforward 1974 Great Gatsby film by Francis Coppola and Jack Clayton would be unnecessary and even perhaps boring–but surely there is middle ground in telling a tale from the 1920s. While the movie does not have to be conventional, I pray to god the soundtrack doesn’t feature Kanye West and Jay-Z songs.
Someone who has actually read the Great Gatsby
In all seriousness, I do still look forward to watching the movie. I am hopeful that it is just an underwhelming trailer.
A few things I look forward to observing…
- The on-screen relationship between best friends Tobey Maguire and Leonardo DiCaprio
- In the end, will Leo really have been the best choice to play Jay Gatsby?
- Does Baz Luhrmann continue to be excessive in his directing style? Or is he able to finally produce a movie where he stops at the amount that is just right.
- Carey Mulligan’s performance
- How will Nick Carraway’s role be utilized in Luhrmann’s adaptation?
- Will Luhrmann have ruined another literary classic?
Patiently waiting for Christmas Day, for more than the usual reasons this year…