Welcome to The Firewall's movie review of The Great Gatsby. Based on the 1925 F. Scott Fitzgerald novel of the same name and written as a screenplay by Baz Luhrmann and Craig Pearce, The Great Gatsby is a romantic drama and tells the story of a mysterious and eccentric millionaire who's passionate and obsessive love for a married woman controls his life.
The Great Gatsby reunites director Baz Luhrmann (Moulin Rouge,Australia) and Leonardo DiCaprio (do I really need to give examples?) for the first time since William Shakespeare's Romeo and Juliet back in 1996 and also stars Joel Edgerton,Tobey Maguire,Carey Mulligan and Isla Fisher.
Set on Long Island in the summer of 1922, we are introduced to Nick Carraway (Tobey Maguire) who is suffering from depression and alcoholism,telling a therapist about his encounter with the elusive Jay Gatsby. When urged to write down his thoughts and experiences we are taken into Nick Carraway's past as he moves to Long Island and discovers the extravagant world of the super rich.
Before seeing this movie all I knew about it was who was in it,I had seen the trailer above and I knew that it had received mixed reviews. I haven't read the book so I won't be able to compare the two for you but within the first five minutes I had been completely drawn in to the movie.
I would not be able to pick out one actor who did a bad job in The Great Gatsby.Tobey Maguire (Spider-man,Brothers) did a great job as the naive and inexperienced Nick Carraway,Joel Edgerton (Warrior) plays the jealous and unfaithful Tom Buchanan,who is the husband of the charming but vulnerable Daisy,played by Carey Mulligan (Drive). The smaller parts in the movie were instrumental in bringing this story to life and Isla Fisher,Jason Clarke and Elizabeth Debicki certainly earned their place in this cast. However, once again, the man who stole the show was Leonardo DiCaprio as Jay Gatsby, and I think I won't be alone when I say I was not surprised by this. DiCaprio has been exceptional in every role he has taken on since the beginning of his movie career. I haven't seen anything before The Basketball Diaries in 1995 but have seen almost everything since I wouldn't be able to tell you a DiCaprio movie where he hasn't shone as an incredible actor.I keep waiting for him to slip up,only because I don't believe there are any actors out there with long lasting careers who don't have films that they would rather keep hidden, but so far, in my opinion, Leonardo DiCaprio doesn't only play his roles perfectly,he chooses the perfect roles as well. OK, Leo love fest over.
The small issue I had with this movie was the editing, they did quite a poor job in certain parts of the movie where the dialogue obviously doesn't match the scene taking place,and instead of covering up these problems,they've just been left there in plain sight,so you're watching the actor's mouth but it is so far off the words you're hearing but that really is a small issue which only occurs a few times in the over two hour duration of the movie.
Specifically,what I loved about The Great Gatsby was how fantastic it looked, the way the scenes were put together, the colours and the action taking place were an absolutely pleasure to look at. Also, the criticism I heard of the music not matching the era the movie was set in, while certainly accurate, is not a criticism I can repeat here. I loved the mix of old meets new, and the music of today together with that party atmosphere was a perfect match and any other way of going about it would have taken away from the feel and impact of those scenes, I'm considering buying the soundtrack because I was so impressed with it during the movie, but I'm sure that's a matter of taste.
I have certainly waffled on for long enough here and I think it's quite clear just how I feel about The Great Gatsby. It was a pleasure to watch and though it is more than two hours long,I completely lost track of time,I thought there was an hour left when there was actually only twenty minutes or so,but I would suggest that's a sign of enjoyment more than anything else.The Great Gatsby is the type of movie that doesn't come along very often but you are always happy when they do and I would suggest that Baz Luhrmann was the perfect director to take on this project. Maybe it is a case of loving it or hating it but I loved it and judging by IMDb's rating of 7,5 and having made over $130 million at the box office in the two weeks since its release,I am not the only one who walked away feeling they had just seen something special.
The Great Gatsby gets The Firewall rating of SEE IT NOW!
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