The Great Gatsby - DVD movie review


I have to say that I liked ‘The Great Gatsby’ a lot. I still don’t care for the story itself, but the film was enjoyable to watch and it’s the only Baz Luhrmann film I’ve been able to sit through pleasurably. (Normally I find that watching a Baz Luhrmann film is akin to watching a manic child run around the room jangling keys.)

I hadn’t read ‘The Great Gatsby’ novel since high school and just remember hating it. And I didn’t remember much of it because I read it for homework, but I didn’t really follow the actual events. I remembered that Gatsby had a house, that Daisy had the green light across the water, and that there was a car accident. Aside from that, I didn’t remember much else. In seeing the film, I was able to understand the actual events better.

I liked the look of ‘The Great Gatsby’ a lot. It seems to me that it’s a recent film convention to suck much of the color out of a picture in post-production, oddly making many new films almost sepia-toned/B&W. (See the first two Harry Potter films versus the final four for an example of this. The longer the Harry Potter films series ran, the more-and-more each film seemed devoid of color.) I’m glad to say that ‘The Great Gatsby’ is the exact opposite. It is bright and gleaming, with almost too much color, like ‘Oz the Great and Powerful’. I enjoyed this, though.

I really liked Joel Edgerton as Tom in this film. He did a good job playing an odious character.

Blink and you’ll miss Luhrmann’s cameo as a waiter about halfway through the film.


I really hated that Baz Luhrmann used contemporary R&B/rap music, like Jay-Z and others. And there’s even some of that stupid auto-tune voice in the film. Ugh. However, I greatly appreciated the inclusion of ‘Rhapsody in Blue’ by George Gershwin.

Prepare to start calling everyone “old sport” from now on because it will be stuck in your head after watching the film. Gatsby says “old sport” at least 400 times in the film. But I remember him doing so in the novel, too, so at least it’s accurate.

Personally, I don’t think that Carey Mulligan was a good Daisy. She’s a good actress, but I just don’t think she’s pretty enough to be the character Daisy. I mean, she’s got to be so attractive and memorable that you can believe that Gatsby pines for her for five years, attains his phenomenal wealth for, and throws lavish parties every weekend solely for her. And I just didn’t believe that while watching the movie.