IMDb > The Great Gatsby (2013) > Reviews & Ratings - IMDb
The Great Gatsby
Quicklinks
Top Links
trailers and videosfull cast and crewtriviaofficial sitesmemorable quotes
Overview
main detailscombined detailsfull cast and crewcompany credits
Awards & Reviews
user reviewsexternal reviewsawardsuser ratingsparents guidemessage board
Plot & Quotes
plot summarysynopsisplot keywordsmemorable quotes
Did You Know?
triviagoofssoundtrack listingcrazy creditsalternate versionsmovie connectionsFAQ
Other Info
box office/businessrelease datesfilming locationstechnical specsliterature listingsNewsDesk
Promotional
taglines trailers and videos posters photo gallery
External Links
showtimesofficial sitesmiscellaneousphotographssound clipsvideo clips

Reviews & Ratings for
The Great Gatsby More at IMDbPro »

Filter: Hide Spoilers:
Page 1 of 67:[1] [2] [3] [4] [5] [6] [7] [8] [9] [10] [11] [Next]
Index 663 reviews in total 

542 out of 768 people found the following review useful:

Stop being pretentious and enjoy a decent film.

10/10
Author: nurkeverly
10 May 2013

After seeing this film I was more than a little disgusted to see so many negative reviews. The main problem with this film I find is in the first 20-30 minutes, a common problem I spy in Luhrman films that should by no means define an entire film. Giving away nothing the film begins at a brisk and overly flamboyant pace but after a bit it hits what I like to call "Baz's golden point", slows to absolute perfection. That first half hour will leave more than a few shaking their heads, but power through it and you will find The Great Gatsby in all its glory. Luhrman stays as true to the source as he can and Dicaprio gives yet another glorious performance. If I'm going to be honest I think a lot of the negative reviews coming in are due to the "classic" status of the book, people want to act like the hours of school discussions should make this film less fanciful and serious 100 percent of the time. Thing is we have that version twice over in the 1974 & 2000 adaption. Gatsby 2013 is beautiful, over the top, heart wrenching, and thoroughly enjoyable flick that I shall always highly recommend.

Was the above review useful to you?

366 out of 500 people found the following review useful:

An intriguing story re-told again with attention to mystery. 8/10

8/10
Author: naregian from United States
8 May 2013

8/10.

I know a lot of the other reviewers will compare this film to the older one and also the book, so if you're interested in a comparison, stop reading here. I want to review this film as a movie that tells a story, like every other film. I don't want to review this as a film that tried to beat its preceding film adaptation.

I myself have read the book and have always been so intrigued with the character of Gatsby, and when I heard a few years back that he would be portrayed on the big screen by DiCaprio, I couldn't wait. The character carries such a mystery about him that was delivered so excellently by Leonardo DiCaprio, and made it so fun to watch. It was almost like I didn't know what the ending was because I was so immersed in 1920s New York, and in the lifestyle of The Great Gatsby.

The film itself, as a film, was awesome! The visuals and soundtrack were captivating and lavish. The acting was great overall, as you can trust these actors to deliver.

I read somewhere on IMDb (message board or another reviewer, I can't remember) that Leonardo wasn't a good fit for the role of Gatsby. I think this statement couldn't be more wrong. If you have read the book, you must have some idea about the depth of Gatsby's character, the depth of his mind, his desires. The false smiles, the phony handshakes, the uneasiness in being in public, the way Jay Gatsby conducts himself in front of Daisy, and in pursuit of her. All these things are delivered so well by DiCaprio. His nerve, his frustration, his determination...all so eloquently portrayed. But most of all, his passion, and as Nick Carraway, our narrator so emphatically reminds us, his hope. The character development of Jay Gatsby, and the development of all those surrounding him gives us such a deep look at the relationships of such a diverse category of people.

The storyline is obviously interesting: A man realizes his new neighbor is a mysterious, and incredibly wealthy man. Like how awesome is that? Throughout the whole film, as the relationships between all the few main characters become deeper and deeper, and the questions become answered, you just can't help but feel so into the characters' lives. Great writing for the characters, great directing, great great great acting.

Overall, this is just a great film. If you go into the theater thinking "oh this'll suck compared to Robert Redford" or "I bet the book is way better", you're setting yourself up for a bad 143 minutes. Don't be so close minded and try to view it as just another film that tells a fictional story, and a great one at that.

Was the above review useful to you?

237 out of 324 people found the following review useful:

Visually and emotionally lush with a great cast

9/10
Author: olyahannah from United States, NY
10 May 2013

*** This review may contain spoilers ***

Baz Luhrmann really has outdone himself in this film. The cast is beautiful as is the script. The scenes are a visual feast. It is as if Luhrmann reached into Fitzgerald's vision of the 20's, pulled out the heart of it and merged it with what society is today, over nine decades later. Alongside personal strife, we see social inequality, abuse of drugs and alcohol, political and moral corruption, and the failure of financial institutions and their responsibility to people. This film will make you feel that these issues will always be relevant, and that not much changes from generation to generation.

The achingly romantic and hopeful Gatsby is played impeccably by DiCaprio. He has aged into a beautiful man while still possessing those boyish good looks. The beginning of the film has the viewer itching to see Gatsby and hear him speak, and when he finally appears he holds on and captivates throughout the film. The film may awaken something in you, a memory of when you were crazy in love with a person or in love with an idea for what your life should be. DiCaprio embodies a dream and makes you root for him, even though he is shown to be a liar and a man who is desperately trying to steal another's wife- all that does not matter because we see the gentle child-like frailty in him and identify with it. DiCaprio is an excellent actor and was perfect for the role.

I must say that I didn't think that Mulligan can pull the role of Daisy, who in my mind was supposed to be a flawless beauty. However, she didn't disappoint. It made Gatsby's love and desire for her even more fascinating- she was beautiful to him and that's all that mattered. Mulligan was able to play the spoiled and dazed rich girl well, while adding an emotional dimension to the character. Tobey Mcguire definitely held his own, and his story line had an interesting deviation from the novel which was enjoyable. All in all I think it is a must see this year for movie buffs.

Was the above review useful to you?

279 out of 408 people found the following review useful:

"The Great Gatsby" Review

9/10
Author: arnold kumar (TheConnoisseurReviews) from United States
11 May 2013

Baz Luhrmann's "The Great Gatsby," is fairly accurate to the classic novel and keeps most of its themes intact. However, Luhrmann's own flair adds a new dimension to the story. Visually this film is incredibly stunning. From grand sets to the detailed period dresses, this film is a treat for the eyes. Never once does it not take your breath away from its impressive scenery. Many people might be worried about the updated music, but there is nothing to fear. Jay-Z's track works incredible well with the film and complements the era in which it is set.

The direction in this film is impeccable. The cinematography is marvelous and really lets the viewer absorb the sheer artistry that has gone into making this film. Luhrmann keeps a high level of energy throughout the film and the party sequences are choreographed and edited in a way that it makes you feel envious of not being apart of it. Editing in the film is seamless and really keeps the viewer engaged. A common criticism the film receives is that it is more style than substance, however, I must disagree. This modern interpretation doesn't forget its themes and morals from the classic F. Scott Fitzgerald tale.

Performances are phenomenal by the entire cast. Carey Mulligan's Daisy is every bit as careless as one would expect, but she also manages to show some complexity in her role. Tobey Maguire is a great avatar for us to take on as we enter this film. He is very much the viewer as he sees everything happening, but is ultimately helpless to change anything. The true standouts in the film are Joel Edgerton and Leonardo DiCaprio. Edgerton as Tom Buchanan brings a lot of personality to his character that I thought was absent in the book. He's a bit more tender and more vulnerable, especially when he finds out his wife's secret. The true award recognition worthy performance comes from DiCaprio's Gatsby. He hones on being a respectable, but idealistically insane man. His performance is not only compelling, but also charming and quit hopeful. He truly deserves some recognition come Oscar season.

Overall, "The Great Gatsby" is a fantastically entertaining and enthralling film. It is horribly underrated as it is filled with awards worthy visuals, sets, costumes, direction, and performances. It is a great time at the movies for anyone that enjoys the classic novel or who haven't even heard of it. Not only is this film dramatically satisfying, but also quite humorous and a spectacle like no other. I give it 4.5/5, a great adaptation of one of the greatest novels ever written.

Was the above review useful to you?

163 out of 234 people found the following review useful:

Nothing exceeds like excess

9/10
Author: David Horton from United States
14 May 2013

THE GREAT GATSBY There is no movie I have been more prepared to dislike than this one. How dare some Aussie come over here and tell us about the meaning of one of the great works of American literature. Especially this Aussie, Baz Luhrmann, who is known to overload, over-hype and overcook his theatrical product into a glittery miasma of small meaning and little consequence. (i.e. Moulin Rouge)

But I was wrong.

Jay Gatsby has achieved success in a fashion beyond most imaginations, excepting his own. In true Horatio Alger tradition he has worked hard to improve himself, but when his past creeps up on him and threatens his well crafted self image, he suavely and effortlessly changes it, his past, and he inhabits the change until it becomes the reality. He is the self made American man in every way. He is the American success myth both personified and perverted.

Unlike Alger's heroes, he has not followed the straight and narrow. He has acquired his fabulous wealth through bootlegging and stock swindles.

This belief, that he can change his past, to correct it as it were, has given him a veneer of respectability that has put him in good stead with his underworld connections. But it is not for them that Gatsby has made this remarkable metamorphosis. No, he did everything, and I mean everything, for the love of a woman.

Daisy was Gatsby's great love, but he lost her, and now in one final herculean effort he is going to correct his past this one last time. He is going to win her back and make things as they should have been.

Leo DeCaprio is the only actor of this generation that could play Gatsby, just as Robert Redford could only play Gatsby the previous generation. Redford's Gatsby seemed reticent and insecure about his past; regretful that he must live a lie in order to accomplish his goal. DeCaprio's Gatsby is forceful, decisive; he is a determined man of significant accomplishment and great ability. He has a plan and he is going to execute it and as far as he is concerned, for all the right reasons. For myself, it is DeCaprio's best and most powerful performance.

This decision (both DeCaprio's and Luhrmann's) to take Gatsby down from some ethereal literary icon into a flesh and blood human being gives the movie an intensity that the 1974 version and most of the literary criticism of the book that I have ever read, never perceived. This is not a shining white knight rescuing a damsel in distress; this is a bare knuckles brawl for the hand of Daisy, and she is going to have to choose.

Tom Buchanan (Joel Edgerton) is Gatsby's antagonist. He and Daisy were married when Daisy could no longer wait for Gatsby to prove himself worthy of her. Tom is as rich, maybe even richer than Gatsby, but his money is old, he is an aristocrat with a deep sense of entitlement. He has status and wealth because he's supposed to have status and wealth, and he's not about to give up all that, and certainly not his wife, to this new money usurper Gatsby, without a fight.

Bruce Dern played Tom as a kind of loopy (Dern's specialty) racial conspiracy nut, but Edgerton gives Tom a much harder edge. When Tom espouses his vile racial philosophies one might think that someday he might actually do something about it.

Daisy (Carey Mulligan) is a tough role. For all the time that Gatsby spends trying to prove he is good enough for Daisy, the audience, for the book or the film, is led down the path that she is not good enough for him. Mia Farrow played Daisy as an airhead and a dingbat, but Mulligan gives Daisy a bit more spine, and fashions a character that has a pretty good idea where her self-interests lay.

Luhrmann and co-writer Craig Pearse stay pretty close to the text with a few additions and devices, most notably, to those of us who read the book, know that it is Nick Caraway (Tobey Maguire) who tells the story, and is a firsthand witness to all the events, but we never knew from where he tells the story. Luhrmann tells us it is from a sanitarium where Nick is drying out from excessive alcoholism.

As for Luhrmann's reputation for excess: Well, he certainly visualizes Gatsby's parties as excess, but they are supposed to be excessive, excessive materialism is part of the point of the story. There are times when Luhrmann can't resist himself and feels the compulsion to punctuate matters with some visual flourish, but I did not find it too distracting. His decision to go 3D however, I think was wise. The characters seem to come out of the screen and get next to you. You get to know them personally, and after all this is a very personal story.

I think this story has survived the test of time so well because it is basically a love story. Whatever the viewers or readers opinion of the characters are, Gatsby and Daisy do love each other, but Fitzgerald was not interested in boy meets girl, boy loses girl, boy gets girl and they all live happily ever after. Where Fitzgerald reached his own aspiration of creating high art is in wondering if living happily ever after is even possible in an age of class consciousness, even class warfare, that is driven by a compulsive materialism in a world changing so fast that we can't even formulate the question before we have to come up with an answer. Luhrmann stays true to these themes and displays an avid curiosity about them himself.

What he has created is a work of art that stands very well on its own.

check out http://blognmovies.tumblr.com/

Was the above review useful to you?

301 out of 518 people found the following review useful:

I did not entirely hate it

5/10
Author: Bart_OP from Tucson, AZ, United States
11 May 2013

What I thought worked in Luhrmann's Gatsby:

I thought DiCaprio was a better Gatsby than Robert Redford (Redford was too old and underplayed the character). I thought DiCaprio understood a complex character and was adequately convincing.

I Love Carey Mulligan and thought she was mostly convincing as Daisy.

I liked it when the story stuck to Fitzgerald - which was about 75% of the time. (having just read the book again in the last 6 months, I recognized most of the Dialogue as true to the book)

I thought the Costume Design was exquisite. Catherine Martin has done costume work for all of Baz Luhrmann's films and won an academy award for costumes in Moulin Rouge!(as well as being nominated for Romeo + Juliet and Australia. Her work is again superior here - one of the real strengths of the film...

I thought the 2nd half of the movie was much better than the 1st. While I generally did not like the soundtrack I loved that Gershwin's' Rhapsody in Blue' snuck in there in the first scenes in Manhattan.

The "Valley of Ashes" and the "Dr. T.J. Eckleburg, Occulist" sign are really well done - but sadly, the scenes there are so rushed and so downplayed as to prevent that location from being the symbol of death Fitzgerald intended it to be...

The scene in Nick's house where Daisy is invited to tea and re-meets Gatsby.

What I did not like about it:

Every scene with Tobey Maguire in it. His Nick Carraway is too much of Gatsby's lapdog. He is too wide-eyed throughout the story. By the end of the movie I was praying for George Wilson to shoot him.

Luhrmann's story telling device (Nick Carraway in a Sanitarium telling the story to a Doctor who encourages him to write it) - Really Baz Luhrman, you're gonna improve on Fitzgerald?

Luhrmann's other story telling device: the words on the screen. Yuck!

The Art-direction. Everything was too over-the-top and garish. Gatsby's house looks like a Disney creation. One might argue that this is okay because the new-rich are often garish. But part of the character that Fitzgerald wrote was that he was convincing as a monied man.

The sound-track of the 1st half of the movie. Typically Luhrmann; and I have loved it in other contexts. It did not work in Gatsby. After the last party scene, the soundtrack was much better and the rest of the movie felt like Fitzgerald to me.

BTW - I generally am a fan of Baz Luhrmann's work. I loved Romeo + Juliet while it was being panned by professional critics. And I found Moulin Rouge! delightful..

Moet Champaign (which apparently bought huge stock in this movie)

Joel Edgerton ('nuff said)

The over-the-top garishness of the production is so distracting that the great social themes of the day are almost completely lost. They are so subtle int he book and they must be subtly depicted in cinema. They are so subtle as to be almost entirely lost in this production. When I first read the book I felt such sympathy for almost every character (except Tom Buchanan). I did not really care about the characters in this movie at all.

That Damn green light - much too much. It is a powerful but subtle symbol in the book. Let a symbol be a symbol without having to constantly refer to it and without hitting your audience over the head with it.

Because I did not think it entirely sucked, I will give it a 5. Adolescent girls will disagree with me (even as they are failing their Gatsby finals because they based it this mediocre retelling of the story). Fitzgerald and Gatsby fans will think I am being too generous

Note to Hollywood - If you are going to make a movie based on a great work of literature, respect and humbly submit to that greatness, and make a movie worthy of the original.

Was the above review useful to you?

96 out of 153 people found the following review useful:

Loved it!

9/10
Author: laura-alter22 from United States
16 May 2013

For the record, I've read Gatsby at least every other year since I was 17, so, believe me when I say I have been counting down the days and minutes until the new movie opened.

Here it goes then, I saw Gatsby last night and......absolutely loved it! In retrospect (as in halfway through the movie), it just clicked, Leonardo was perfect. He wasn't Redford, but in my humble opinion, better! He nailed it, portraying Gatsby as this truly multi-dimensional character. At first, we're introduced to Gatsby, the well-rehearsed old sport telling his canned story about studying at Oxford, Montenegro medals, etc. etc., but then slowly that forced veneer peels away, and he gives us this angsty, desperate, so-happy-in-love, we can remake the past, tortured soul. Much, much better than Redford. And, the same goes with Daisy. Mia Farrow's Daisy was all flighty and light as a feather, pretty pathetic and self-absorbed, you wonder, what's the big deal with this woman who everyone loves....but with Carey Mulligan, you get it. The scenes of the two of them as young lovers explain it all. Finally, Tobey McGuire....I love him as Peter Parker, Homer Wells and now Nick Carraway. I thought the idea of having him author Gatsby from a hospital was very clever, allowed him to read long passages directly from the book. As for Jay-Z et al., I really didn't mind it, as far as I was concerned, it didn't distract and certainly worked to illuminate the frenetic energy of the 20's. Please, give it another try, see it again. From my experience, a Baz Luhrmann movie is always better the second time around (Moulin Rogue).

Was the above review useful to you?

118 out of 199 people found the following review useful:

Famous scenes and symbolism re-imagined beautifully but also problematically

5/10
Author: napierslogs from Ontario, Canada
11 May 2013

"In my younger and more vulnerable years my father gave me some advice that I've been turning over in my mind ever since. 'Whenever you feel like criticizing anyone,' he told me, 'just remember that all the people in this world haven't had the advantages that you've had.'" I have been frequently convinced that Baz Luhrmann does not know how to read, but I do have the advantage of literacy. However, I am not Nick Carraway and am not compelled to follow his father's advice that opens Fitzgerald's classic novel "The Great Gatsby".

The first big problem with this movie version is that Tobey Maguire's Nick is not the same Nick that we know and love from the novel. This Nick is a quirky, agitated simpleton who has gone insane and has decided to become a writer. His voice and disposition was all wrong. Nick is no longer our credible vantage point into the selfish, boorish ways of the old money and new money of Daisy, Tom, Jordan and Gatsby in East Egg and West Egg.

Much has been said about the lavish style of the film's sets and imagery and even more about the ludicrous soundtrack. But it mostly works. I don't think anyone can deny that the unrestrained money, extravagant mansions, brilliant costumes and choreography with a lively score just make the whole story seem more fun.

I still have no idea what the point of the 3D was. Nick's bow-tie and the strange shooting style (mostly prominent early on) just made everything look cartoonish. At times, it looked like they were driving Gatsby's yellow car through the set of "Who Framed Roger Rabbit". The cartoon- stylings mostly affected Nick; Gatsby's parties are always supposed to be at least slightly surreal.

Problems definitely arise in the beginning when Luhrmann chooses to use his typical flash editing and put some party scenes out of order. The randomness of it all and Nick becoming even farther removed from the narrator we once trusted, was only re-confirming that this was in fact the disaster many expected it to be.

But then we met Gatsby. And more importantly, we met Daisy. And even more importantly, Gatsby met Daisy. It is literally impossible to live up to the expectations about Gatsby – both the man built on wild whispers of him being a war hero, but also the literary character so ingrained in popular culture that he has earned the adjective "great" in front of his name. Leonardo DiCaprio does as good a job as anyone could reasonably expect of him. He drew me in, and since Nick couldn't do that, it was even more than I could ask of him.

One of the significant themes glowing throughout the novel is that of hope. Luhrmann even recognizes this with Nick referring to Gatsby as the singularly most hopeful man he has ever met. And then we would get a shot of the green light glistening off the water and through the fog from the end of Daisy's dock. The one thing missing from DiCaprio's interpretation of Gatsby was that earnest hope. I felt like a photographer on a model shoot: "Now give me a look of hope! No, that's anger. Give me hope! No, that's sadness. Give me hope! No, that's frustration. Fine, just give me another look of despair."

Gatsby yearned for Daisy. And so do we. Carey Mulligan's Daisy was probably the most accurate character re-imagined from the novel. Starting from her introductory scene where she lay on the couch and the wind rustled her white curtains and her diamond ring sparkled in the daylight and then she turned to stare at Nick, she filled the screen with her ethereal beauty and faux innocence. I don't think it's surprising that the film takes its best form in the scenes where it's just Gatsby and Daisy.

It's hard not to get wrapped up in the grandiosity of Gatsby, the grandiosity of the story, and the grandiosity of the film's visuals. It's a beautiful story and it does look beautiful on the big screen, but then comes the nagging suspicion that Luhrmann never actually read the novel. After all, half of the quotes are just paraphrased and are not the actual lines from Fitzgerald, and all of the scenes and famous imagery are only the ones that have seeped into the public consciousness (straight from the Cliffs Notes, perhaps). It should work well as a way to introduce another generation to this accomplished work of art, and I do applaud them for that, but it doesn't serve those who already know the book well.

Was the above review useful to you?

106 out of 177 people found the following review useful:

A Spectacular Failure

4/10
Author: Caterpillar_City from Pennsylvania
10 May 2013

*** This review may contain spoilers ***

Adapting famous and well-respected classic literature can't be easy. The film industry's track record attests to this: for every Ran, there are five misfires that people quickly forget. The filmmakers behind this year's adaptation of The Great Gatsby make the task seem impossible. This movie is a disaster.

Much has been made of director Baz Luhrmann's overblown style in The Great Gatsby, but that is just one of the movie's many issues. Actually, let's start with the production design. This movie is super polished and glamorous, but everything looks so blatantly fake. CGI stands in for actual set design and shooting locations. One of the movie's few redeeming features is the scope of the production, but even that is unimpressive when considering most of the movie was made on a computer. Admittetly, the costumes and makeup/hair look nice, and the movie will surely receive some award attention in that department.

The script and the acting are where The Great Gatsby really falls apart. There is no depth of character for anybody involved. The central three characters don't come across as real people. Nick Carraway has nothing to do but stand around and watch Gatsby and Daisy court each other. His frequent narration is baffling pointless, often describing the events exactly as they happen or directly telling the audience the movie's themes, as if we are too stupid to notice them. Carraway frequently stands in the corner watching the action unfold, instead of driving the plot forward with any interaction with other characters. This is a huge problem because Carraway serves as the main protagonist (Gatsby isn't introduced for over 20 minutes). Gatsby and Daisy don't fair any better. Their romance takes up the majority of the screen time in acts two and three, but there is no chemistry, nor do they display any emotional connection with each other. Instead, Gatsby and Daisy just tell each other how they feel with laughably clunky dialogue. There are no scenes showing the intense feelings they supposedly have for each other. They speak at each other instead of having actual conversations.

The actors cannot handle the script's horrible dialogue. The central three actors (Maguire, DiCaprio, and Mulligan) deliver the cornball dialogue with misplaced self- serious melodrama, making many of the conversations draw laughter from the audience. Several members of the supporting cast take the material and ham it up, causing a jarring inconsistency in tone. Lurhmann shows no motivation to rein in his actors.

Speaking of the supporting cast, some of the prominent characters from the first act completely disappear for most of the movie. The only person who shows some level of depth and complexity is Elizabeth Debicki's Jordan Baker, but she vanishes for over an hour, before coming back to do absolutely nothing. Isla Fisher's Myrtle Wilson suffers a similar fate.

The use of music should be mentioned, if only because it is drawing some criticism. Using modern music in this movie wasn't a bad idea, but the execution is nothing remarkable. Instead of using contemporary pop for any dramatic or stylistic purpose, it just seems like Lurhmann picked some songs off his ipod and threw them into the movie.

The Great Gatsby is a failure on nearly all levels. It's individual flaws could be overlooked if the movie came together to form something cohesive and meaningful, but the whole affair feels hollow. Any symbolism or larger thematic goals get lost in the glossy extravagance. The filmmakers seem to be aware of this, so they pound the themes into the viewers with nothing resembling subtlety or grace. It's truly baffling how anybody in Hollywood could green-light a script this poor, and then throw millions of dollars at the production. The Great Gatsby is a soulless movie that covers up its lack of passion and heart with computer generated spectacle. All signifying nothing.

Was the above review useful to you?

143 out of 254 people found the following review useful:

"I wasn't actually in love, but I felt a sort of tender curiosity."

6/10
Author: prameetkumar from New York City
10 May 2013

I watched this film with a sort of tender curiosity.

It was deliciously excessive and exaggerated, as expected from a Baz Luhrmann production. Leonardo DiCaprio made Gatsby his own ("Old spor'!") while retaining a feeling of familiarity. The screenplay was a faithful adaptation and even helped me understand some of the novel's themes more clearly. And though you'd think hearing dubstep during the Jazz Age would be jarring, the soundtrack worked very well.

But I couldn't love it. And it's (mostly) Tobey Maguire's fault.

Gatsby loomed so large in the original story that it's not hard to forget all about Nick. But it can be argued, and often is, that it was Nick and not Gatsby who was the protagonist of the novel. Fitgerald's story, told from Nick's first-person point of view, was only as good as Nick's narration; Gatsby was only so great because Nick viewed him that way.

Unfortunately, Maguire fell completely flat in his role as narrative guide. There was always so much else going on and so much of Luhrmann's dreamscape to absorb that Maguire seemed to get lost in it all. And — with him — so did the viewer. Without a strong presence from Maguire, Nick was relegated from having a role as interpreter of events to being just another character (and a rather unimportant one at that).

Luhrmann tried to maintain Nick's narrative frame by having him tell the story — first as a patient speaking to his doctor at a sanitarium, then as a writer trying to explain his grief through prose. But those scenes came across (at best) as heavy-handed expository or (at worst) as Maguire's uninspired take on an abridged audiobook version of "The Great Gatsby."

I wanted to love this film. I really did. It had so many wonderful qualities. But with no Nick (only a Tobey) to help make sense of the people and events, "angry, and half in love with {it}, and tremendously sorry, I turned away."

Was the above review useful to you?


Page 1 of 67:[1] [2] [3] [4] [5] [6] [7] [8] [9] [10] [11] [Next]

Add another review


Related Links

Plot summary Plot synopsis Ratings
Awards External reviews Parents Guide
Official site Plot keywords Main details
Your user reviews Your vote history