Before watching the movie, I heard that it was good and I also heard that it was bad, very bad. Bad enough for one of my friend to fall asleep 20 minutes into the movie. I didn’t quite fall asleep but I do think that Baz Lurhmann may want to consider retirement. I loved his work from Strictly Ballroom to Australia. I remember watching Romeo + Juliet in Perth and wanting to direct. The Great Gatsby isn’t like any of his earlier films. In fact, if anything The Great Gatsby shows that he has yet to grow as a director.
I did like the book when I read it. In fact, it’s my favourite Fitzgerald. So when they changed some of the lines in the book and didn’t quote them verbatim, I felt a little cheated. Simply because the change took away the gravity of the lines as I read them in the book. The movie also didn’t do justice to the complex characters and relationships. However, most film adaptations don’t do justice to the book so Mr Lurhmann isn’t alone in this. I’ve said this before, if I notice directorial calls that I would have done differently, the film is a little flawed by me. It happened more than a couple of time with this movie. I even had time to ponder what if Leonardo played Nick and Tobey played Gatsby instead?
Overall, it was a little disappointing but I had to watch it for so many reasons. The director, the cast, the story and the soundtrack, which I really liked. Everyone now knows what is my next iTunes purchase 🙂 Unless you’re a big Leonardo fan, go read the book, the story is so much better there and your imagination can be wilder than Baz Lurhmann’s.