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Title :The Great Gatsby (2013)
Release : 30 August 2013
Rating :7.3/10
Director:Baz Luhrmann
Writers: Baz Luhrmann
Country:Australia | USA
Language:English
Runtime: 2h 23min
Genre :Drama, Romance
Stars : Leonardo DiCaprio, Carey Mulligan, Joel Edgerton

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The Great Gatsby (2013) trailer

The Great Gatsby (2013) review

Like his “Romeo + Juliet,” Baz Luhrmann’s unabashedly flashy take on F. Scott Fitzgerald’s revered novel will probably outrage the nation’s English teachers. But while this “Gatsby” can’t by any standard be considered great, it does have its glittering charms.

It takes a while to get to them, because Luhrmann and co-writer Craig Pearce rely on a misguided framing device. Our distressed narrator, Nick Carraway (Tobey Maguire), recollects the story from a sanitarium.

As he looks back, we swoop down onto 1922 Long Island, where Nick’s cousin, Daisy (Carey Mulligan), lives with her brutish husband, Tom (Joel Edgerton). Nick himself lives across the bay, next door to the mysterious Jay Gatsby.

Though Gatsby has long been in love with Daisy, his humble rural roots were no match for Tom’s patrician lineage. But after years apart he has transformed himself into a millionaire, one finally suitable — he assumes — for an ethereal debutante like Daisy.

If you haven’t read the book in a while, wait until after you see the movie. That way, you can appreciate Luhrmann’s frankly superficial approach, without focusing on what he leaves out (Nick’s romance with Jordan Baker) or adds in (unmistakable parallels to another decayed American dream, “Citizen Kane”).

It would certainly be easy for a Fitzgerald fan to find fault. The themes are spelled out with all the refinement of Cliffs Notes. The CGI gimmicks add nothing relevant (skip the 3-D ticket). And few of the actors seem at all comfortable amid the decadence.

Maguire, who does have the wry observational skills needed for Nick’s Midwestern decency, is directed toward a wide-eyed, one-note performance. Mulligan doesn’t expand much further, but her pretty inaccessibility suits Daisy.

As the pathetic husband of Tom’s garish mistress (Isla Fisher), hulking Jason Clarke is completely miscast. Elizabeth Debicki looks great, but does nothing as languorous golfer Jordan.

And Edgerton’s Tom all but twirls his mustache in cartoonish villainy. This role requires an actor who understands the ties that bind Tom and Daisy — Armie Hammer might have been perfect. But the Australian-born Edgerton makes no distinction between old money and new, getting his crucial part utterly wrong.

Still, for those willing to go with the champagne flow, this version has undeniable allure. The party scenes are dazzling spectacles only studio money could buy. The contemporary soundtrack, which combines jazz with Jay-Z, suggests some timeless connections. The Prada costumes and extravagant set design — by Luhrmann’s wife, Catherine Martin — are astoundingly gorgeous. Luhrmann has created an experience, in other words, not unlike the events Gatsby throws himself.

Of course, an empty experience is nothing more than a soul-crushing corruption, so it’s a good thing we’ve got Leonardo DiCaprio at the movie’s core. At first he does seem stilted and unnatural. But then you watch him drop the artifice — every time Daisy enters the room — and realize how carefully conceived his portrayal really is.Luhrmann piles on one shiny distraction after another. But amid all the seductively gaudy excess, DiCaprio finds both the heart and hurt buried within one of literature’s everlasting enigmas.

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