Movie review: The Great Gatsby

From left, Tobey McGuire, Leonardo DiCaprio, Carey Mulligan and Joel Edgerton in a scene from the movie The Great Gatsby, a Warner Bros. Pictures release.
From left, Tobey McGuire, Leonardo DiCaprio, Carey Mulligan and Joel Edgerton in a scene from the movie The Great Gatsby, a Warner Bros. Pictures release. Courtesy of Warner Bros. Picture

BREATHTAKINGLY beautiful. Decedent, opulent and extravagant.

Slick and smooth, classy and charismatic and yet underneath the glittering surface, there lies a vulnerability and a shot of pure, raw emotion.

Just like Jay Gatsby himself.

Baz Luhrmann's The Great Gatsby is a visually stunning piece of cinema that transports F Scott Fitzgerald's masterpiece to a modern crowd. It's intelligent and gloriously overwhelming.

A pure visual feast and lavish in all aspects.

The parties are wild, the set designs magnificent, the costumes drip in decadence. But it's also the film making itself that helps to create the feel of pure decadence.

The use of 3D is masterfully utilised so the audience sees things in the same way narrator Nick Carroway does.

The film centres on his feeling of awe and being overwhelmed and the audience feels this too, in a spectacular way.

The use of music is masterfully woven through the film.

Luhrmann has been criticised for his use of a hip hop laden soundtrack through his collaboration with Jay-Z.

But it works.

The jazz age was a time of decadence and rebellion and jazz music; this African street music, was a new and progressive sound.

But today it's not quite seen in the same way and Luhrmann has captured the same feel and magnified it and converted it to a modern audience.

The cast is phenomenal across the board.

They switch from comedy to menace with ease, often in the blink of an eye. Leonardo DiCaprio is the perfect Gatsby.

He's charming and smooth but full of a childlike sense of hope.

But underneath the debauchery, dancing and decadence it is a tragically simple and moving tale, one that rings true as much today as when it was written.

The Great Gatsby is a cinema must see.

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The Great Gatsby

  • Stars: Leonardo DiCaprio, Carey Mulligan, Joel Edgerton, Isla Fisher, Tobey Maguire
  • Director: Baz Luhrmann
  • Rated: M
  • Verdict: Four out of five stars

Topics:  baz luhrmann isla fisher joel edgerton leonardo dicaprio movie review the great gatsby

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