Opening in theaters everywhere this weekend is yet another glitz and glam film by Baz Lurhmann, The Great Gatsby. Luhrmann is no stranger to adapting famous works of literature – he has worked with Leonardo DiCaprio before in Romeo + Juliet. All of the marketing efforts leading up to the big release is that the film will be a contemporary take on the classic novel written by F. Scott Fitzgerald while still taking place in the 1920s. Watch the full trailer after the break if you’d like to get a big taste of what’s in store.
From what we’ve seen in the trailers, this movie is a spectacular showcase of cinematography; an eyegasmic experience to fully embrace with 3D, perfect for the summer movie season. But where it succeeds in obtaining your interest on a visual level it lacks in emotional weight. I get that there is a mystery behind this Gatsby fellow played by Leonardo DiCaprio and that everyone wants to know who he is, but what is the significance or importance to finding out who this man truly is? All of the supporting cast also seems to go by the wayside just to put the full emphasis on Gatsby.
For those of you who like to stay innocent to trailers, this is definitely one you should avoid at all costs. Anyone who is indifferent and could care less about Luhrmann’s adaptation, can watch this trailer below because it practically lays out all of the details from the beginning, middle, and end. It’s a shame when movie trailers do this. The marketing team just have been very hard-pressed to try and reach audiences and get them on board for yet another adaptation of The Great Gatsby. Take a look:
Again, this final trailer insists on infusing modern music with the story beats that are suppose to engage us emotionally, but the music comes out stronger than what is depicted here. Any fan of the book can tell just exactly where each moment lies in this trailer as if it were meant for them. As someone who has never read the book, I get nothing from this trailer. I feel no intrigue or excitement about the life of Jay Gatsby nor Nick Carraway (Tobey Maguire) our narrator.
In case you don’t feel like dusting off the book before seeing the movie, here’s a brief synopsis of the plot courtesy of Apple Trailers:
The Great Gatsby follows Fitzgerald-like, would-be writer Nick Carraway as he leaves the Midwest and comes to New York City in the spring of 1922, an era of loosening morals, glittering jazz and bootleg kings. Chasing his own American Dream, Nick lands next door to a mysterious, party-giving millionaire, Jay Gatsby, and across the bay from his cousin, Daisy, and her philandering, blue-blooded husband, Tom Buchanan. It is thus that Nick is drawn into the captivating world of the super-rich, their illusions, loves and deceits. As Nick bears witness, within and without the world he inhabits, he pens a tale of impossible love, incorruptible dreams and high-octane tragedy, and holds a mirror to our own modern times and struggles.
There is quite a lot of weight on the shoulders of Baz as this is the fifth attempt to adapt The Great Gatsby to screen. The production looks stunning, and of course I believe the actors will do a job well done, but will the text on the page be well conveyed to triumph where others have failed? Luhrmann has certainly had success of mixing contemporary and old with Moulin Rouge! and Romeo + Juliet, will he be able to do the same here?
Also starring alongside Leonardo DiCaprio and Tobey Maguire is Carey Mulligan as Daisy Buchanan, Joel Edgerton as Tom Buchanan, Isla Fisher as Myrtle Wilson, Elizabeth Debicki as Jordan Baker, Jason Clarke as George Wilson, and Amitabh Bachchan as Meyer Wolfshiem. The screenplay was written by Baz Luhrmann and Craig Pearce and the film is being distributed by Warner Bros. Pictures.
Let us know if you are looking forward to this movie and whether or not you believe it will succeed as an adaptation.
The Great Gatsby hits theaters this Friday, May 10 in 2D and 3D everywhere.