I’ve come to terms with the fact that no review will convince me to like or not like a movie. Nor will it convince me that I WILL like or not like a movie. Because no matter what people say, there is always the chance that you will disagree. Keep that in mind before reading reviews. The only way you can make up your mind is by watching the movie yourself. As for The Great Gatsby, I will do my best to convince you to give it a chance.
Let’s start with the acting…………flawless. Carey Mulligan manages to nail her accent perfectly. You’ll forget she is even British. She is also one of those actresses whose signature facial expression is the weepy puppy look, which works every time. She just makes you melt, even if her character is unlikeable. Leonardo DiCaprio is of course stellar as Jay Gatsby, a role that was perfected previously by Robert Redford. The real surprise for me was Tobey Maguire. Perhaps it is because I recently watched him in Spiderman, which was a disappointing revisit, making me wonder why I ever liked it. But it has been, would you believe it, ten years since that movie came out. Tobey Maguire has improved significantly since then, giving a wonderful performance as Nick Carraway, the real lead in the story. I don’t know about you, but ten years has done wonders for his appearance as well. But that is beside the point……
The obvious parts of this movie are the costumes and set designs. There is no denying they are spectacular. Decadent. Glorious. Lavish. Delicious. Sumptuous. Every single piece of clothing is gorgeous. The sets are enormous and epic, just like the parties held at Gatsby’s mansion. So there, that is one less thing you have to worry about.
Some people are worried about the music. I was too. Modern music in a period piece? It has been done before (Django Unchained, Moulin Rouge, Marie Antoinette, A Knight’s Tale) and done well. This movie fits in that category. The song choices were great for each scene, and yes, there is music that was scored for the film as well (composed by Craig Armstrong). The original score is beautiful and used where it should be. The contemporary music used includes songs by Jack White, Jay Z, Lana Del Rey, and Beyonce. Sounds cheesy right? Don’t worry, it isn’t as bad as you might think. It is actually not bad at all. I thought it worked.
Now for those of you who are worried the movie won’t follow the book, I don’t know what to tell you. I have not read the book (only skimmed it), but I have seen the Robert Redford movie and looked up the synopsis online. According to what I know, the movie is pretty accurate, but I am never a stickler about that sort of stuff. The book is the book. The movie is the movie. Period.
I could go on and on and on and on about why you should see this movie, but I’ll stop here. When I got out of the theater, not one person said they didn’t like it. I really enjoyed it. Enough to see it again.