In 2013, Baz Luhrmann directed a old style movie, in a new dynamic. The Great Gatsby is a thrilling film of romance and drama by incorporating affairs, lost love, the American dream, and corruption. Luhrmann directed with a well fit cast including: Leonardo DiCaprio as Gatsby, and actor, Tobey Maguire to play Nick Carraway. He sets an early 1920s scene with decadence of class filled style and every small detail for technology and language. He uses the terms East and West Egg to describe the state of New Yorks neighborhoods as the setting of old and new money territories. As a first person narrative from Nick Carraway, the movies unfolding follows much that of the book.
Throughout the Great Gatsby, society and class, love, the American dream, and wealth are all well displayed as themes. The character Gatsby is engulfed in the ideas of success and social class owing to the fact of his infatuation for Daisy Buchanan. Daisy was raised in the East Egg, or the old money of New York and Gatsby we find out is self made and lives in West Egg. He believes that he is not worthy of her love without his money and spent years to be able to provide all he believes she wants. When he finds she is not pleased or at all interested in his parties he has been throwing for years, he stops them. Everything Gatsby did throughout the film and book reflected on what he believes Daisy would like best. In the end of the movie, Gatsby is in some denial of the reality of Daisy and her feelings for him. This seems to start decending when her husband, Tom, gets involved in their fairytale love affair. Gatsby is a prime example of the American dream. He tells Nick his parents were farmers and he achieved his current wealth by himself. He had help with achieving class and manners from a friend he met while being in college, picking up his classic phrase old sport. Wealth and class to Gatsby was important not only for Daisy, but to establish himself and prove he was more than just new money. Throughout the movie, Nick Carraway narrates the events of Gatsby's life and his own feelings about the situations Gatsby places him in. The Buchanans flee once they leave all those lives they touched in ruins. In the end, Nick is left just how he was before he met Gatsby, alone and empty.
Baz Luhrmann takes a 21st century spin when he produced his film of Fitzgeralds the Great Gatsby. He uses a seemingly aesthetic pleasing camera angles for the party scenes and throughout the movie. Although constant, I did not enjoy it, finding my head hurting within the first 20 minutes of the movie from this effect. Luhrmann also fades in and out from present day to the past of what Nick is recalling, this adds to the plot line and makes the movie interesting to watch. Luhrmann shows Nick typing the book of events, because of being advised by his counselor, which changes the plot a bit from the book, a more interesting twist. He seems to be a director of detail, not skimming on any 1920s details throughout each scene. An example of this would be in Nicks house when Daisy comes over for tea, the furniture and technology is spot on with the time period.
In contrast, Luhrmann was not afraid to incorporate the present day into his movie. He used new music genres and artists from the present day, giving the movie an appeal to a younger generation. The soundtrack for this film included Jay-Z, Beyonce, and Lana Del Rey, all which are still popular artists 3 years later. His pick of sad, dream pop music mixed with upbeat tones places the setting and fits the feelings of the movie seamlessly. Luhrmanns scenes are seen to be energetic and colorful, his equipment for filming was flawless, showing each hair and small thing in great detail.
Overall, Baz Luhrmanns directing and technology was impressive and a unique display of the Great Gatsby. I loved his take on the movie and relating present day in the music and using technology for a new way showing the early 1920s. I would recommend this movie, only after reading the book. I have a different appreciation for the movie after reading the book than when I saw it before. The clarity of scenes helped me enjoy the movie and be able to want to watch it again. Through the actor Leonardo DiCaprio, Gatsbys emotions were more prominent without being spoken in the movie. Although I do believe they could have been more true to the story line or time period, it would not have been half as popular or interesting to the generation we have currently. I do not believe Luhrmann or another director could have done any better with a new twist. I would give this movie a 10/10, it has become my favorite movie that is not a sequel and would love to recommend to a friend.