One of the best movies to reach our shores this summer.
With names like Leonardo DiCaprio, Tobey Maguire and Carey Mulligan among the cast, how could it not be. Which is why I am rather surprised at the minimal screening The Great Gatsby is getting. Even the cinema was packed right up to the first neck-breaking row.
The film is an adaptation of F. Scott Fitzgerald's 1925 novel of the same name and it follows the story of the mysterious Jay Gatsby, as recounted by his neighbor, Nick. The movie takes place in New York at the height of the Roaring Twenties so expect nothing but the most elaborate of sets. From iconic costumes, flashy cars, pompous carnival-like parties at the grand mansions of the rich upper class right down to the filthy "valley of ashes", an industrial dumping ground where the not-so-rich stays, one must really applaud the details that were put into bringing everything to live.
The storyline itself is dramatic and shocking yet filled with comedic moments that one could not help but be sucked into the jazziness of it all - not unlike how Nick was swept off his feet the moment he moved to West Egg, Long Island. Imagine he had to seek psychiatric help after that!
And then there is the soundtrack. The Great Gatsby featured a beautiful selection of scores and songs but the one that most stood out would definitely be the theme song, "Young and Beautiful", performed by the talented Lana Del Rey. She totally captured the soul of the song and the heart of the movie. When the snippet of the song came up in one of the scenes, it literally brought tears to my eyes. Such a sad yet surreal feeling...
I do not want to be dishing out spoilers but my heart does go out for Jay Gatsby and I concur with what Nick shouted to him toward the end of the movie:
"They're a rotten crowd. You're worth the whole damn bunch put together!"
Indeed he's worth more than they will ever be.
Ad finis fidelis.