Steen: Five star endorsement for Gatsby

Justice more than done with this rendition as we are taken on a roller coaster ride of hope, excess, loveless unions, so much more.

The Great Gatsby

So there I was at 10:45 p.m., the only person in the theatre watching The Great Gadsby in 3D.

Being alone in a theatre is a strange feeling, like I had my own (very large) media room and was going back in time to New York in 1922.  The boys were back from the war and New York was the party time place to be.

For those of us who have read the novel by F. Scott Fitzgerald, who many believe is America’s greatest writer and who’s works include The Curious Case of  Benjamin Button (also recently made into a movie) and some who have seen the earlier movie, it’s hard to imagine that justice would be done by today’s Hollywood.

But justice was more than done as we are taken on a roller coaster ride of hope, excess, loveless unions, illicit affairs and so much more.

Seen through the eyes of the neighbour and friend, Wall Street hopeful Nick Carraway (Toby Maquire) witnesses the highs and lows of life in New York in the 1920s, a time that writer Fitzgerald was very familiar with.  Born in 1896, Fitzgerald died in 1940 having witnessed and written about the Jazz Age in all its glory, extravagance, greed and overindulgence.

The cast is brilliant; from Leonardo DiCaprio as Gatsby to Carey Mulligan as Daisy.

Mulligan (Pride and Prejudice was her first major role) got the call that she was selected for the part while attending a fashion awards dinner and immediately burst into tears in front of the heads of the industry.

Mulligan is terrific as the wife in a loveless marriage to Tom Buchanan (Joel Edgerton, who is well known for his work on Australian TV) and Gatsby’s obsessive love interest.

Ben Affleck was considered for the role of Tom Buchanan but he had scheduling conflicts.

We know the plot well—a story of  coming from nothing with only hope and a desire to succeed, as well as a real talent for fooling some of the people some of the time. But the real story is that the “fake” has more character than those stalwarts of the community who are secure in their own history.

Sadly (and ain’t this the truth), falling in love would change his destiny forever.

I give The Great Gatsby five reels out of five—it’s a great, big movie that takes you away, but gives you back life lessons of hope, friendship, love at its best and worst, life at its most frantic and a new appreciation of what’s really important at the end of the day: It’s not where you came from, but who you become along the way.

Go see this!