Another day, another Gatsby movie, and I will go out on a limb to predict another mediocrity. They keep trying to make this story into a film, but the book is just too gossamer for that to be done successfully.
And when I write “they keep trying,” I’m not just whistling Dixie:
The Great Gatsby (1926 film), a silent film starring Warner Baxter and Lois Wilson
The Great Gatsby (1949 film), starring Alan Ladd and Betty Field
The Great Gatsby (1974 film), starring Robert Redford and Mia Farrow
The Great Gatsby (2000 film), a TV film starring Toby Stephens and Mira Sorvino
The Great Gatsby (2013 film), an upcoming Baz Luhrmann film starring Leonardo DiCaprio and Tobey Maguire
Of all of these, I’ve only seen the 1974 film, which was hyped to the skies when it came out. It was almost unutterably boring.
I must confess, though, that I’m not objective about this because I’ve never liked Gatsby even in book form. I just don’t get it, and believe me I’ve tried. I’ve actually plowed through the book several times because it’s supposed to be such a masterpiece, but I keep losing my concentration and it becomes a big chore. I find I just don’t care one iota about Jay and his shirts and Daisy and her dreams.
This guy seems to have liked the newest cinematic effort at Gatsby, though it sounds dreadful to me. This very-faint-praise Variety review seems more on the mark: it’s a spectacle without heart and pretty much without point. The clothes are always great, though.