The long awaited Great Gatsby.
I’ve been waiting for this movie to come out since last year. To me, this was a book that meant a lot to me. As a teenager reading it for English class, I was taken away by F.Scott Fitzgerald’s 1920’s flapper America. He described a world that was full of hopes and dreams, but also corruption, self-absorbance and ignorance. The way the characters interacted with each other in the past and the present was like a tale that’s never too old because we’re always going to be repeating the same mistakes over and over again. Daisy and Gatsby’s relationship in the past directly influenced how they behaved in the present. Gatsby’s struggle towards achieving the American dream had won him money and status but in the end the one thing that he longed for the most was also the one thing he failed to grasp, like the green light that was waiting for him at the end of the dock but never attainable. The blinking of the light in all those endless nights still haunt him till the end of his life.
Leo as Gatsby was just perfect. I particularly loved how he acted during his first reunion with Daisy in Nick’s house. He went back to being a little kid and was so nervous that he kept fussing with his shirt trying to find the perfect way to meet Daisy again for the first time. He had all these expectations for Daisy and wanted it to be perfect but in the end, Daisy wasn’t the old Daisy anymore. After all those years, she had moved on and become someone else, just that poor Gatsby hadn’t noticed.
The movie was amazing in terms of its stage design and costumes. The roaring 20s was a decade of corruption and self-indulgence. Everyone was drinking away no matter they’re happy or sad, rich or poor. But the way Fitzgerald wrote the story, it was as if the poor Wilson was contributing his man labour just so that the Old Money Tom could enjoy his luxurious life. Wilson was constantly cheated and even though TJ Eckleberg who was implied as an overlooking power, was watching over, it seems like nothing is ever going to be fair and just in Fitzgerald’s world. Wilson’s world was dark, gloomy and full of despair. His wife was having an affair with the Old Money and the Old Money was cheating Wilson for his labour and his wife. What else is going to be fair? Wilson as a blue collar had no hopes, no money and the only thing that kept him going, his wife, was not even faithful to him. So when all else fails, his only resort became murder and suicide.
I loved how the movie portrayed the ending scene. Wilson lost his wife to death and her love to Tom, while Gatsby lost his love to the past and also to Tom when Daisy decided to leave town with Tom. Two very different people living in two different worlds are actually not that different after all. They’re so different on the outside yet so similar on the inside. On one hand we have Wilson, blue collar garage worker, the other we have Gatsby, wealthy New Money, they both are people in despair trying so hard to win back the love of their lives, but both fell hard and in the course of chasing their dreams, it cost their lives.
One of my favourite scenes was when Gatsby threw down a bunch of clothes onto Daisy from the balcony in his room. That scene was so simple yet it says so much. It showed us how much Gatsby had worked for Daisy yet Daisy was just scared to death to face her past that she was only able to say something silly.
I would say that the movie won’t be as entertaining if you’re not a fan of the book. But if you are a huge fan of Fitzgerald’s work, please go see the movie. You’ll be overcome by an overwhelming wave of depressing thoughts and how lame everything becomes when your expectations are too high.
I could go on forever about this book/ movie, but I don’t think you’d like to hear anymore. So trust me, when you go see the movie, you best read the book first. You’ll get so much more out of the experience than just walking into the theater and expect a great movie.
PS. I hope Leo finally gets an Oscar. He freaking deserves one goddamnit.