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The Great Gatsby: Please Don’t Suck

Some words I must share in anticipation of director/writer Baz Luhrmann‘s attempt at “The Great Gatsby.

Gatsby Poster

First and foremost, please don’t fuck it up. With the limited amount of reading my generation-A.D.D. brain has done throughout my life, one of the few books I have read, which is hands down is my favorite book ever, is The Great Gatsby. I love the book so much so that I bought the rest of F. Scott Fitzgerald’s collection and I’m currently on my third Fitzgerald novel right now. You can see why I am hoping this movie doesn’t do to Fitzgerald’s work what South Park claimed George Lucas and Steven Spielberg did to the Indiana Jones franchise with the “Kingdown of the Crystal Skull.”

The trailers make it look sexy and everything, and the plot is too good for this movie to royally suck, but I am still worried.

Reason’s Why I’m Worried:

1) Baz Luhrmann’s other works include 1996’s Romeo + Juliet.

Though this movie was quite visually stimulating, taking the setting of a work of SHAKESPEARE from 1400s Verona, Italy, to a fictional modern-day L.A./Miami-esque city is taking quite the liberty. Not to mention his interpretation of Mercutio:

Mercutio from Romeo + Juliet (1996)

I have no doubts that the colors, tones, sets, etc. Lurhmann uses in Gatsby will be visually and aesthetically awesome, but I just hope he doesn’t take too many liberties with my baby.

2) The Damned Soundtrack

Call me an old grandpa, but I don’t need hip-hop and dub-step in a movie soundtrack to make me want to go see a movie set in 1920s New York. I may be alone on this, in comparison to other 80’s babies, but I really dig 1920s music. It was the beginning of Jazz for fuck’s sake. Watch an episode of Boardwalk Empire. If you haven’t yet, the music, the dialogue, the set designs, and costumes all thoroughly do an amazing job of making you feel like you are sippin high-balls and chain smokin at a Josephine Baker performance in 1920s Harlem.

As a music lover, I would have loved for this movie’s soundtrack to be strictly geared toward the era. Some rag-time, some Creole Jazz, some Sidney Betchet, Louis Armstrong, Duke Ellington, you know.

Now I get the director wants millions to see the movie, and not many 20-something year olds and younger give two shits about the soundtrack staying true to the era, and that he has to make it sexy and hype it up to kill it at the box office, but this soundtrack is garbage. So Rick Ross worked in Tarentino’s “Django Unchained,” but WHY would Baz think will.i.am., Lana Del Ray, and Gotye are worthy of accompanying easily one of the top 5 greatest American novels ever written? When I think of the roaring ’20s in New York City, I think of unknown jazz legends playing in speakeasies for careless young people chillin, without an ounce of responsibility, yet somehow, with class. I do not think of FERGIE or Jay Z.

Exhibit A of the soundtrack being stanky is Andre 3000 & Beyonce’s rendition of Amy Winehouse & Marc Ronson’s “Back to Black.” I love Andre 3000 and Beyonce, but I also love Amy Winehouse, and they totally Butchered it. I mean, she’s dead. How fittingly eerie it would have been for Gatsby to just use the original “Back to Black,” but no, instead they resort to mooching off the sex appeal and popularity of Queen B. The soundtrack overall isn’t really a big deal in the grand scheme of things, but If Luhrmann has already sold out this bad with the soundtrack, it doesn’t make me too hopeful for the movie’s full potential.

The Upside

The Cast. I absolutely have no complaints about the cast. Tobey Maguire fits Nick Carraway just fine. Kinda like Will Smith as Ali; you’re unsure if you agree, but you’re just like “eh, I don’t see why not.”

and I love Leo, full homo.

 And Carey Mulligan is just how Fitz described Daisy.

I pictured this psycho from Boardwalk as Tom Buchannan for some reason. 

but its actually this guy, which works.

and then Myrtle

so yeah, no complaints about the cast. Whatever, I’m a total 1920s-phile, so I hope its a good movie. It probably will be decent. Though reading Fitzgerald’s language is what produces the most evocative effect possible.

Some ’20s Jazz

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5 Comments

  1. andrew bacha

     /  May 2, 2013

    I totally agree, I want to see it but I HATED Moulin Rouge so it makes me very wary about seeing this.

    Reply
  2. Ethan

     /  May 6, 2013

    The soundtrack sucks ass. I agree 100% with you.

    Reply
  3. Ethan

     /  May 6, 2013

    It is indeed a terrible soundtrack…I hope the film has some real 1920s music

    Reply
  4. jp

     /  May 10, 2013

    the great gatsby movie indeed sucks!!! I am so disappointed. Toby Maguire! Please! Help, he fakes an old man’s voice throughout the entire film and its a total flop. The film appears to be a spot for alcohol, fashion, diamonds and interior design ideas. The sound track is weird too.

    Reply

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