Nick Carraway, a writer turned bond salesman, moves to New York. He rents a small house near a bay and starts regularly visiting his niece Daisy. She lives together with her (cheating) husband on the opposite side of the bay. Shortly after moving, Nick catches glimpses of his mysterious neighbor: Gatsby. He is well known for holding lavish parties at his mansion. One day Gatsby invites Nick to also attend one of these parties. The two men like each other’s company and become friends. Nick is impressed by Gatsby’s many elaborate stories. Though, there is one story that Gatsby did not openly share: his parties are intended to attract Daisy, Nick’s cousin. Gatsby had a relationship with her a long time ago and has remained in love with her throughout the years.
This is the sixth film version of the famous book by F. Scott Fitzgerald, and undoubtedly the most expensive one as well. It was created by director Baz Luhrman, well known for visually rich films like Romeo and Juliet and Moulin Rouge. Though The Great Gatsby is indeed a very colorful movie, it is fortunately not one that will give you headaches. The film occasionally uses fairly symbolic cinematography, adding to the rather surrealistic feel established early in the movie through Gatsby’s parties. Leonardo DiCaprio gives an excellent portrayal of the eccentric Gatsby, well balanced with Tobey Maguire’s role as Nick: a modest character. Complicated love affairs and their consequences are the focus of this movie, Daisy (Carey Mulligan) being at the center of it all.
The Great Gatsby is a fast-paced romantic drama. Though not particularly deep, it is a welcome departure from this summer’s action blockbusters and among the best movies released this year.