Written October 28, 2014
I gave this movie a 'so-so' rating because of the production. Didn't like the party scenes ... too busy and I got dizzy. This part of the movie reminded me of "Moulin Rouge" which I hated. After the introduction of the characters were made and the storyline became more in-focus, I was able to enjoy it more. However, the overkill of the production continued to distract the emotions of the characters.
Each role was well cast. I always like Toby McGuire and he didn't disappoint. Leonardo DiCaprio was a good Gatsby. However, his floating in the water after being murdered, and Carraway's vision of him returning to the dock to daze across the lake was way too reminiscent of "Titanic". (again - a production misstep)
I prefer the 1974 version (with Robert Redford and Mia Farrow) because it was believable and less frenzied. The characters and storyline were richer and didn't have to compete with visual and audio distractions.
Written October 25, 2014
The animated cartoon quality of some of the imagery and the lavish sets and scenes did not make up for the incredibly slow development of what is really a pretty quick and exciting story. I felt as if the movie was much slower than the book--how can that even happen? As much as I love the story and enjoyed the book, and as rich as the movie's images and costumes were, I really just wanted to get up and leave about midway through.
Written October 20, 2014
As a huge Fitzgerald fan, I wasn't certain how I was going to react to this film. I can say it was visually stunning and colorful, definitely evoking the Golden era of the carefree early 1920's (specifically 1922). From the glorious parties at Gatsby's to Nick's charming guest house to the flashy Dusenberg cars, it is a sight to behold. A great deal of emphasis is placed in the details (monograms, jewelry, billboards, etc). They follow the story very closely, using dialogue from the book verbatim. Some times it sounds a little flowery and not how people talk, but that's just a sign of the times. They speak that way in the book, so you let it go. I wasn't sure about Leo as Gatsby, but when he finally makes his appearance, he owns the part in a larger than life way. The rest of the supporting cast is great, especially Joel Edgerton (Tom Buchanan). I know it isn't superheroes or alien robots, but it is a beautiful, elegant story of love & jealousy among the rich, definitely worth seeing.
Written October 31, 2014
Having seen the original and read the book, I thought this was a good re-make. Cinematography was awesome. It was a little long and boring in parts as it took a while to get going. Also, certain scenes seemed to drag out but overall it was enjoyable. Leonardo was quite pleasant on the eyes.
Written May 11, 2013
I saw it in 3D and it was mesmerizing. The production value was stellar. Expect Oscar nominations for costumes, sets, lighting, etc. The acting was excellent all around, and it was true to the novel. As a retired high school English teacher, I was pleased to see how well produced and acted the film is. Leonardo, like Tom Cruise, gets better looking with age, and his acting is always spot-on. Well done!