The Great Gatsby and the Despair of Decadence

Review of The Great Gatsby, Directed by Baz Luhrmann"There is an evil that I have seen under the sun, and it lies heavy on mankind: a man to whom God gives wealth, possessions, and honor, so that he lacks nothing of all he desires, yet God does not give him power to enjoy them..." -Ecclesiastes 6:1-2aThe Great Gatsby is a grotesque movie. Its characters are too vicious, the costumes too flamboyant, the decadence too lavish, and the tragedy too deep.  In short, it captures the excesses of … [Read more...]

Gatsby: Tragic Hero of Hope

Review The Great Gatsby, Directed by Baz LuhrmannI rarely disagree with what the internet tells me to think about a movie, but today I do. The critics dislike Baz Luhrmann’s adaptation of The Great Gatsby. It has a 45 percent rating on Rotten Tomatoes. They are wrong. Gatsby is a fine film.Baz Luhrmann is a highly distinctive filmmaker. He specializes in rapid editing, odd angles, swooping cameras, deliberate overacting, highly stylized sets and settings—all punctuated by a score closely … [Read more...]

Chasing the Orgastic Future with Jay Gatsby

Review of The Great Gatsby by F. Scott FitzgeraldThe first time I read The Great Gatsby, I was high on codeine—recovering from surgery—and had vivid hallucinatory dreams of the green light every night for a week. Almost twenty years later, the trailer for Baz Luhrmann’s forthcoming screen adaptation is making the rounds, and I see that Luhrmann was also on drugs while making the film. Somehow this seems appropriate.The Great Gatsby (1925) did not win the Pulitzer Prize or any other presti … [Read more...]