Well, I haven't read the book yet, but last night my wife and I got a sitter and went out to see the movie. Here's how things were set up heading into my first Gatsby experience:
- I had a vague idea of the plot
- I knew previous versions of the movie were not remarkably well reviewed
- I made a point of avoiding reviews, but did overhear a stranger say the movie was "not very good"
- I am not a big Leonardo DiCaprio fan
- For some reason, the movie was also being shown in 3D
- For some reason Carey Mulligan reminds me of Michelle Williams
When it finished, this older lady sitting next to me asked me what I thought and I had to be honest with her. I said, "Sadly, I have not read the book so I can't make the comparison, but I liked the movie." On my way out, my wife and I were discussing it and I summarized my thoughts more succinctly:
A good story is a good story.
And that's exactly what The Great Gatsby is. It's a good story. If the latest film stayed even remotely true to the novel I can see what all the hullabaloo was about. That F. Scott Fitzgerald guy was on to something, I'm sure of it. I can also see why some people would put the story into the category of "Classics". It had murder, intrigue, fantasy, love, sex, conflict, alcohol, and lavish parties - all set in a suburb of New York City. Hell, if all of those things aren't the ingredients for a good story, then I don't know what would be.
So it happened that a funny thing occurred after I went to see a movie... For all the right reasons I left the theatre desperately wanting to go read a book.