This Rotten Week: Predicting The Great Gatsby And Peeples Reviews
Well the summer movie season is officially underway. It kicked off with Tony Stark flying around in his red and yellow suit and continues with a whole host of A-listers galavanting around the Hamptons in the roaring Twenties. oh, and Tyler Perry gets thrown in too.
Just remember, I'm not reviewing these movies, but rather predicting where they'll end up on the Tomatometer. Let's take a look at what This Rotten Week has to offer.
The Great Gatsby
I, like you, read the Cliffs Notes for The Great Gatsby in high school, so I think we can all consider ourselves experts on this classic work of literature. And though the great American novel can now be boiled down to a Wikipedia entry (adding a whole new dimension to the high schooler’s arsenal of evasive literary tactics) having a film on hand to crosscheck the “visuals” in F. Scott Fitzgerald’s classic would have been a nice resource in Mrs. Moore’s eleventh grade English class. Ah, to be the youth of today, with every little thing on hand so nothing ever actually gets done.
Though it should be said, those looking to use the film as the basis for their spring oral report might want to ignore the soundtrack (Jay-Z and Jack White didn’t roar through the Twenties) and focus more on the character development of dudes like Nick Carraway (Tobey Maguire), Daisy Buchanan (Carey Mulligan) and of course the ever-elusive, mysteriously present Jay Gatsby (Leo D). It is their relationships on which the story is built and how their opulence and ego devolves into sh#$ like getting run over by a super sleek twenties roadster (it’s yellow and looks fantastic!).
Baz Luhrman (Moulin Rouge-76%, Australia-55%) knows a thing or two about big, showy, over-the-top productions (much like the parties at Gatsby’s pad) and has given the film the look of the times, if the early twentieth century was kicked up a high definition, flashy notch. Less a period piece and more a chance for everyone to play dress up, something about the trailer for this film just rubs me the wrong way (much like my feelings on 42, which I missed the critical boat on). It could be “No Church in the Wild” blasting over a 1920’s New York landscape, or it could the quasi-musical feel to the flick. But I just don’t think it blows critics away. Of course, it’s too big, too star-powered, too visually significant to finish below fifty percent. But I don’t see it climbing to other-worldly heights. Something in the seventies feels about right. And I look forward to a generation of high schoolers giving reports that lead with, “Oh man, Gatsby is so freaking hot, just looking at, errrr I mean reading about him was so errrr, awesome.” The Rotten Watch for The Great Gatsby is
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