The Great Gatsby DVD
Baz Luhrmann’s The Great Gatsby doesn’t pop onscreen, it roars to life in an explosion of color, sound, and lively dialogue. In the latest, he was helped by F. Scott Fitzgerald, who wrote the beloved novel the movie is based on. The rest is all characteristically Luhrmann: loud, vibrant, and opulent.

Luhrmann has always favored the over-the-top in his work, and a story about the richest of the rich and the boredest of the bored suits his decadent sensibilities perfectly. We’ve seen this look from the director in the past. The color palate and the vibrancy Luhrmann chose for his latest theatrical endeavor is reminiscent of 2001’s Moulin Rouge, a film that comes to life via statement pieces like a vibrant windmill and an elephant boudoir that help to highlight both the period and whimsy of the characters at the same time. In Gatsby, the statement piece is Jay Gatsby’s masculine yellow automobile, a piece of innovation that mirrors Gatsby’s own rise to the top of the food chain. Like the yellow automobile, everything in Luhrmann’s The Great Gatsby is fast, including the film’s wit and its transitions between scenes, but it makes for a spectacle that’s all the more enjoyable because of it.

To bring the novel to life on the big screen, the director signed on an all-star cast that includes Leonardo DiCaprio, who shoehorns in more than his fair share of “Old Sports,” Tobey Maguire, who sort of fits as the blank canvas Nick Carraway, and Carey Mulligan who has the doe eyes and dispassionate voice to play none other than Daisy Buchanan. The endeavor comes together in a movie that is both similar to and wholly unlike Fitzgerald’s Jazz Age novel. But if you forget the source material the movie stems from, it’s certainly the most fun movie of the summer, and maybe the year.

My Blu-ray copy of the film wasn’t working, so I can’t talk about the quality of the HD picture or the extras. Per Warner Bros. Home Entertainment, Blu-ray 3D, Blu-ray, and DVD copies of the film all come with the same extras, but these were all loaded onto the Blu-ray copy in my set. The extras did sound pretty cool, including an alternate ending and a featurette following the lengthy group of musicians who offered to contribute to The Great Gatsby soundtrack. You can order The Great Gatsby over at Amazon.

Other Special Features:
The Greatness of Gatsby
"Within and Without" With Tobey Maguire
The Swinging Sounds of Gatsby
The Jazz Age
Razzle Dazzle: The Fashion of the '20s
Fitzgerald's Visual Poetry
Gatsby Revealed
Deleted Scenes with Alternate Ending
1926: The Great Gatsby Trailer

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