“What’s all this for?”
Oozing of wonderment, narrator Nick Carraway (Tobey Maguire) posed this question to Jordan Baker (Elizabeth Debicki), as he navigated through a lavish Gatsby soiree. It was the first of which Carraway had attended; and this one, at the personal invitation of Jay Gatsby (Leonardo DiCaprio), himself. At the time, Carraway could not have imagined the significance of the question he’d ask; though the answer would most dramatically be revealed.
Gatsby has an obsession — Daisy Buchanan (Carey Mulligan), who is Carraway’s cousin. Aware that Buchanan and Carraway are related, Gatsby personally invites Carraway to one of his bashes. The invite is initially just meant to serve means to a Daisy-end. Gatsby, however, takes a liking to Carraway, and the two form a vintage bromance.
A modified adaptation of F. Scott Fitzgerald’s novel, Baz Luhrmann’s version of The Great Gatsby chronicles a maniacal love story. Gatsby and Buchanan share an intimate history, that preceded her current marriage to Tom Buchanan (Joel Edgerton).
After finally reconnecting with Daisy, physically, Gatsby is determined to win her back at all costs. Gatsby’s craze for Daisy is aberrant. Daisy becomes disoriented as she wrestles with the mental turmoil of going back to Gatsby, or staying with Tom. It is in these scenes that we see the film’s best performances. DiCaprio, Mulligan, and Edgerton simultaneously deliver gritty performances, completely captivating audiences.
From a visual perspective, Luhrmann spares no expenses. The film exemplifies the Roaring Twenties time period, completely. And as SCO stated in the film’s edition of Sound Session, the music selection is superb. The vocals of Lana Del Rey provide an electric authenticity to some of DiCaprio and Mulligan’s most passionate scenes.