There are spoilers below.
I'm just going to say fuck you to the reviewers and critics who really just want to bag Baz, bag the movie, say that Leo's too old, say that there's too much of the party scenes, say what the hell is Beyonce's voice doing in there in a soundtrack to a movie set in the '20s jazz age. Sometimes people just like to be picky for the sake of being able to say: yeah, I didn't like it.
Well, I'll say fuck you and also point out the following:
1. This is Baz Luhrmann we're talking about here. No, he doesn't do subtle or atmospheric in the way the Scott Fitzgerald purists would like. And, er, check out Moulin Rouge's soundtrack (Christina Aguilera), and Romeo & Juliet's soundtrack (um, a Prince song), and er the way he directed those movies, with occasional jerky contemporary roaring in your face SFX and camera work. Then come back and complain about the over-the-topness and I'll poke you in the eye.
2. Movies are always an interpretation of a book, and by all accounts this is a good one. Even Professor Paul Giles says it's a good movie and he's an American 20C Literary dude at the University of Sydney. Also, Giles Hardie rates it highly in The Age and had good rebuttals to the criticisms. And if you come back and complaining, saying those two people must be the same cause they're both called Giles, then I'll poke you in the eye again.
3. I wonder how closely a lot of the critics have read the book. I wonder if they have even read the book or if they are just spouting off. Some people say the book is 'humourless.' Oh my god, people are idiots. And for people who say that there are no likeable characters in the movie, and that Daisy is a drip and even Nick is contemptible for not helping Wilson's wife when she gets punched in the nose by Tom: read the book. They are none of them super sympathetic characters except I reckon Gatsby does become sympathetic probably because you're so damn sorry that everyone was happy to go to his parties and drink his booze yet no one went to his funeral, and also you find out what he did (or it is heavily intimated) to realise his dream of being rich and trying to get Daisy. He also has a scrap of honour because he said he was driving the car to protect Daisy. And Nick is on track to developing and maturing because he breaks off with Jordan properly and doesn't leave her hanging.
4. Baz does 'love' well, and if the Daisy and Gatsby scenes are anything like the Romeo and Juliet fishtank scene, well, yeah. That does it for me.
Sorry for the aggression, I won't really be angry if anyone comments here but I'd love some feisty discussion, fo sho.