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Great Gatsby, The (1974)

Reviewed By dionwr
Posted 12/02/02 09:53:12

"What a piece of shit!"
1 stars (Total Crap)

John Huston once said that 90% of directing is casting. "The Great Gatsby" seems determined to prove the point by mis-casting every possible role.

For example, Gatsby, if you haven't read the book, is a dark man of mystery, with a really hard edge. Rumors and speculation abound about his gangster connections, and possibly dark past. To do it right, you'd need to find a face the audience has never seen before. Think a young Sean Connery, with Robert DeNiro's intensity. They cast Robert Redford. That's like casting Kevin Costner as Robin Hood.

Daisy, the woman he loves, is the greatest beauty and most mesmerizing woman any of them know. If you got the looks of Greta Garbo and the upper-class charisma of Katharine Hepburn together, you might just have a crack at it. They cast Mia Farrow. I actually like her a lot, but boy, was she wrong for this part.

Tom Buchanon is a frat-boy, athlete, captain of the football team and voted "most likely to succeed." Might have been a good role for Ed Norton or Matt Damon. They cast Bruce Dern.

I could go on, but why bother? Yes, the screenplay (by a young Francis Coppola) was terrific, and yes, they spent a ton of money on producing it. Yes, the photography was exceptional.

But if you never believe any major character at any time, WHO CARES?

Add to that a pace that resembles embalming, and you have a real turkey.

Don't be fooled--this movie is CRAP.

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