Gatsby on Film: 1926 to now


Finishing off a Gatsby-packed birthday week, here’s the trailer for Baz Luhrmann’s Great Gatsby – which I’m sure you’ve all enjoyed already.

I’m still not convinced that we need to see it in 3D – and I’m still not convinced that Carey Mulligan is right as Daisy – but otherwise it gets a double thumbs up from me. For what it’s worth, I think Leo is perfect for Gatsby.

The 1974 adaptation (which I blogged about here) is pretty poor overall, but I do think that Mia Farrow fits unhinged Daisy pretty well – at least in terms of how I imagined her. Her acting, we can ignore. Something about that 1970s washed-out, sun-drenched camera work just adds to the feeling of restless rich people.

The two earlier adaptations are a lot harder to find in full, alas. The 1949 version seems to start with a mega spoiler, although I suppose it serves the morality lesson. I do like Alan Ladd at Gatsby – he actually has a look of Leo at times. I (sort of) like the story that Gene Tierney was thrown off the production because her beauty was TOO MUCH! No such thing as too much beauty where Daisy is concerned, in my opinion.

The 1926 (silent) version is considered a lost film as no full copies are known to survive. The above snippet of a trailer is a tantalisingly tease though – it looks completely fantastic, doesn’t it? The fact it was made just one year after the book’s release no doubt helps with the authenticity – the costumes are the best I’ve seen, even in that tiny clip. I particularly enjoy the tagline of ‘The Great Gatsby is Great’. Lois Wilson is a beautiful Daisy too – I just wish there was more footage of her in action in the role.

There was also a made-for-TV movie in 2000, featuring none other than Paul Rudd as Nick Carraway. What casting! I don’t quite understand Mira Sorvino with her ridiculous hair as Daisy – I’m not saying she needs a shingle to make a point but really, really? Toby Stephens? Really? And Nick’s house is way too nice. Still, it’s a diverting enough way to spend an hour or so.

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5 thoughts on “Gatsby on Film: 1926 to now

  1. I’m really enjoying the level of moodboard action we are being treated too in recent posts, keep up the good work Twinny. Also, I’m never sure of which post I’m actually commenting on so forgive me if this bares no relevance to this particular post. I love the ‘pink stinks’ post obvs. Twin. x

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