10 May 2013

on Gatsby and Benny

Theatre establishments have this thing of luring you to a movie then making you sit through 15 minutes worth of previews to make you come back to see more movies. If you're the type to stream new releases from the confines of your home, then Congratulations! you have not been subject to shameless advertising and audience baiting. But it's better to see films in theatres.

As I have just returned from a viewing of Gatsby, allow myself to indulge in a little review:
Beneath the layers of glitz and glamour, Baz Luhrmann's The Great Gatsby shines through as a glistening portrayal of F. Scott Fitzgerald's original text. There were many scenes that were illustrated exactly as I had imagined them while reading Gatsby- the flowing white curtains being blown haphazardly through the sunroom upon first meeting Daisy and Jordan, for example. However, despite the stunning base layer of narration, it's overlying layer of Nick Carraway and his account of Gatsby seemed slightly superfluous which includes the useless textual graphics which were probably only added for 3-dimensional effect. I don't need to see 90 seconds of Nick Carraway typing away while he's narrating and I don't need to read the words he's saying. On top of that is the final layer of opulence and grandeur that is so frequently associated with Gatsby. Some find it incredibly over the top, but I've come to understand that extravagance is a part of Gatsby and the Buchanans. Fitzgerald craftily wrote this layer of wealth into the plot to the point that without it, Gatsby would not be great. One reason why so many people are compelled to this story is because they can relate to Gatsby who, underneath his luxe pink suits, is a human being. If, in the end, you seek a number to sum up my experience of Gatsby, I'd give it a 3.8 of 5. 
 This brings me to a long-anticipated fan-girling on Benedict Cumberbatch. Prior to his exploding role as the beloved Sherlock, Benny's been on screen since 2002- we've just been too blind to notice him. Since his enigmatic fall on the season finale of Sherlock's second* season, he's played the Necromancer in The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey and will be on the silver screen once again next Friday in Star Trek into Darkness. The first I heard of his role in the upcoming Star Trek film was in a preview that I had seen right before watching The Hobbit. His face, cheekbones and all, on an IMAX screen literally made my sister burst into tears of joy. It's needless to say that he will be a familiar face on the silver screen for long into the future. But alas, I need Sherlock to get back on the air because it's been far too long and his last enigma has been badgering me endlessly.

*kudos to EW for catching a bad mistake

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