I’ve just recently had the pleasure of viewing The Great Gatsby on the silver screen in all its fantastical glory and it has left me feeling bereaved. All that accumulation of imagination and fantasy built up inside me since junior high, when I opened that book with a breathless declaration of favoritism, evaporated and reconstructed for the sake of the moving picture. A marvel then and a marvel now.
I knew, I think, from the very beginning of that novel – first opened on the left-hand side of AP lit where I was sat reading it for the allotted twenty minutes – I’d discovered something very special about myself and Mr. Fitzgerald. His vernacular pleased me like nothing else I’d thus far encountered insofar as fiction was concerned. I was enchanted by the rhythm and flagrant dexterity of that use of language as it melted so flawlessly together, moved smooth and soft over the landscape of my thoughts; it would cause me to wholly reevaluate what constituted a good story.
The discovery of your favorite author is something which brings with it a great and indescribable sense of comfort. Their work makes up a phantom companion available to keep you company day, night, afternoon, in any season or location, despite the wellness of the weather. It is a deeply loved and valuable thing, so feverishly cherished that you’d think your heart would break with the admiration of it. Sometimes it’s hard to dissociate and you find you’re so fully enveloped in the story that it leaves you disheveled with its ending, believing in it to such a degree that at some point it slipped from fiction and became intensely personal. Therein lies its significance. The ability of the written word to influence you in a personal way, right down to the core, is the whole damn point. What’s the purpose of book that doesn’t make you think or feel? If you don’t linger over it, follow breathless the hero step for step through his fabricated tragedy; if your heart doesn’t ache at the tenderness of it or sing through its charms or break at its inevitable demise then you, too, might want to reevaluate what constitutes a good book.
Evaluating it as a film for the sake of the story, those obvious influences of the 21st century weren’t as awfully garish at they’d been made up to be and I think that it was truly wonderfully done. I loved it and I thought it was brilliantly cast.