The Grand Budapest Hotel Review (2014)

Add another great film to Wes Anderson’s résumé. The Grand Budapest Hotel is wonderful. Not only does it have wonderful story-telling, but it’s filled with a great cast and wondrous visuals.

The narration of the film is Inception-esque: a story, within a story, within a story. The Author (Tom Wilkinson) begins to tell a story where we travel to the past to 1968, where the author’s younger self (Jude Law), the current manager of the hotel, meets the Grand Budapest Hotel’s owner, Mr. Moustafa (F. Murray Abraham). From that point on, Mr. Moustafa launches into the tale of how he acquired such an odd establishment. Again, the film travels to the past, to 1932, where we meet Gustave H (Ralph Fiennes), the Hotel’s manager, overseeing what was once, a prosperous, and thriving hotel. Along the way, he acquires a new Lobby Boy, Zero (Tony Revolori), and the film proceeds to focus on their relationship and the events that brought them closer together, including Gustave H being accused of murder.

Similar to many of Anderson’s films, the cinematography consists of vivid, contrasting colors and long-tracking shots. It’s an homage to old films and has a vintage feel to it. The visuals are entrancing and adds depth to the storytelling. The whole film is pretty much eye-candy.  Furthermore, the film is very comedic. There are certainly many laugh-out-loud moments, mixed with heartbreaking moments.  Ralph Fiennes as Gustave H was perfect, as this enigmatic but quirky man. He delivers all the comedic lines perfectly and is certainly the stand out. Though Gustave H’s character is comedic and hysterical, Fiennes adds more, showing vulnerability deep within the character.  Ralph Fiennes is definitely not the only stand out. All the actors are brilliant in the roles they play, and there are certain surprise appearances in the film that I won’t go on about. Just watch the film.

This film surprised me. This film was not just about the growing friendship and relationship between a manager and his lobby boy, or the history about the Grand Budapest Hotel, but it also referenced the Nazi Regime and their rise to power, even adding more depth to the film.

The Grand Budapest Hotel was extremely entertaining, mixed with great storytelling, phenomenal cinematography, and fantastic performances. Wes Anderson delivers another wonderful film, and it is a must see.

4.5/5

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Gravity Movie Review

 

“In space, no one can hear you scream…”

Gravity is directed by Alfonso Cuarón and stars Sandra Bullock as Dr. Ryan Stone and George Clooney as Matt Kowalski.

The movie starts out already in space, and it’s a sight to see. The camera circles around the Earth and you’re immersed at the sight. You already feel like you’re there. One look at this movie and you know the special effects are out of this world. 

Stone and Kowalski are up there working on the Hubble Telescope. Dr. Stone is pretty much just a scientist who got her project funded and she’s implementing that into Hubble. You can tell she’s scared and is focused on her job so she can leave. Kowalski is different.  He’s a trained astronaut, who has been up in space several times. His attitude is opposite to Stone’s. He’s carefree and knows that in these situations, you have to be relaxed. It’s a mellow mood but as the audience, you can’t help but be tense. Most has seen the trailers and you’re just anticipating when the debris will hit.

Eventually the debris does hit and like many, I was at the edge of my seat.  Everything is happening so fast. Sound doesn’t travel in space and you’re just seeing it all hit and really, the only sound you’re hearing is from the astronauts–from the inside of their helmets. It was shocking and terrifying to see this situation because it is so realistic. There is so much space trash up there and over time, it’s accumulating even more. From that point on, Stone and Kowalski have to figure out how to survive and get back home… in space…. a place so barren and enormous. There is no gravity. Their oxygen tanks will eventually run low. The debris that hit them will certainly come back. And there is no communication with anybody down on Earth. This is really the definition of being alone. 

Stone has never been in space. She’s just a scientist doing research. She’s had training and not anywhere near to Kowalski’s. Of course she would be terrified. She’s in space and she doesn’t know if she’ll live. This movie is basically about Stone. Yes it costars Clooney as Kowalski, but this movie centers around Stone. It’s a character piece. One of the main points of this movie is to see Stone evolve. In the beginning, she’s scared and panicky. She can’t get her breathing under control. She has to learn to control that and to settle down and think. Think of ways she can get to Earth and how to accomplish that. Along the way, you lean events from her past that can help understand who she is and why she is this way. Sandra Bullock was phenomenal as this character. She portrayed the character so well seeing the different emotions she is going through. At one point, when she was breathing fast and was lost and scared, it took me a while to realize that I too was breathing as fast as her. I was truly scared for her. That with the combination with the scenery just took my breath away, literally. My heart was ready to burst out of my chest (No Alien) and my stomach did drop several times. I haven’t felt that way in a movie in years and I can’t put into words how much I love this movie. 

This movie WILL be nominated for an Oscar. Bullock, I hope, will be nominated for Best Actress, and it will win Best Special Effects. I haven’t seen the Hobbit or Thor yet, but I bet that this movie will exceed that. This movie is the definition of a space thriller. You’re in for the whole ride. You feel what the characters are feeling and you’re just sucked into the scenery all around them. This is one of my favorite movies of the year.

The score was fantastic and just made the situations more tense. It was perfectly used in the movie and only heightened the tone. 

I give this movie: 5/5

*I originally gave it lower but after I thought about it, there aren’t really any faults in the movie. It was amazing and truly spectacular. I highly recommend it.

Short Term 12 Movie Review

In the midst of films such as The World’s End, Elysium, Kick-Ass 2, and numerous summer movies, you become overwhelmed by these movies, full of action and explosions. But then there’s a movie that sneaks in, coming out of nowhere, that makes you stop and think about life. A movie that tugs at the heartstrings and makes you feel emotions reminding you how powerful a simple film can be. Short Term 12 did just that.

This film centers around a group home which houses abused and troubled children and the individuals that work there. We specifically see the story play out through the eyes of Grace, who’s basically the supervisor at the place. We see the kids from an outside perspective at first, seeing their daily activities, from the time they wake up to the time they go to sleep. But then it starts going deeper where we meet two children that live there: Marcus and Jayden.

The movie starts out in a joyous tone where Mason, a worker at the home, tells of a funny story involving one of the kids at the home. But then the tone changes when we meet one of the children for the first time, running away from the home, screaming profanities at the top of his lungs. At that point, we realize how serious this movie was.

One of the kids Jayden, has just transferred to the home. She’s an angry child, filled with rage, and masks her emotions with her sarcastic wit. Her journey is done well, seeing how her mind works and the emotions she gives off. We see the growing relationship between Grace and Jayden as they are mirror reflections of each other. Jayden has a haunting tale especially through the story of The Shark and the Octopus seeing the difficulty of her opening up and being ashamed of experiencing it. Seeing Jayden struggle, Grace starts to open up about her past. She too is a troubled individual and we get to see one of the reasons why she works at the home in the first place.

Marcus on the other hand has been living at the home for quite some time and will be turning 18 in about a week. His story was the one that really connected with me. He’s a kid with a tough exterior. His childhood is coming to an end which means he will be an adult soon, meaning that he will have to leave Short Term 12. We see that difficulty of him struggling to face the fact that he will leave the only place he’s called home. He’s gonna leave his sanctuary. We see him grow as a person, seeing his layers be peeled away. He’s a quiet boy, only expressing his thoughts through a rap. After a meltdown he experienced, he opened up letting Mason hear one of his songs. This was one of the most powerful scenes and the most haunting. Just in the span of one song, he opens up and he becomes the most vulnerable. His voice starts off strong, angry and powerful. His lyrics were full of profanities especially towards his mother. But as it plays out, it becomes deeper and his voice starts to crack and his eyes start to water. “Look into my eyes so you know what it’s like, to live a life not knowing what a normal life’s like.” And when it ends with that, it was utter silence both in the movie and in the theaters.

The whole movie was pretty much an emotional fest. But there were upbeat moments. There were surprise, joyous moments, that relieved the tension throughout the film. It crushes your heart at one point leaving you with tears gushing down your face and then the next thing you know, you’re laughing hysterically and you’re smiling with such relief.

What I found most interesting is that throughout this movie, we never see the abusers or any of the abuse played out. All we see is the outcome of those actions. We see the emotional outrage the kids face due to the abuse. We see their point of views of the abuse. In addition to the challenges the kids are experiencing internally, we see them struggle with reliance of drugs and the hardship the system faces trying to understand what these kids need.

Director and filmmaker, Destin Daniel Cretton does a wonderful job displaying a real life scenario of a group home and the relationships the workers have with the children. It could be because he spent a year and a half in a group home as well, just before he attended film school. I don’t think anybody could have done it as well as him. Certain scenes in this film are actually based on real life experiences of Cretton as a worker.

Brie Larson as Grace, is one of the best things about this movie. She plays it real and normal having a subtlety to her performance. Her performance is perfect and stunning playing a person dealing with mixed emotions and one that has a”hot and cold” nature. Her portrayal of Grace is definitely Oscar worthy and should be nominated for one. Actually, Short Term 12 is a film that I hope would be taken into consideration for an Oscar.

If you can’t tell by my review, this movie is a definite must see. It’s one of those films that’s a whole different cinematic universe. It reminded me why I love movies so much. The poignant moments in the film mixed with the upbeat moments were haunting and heartbreaking. The movie never gets melodramatic and “soap-operatic”. It just portrays a realism to these situations.  Those scenes mixed with the top notch performances delivered a truly masterful experience.

4.6/5

Pacific Rim Movie Review (Spoilers!)

Holy crap. Well Pacific Rim is here! Must I tell you to get you excited for this movie? Of course not. Everyone’s excited for this film. It has big monsters fighting robots. Director Guillermo del Toro redefines the definition of fun in the theaters.Talk about a ride.

The movie in the very beginning defines the words Jaeger and Kaiju which means hunter and beast. It talks about a portal that opened from under the ocean and the Kaijus entering Earth through that. They caused destruction and millions of deaths. To combat these beasts, they had to create monsters of their own, Jaegers. From then on, it focuses on the main character, a Jaeger pilot by the name of Raleigh Becket (Charlie Hunnam). They tell you early on about how piloting the Jaeger works. There must be two running the Jaeger as it is too much to handle for one, and the two pilots must have immaculate chemistry. Their minds are interconnected running the Jaeger as one, knowing everything about each other, and knowing how the other feels at the same time. So when Raleigh Becket loses his fellow co-pilot/brother, he felt the death as it happened and stayed away from the Jaegers and focused on constructing the wall. But he makes a return when Stacker Pentecost (Idris Elba) recruits him back. Pentecost has lost funding of the Jaeger program, and with only a few Jaegers left, he seeks out Becket, knowing him as one of the best.

They make their way to the base in Hong Kong. They meet Mako Mori (Rinko Kikuchi), Becket’s future co-pilot. She has a neat backstory, being basically a tortured soul. Pentecost was reluctant to put her out there because of his fatherly protectiveness over her and because of her rage and taste for revenge against the Kaijus. Becket and her have a rough start when Becket accidentally got out of the drift remembering the accident of when his brother’s life was taken, which caused Mori to have a flashback to her childhood. Mori was put into a trance and almost destroyed the base. The two were grounded. But when two Kaijus came out of the portal and all Jaegers were non-functional, it was up to Mori and Becket and their Jaeger, Gipsy Danger, to combat the two by themselves. Talk about special effects. Wow. Just spectacular. It’s not like Transformers where you don’t know what the heck was going on. You could actually follow it and the whole time you’re blown away. In some of the scenes, your jaw drops. You start thinking, “Holy crap! Is that even happening?” And the 3D just adds to it. That is how 3D is done. You get immersed into the scene more with them. Anyways, Becket and Mori successfully kills both Kaijus but as Pentecost states, “Though this may be harsh, there is no time for celebration.” The portal is still open and in a few days or in a few hours, more Kaijus will come out and the Jaegers have to be 100% operational by then.

In the meanwhile, a scientist named Dr. Newton Geizler has been studying Kaijus for years trying to figure out everything about them. He had a sudden idea of drifting with the Kaiju brain, similar to how the two pilots connect together in a Jaeger. Though no one believed it to be possible, he managed to do it and see the memories of the Kaiju. He realizes their motives. However, he needs a full functional brain to see everything. He seeks out a black market dealer, Hannibal Chau (Ron Perlman) who basically makes a dealing selling Kaiju organs. Perlman’s character of Chau is a fun one who brings some comic relief to the movie. After an attack, Dr. Geizler managed to obtain a brain from a baby Kaiju.

Pentecost came up with a plan to close the portal. If the portal doesn’t close soon, there would be more and more Kaijus coming. With two Jaegers, they make their way underwater to basically blow up the portal with basically a nuclear bomb. Just as they were nearing the portal, Kaijus appear, blocking their way to the entrance. But Dr. Geizler and Dr. Hermann Gottlieb rush in and alerted them that their plan wasn’t going to work. They would have to pretend to be a Kaiju to get into the portal. If they continued with their plan, the bomb would only bounce back and be ineffective. They continued fighting underwater where one Jaeger ultimately makes a sacrifice for the other to continue. Grabbing a dead Kaiju, one of the Jaegers fall into the portal and make their way to the other side. After a few complications, the bomb detonates while the two pilots escape in their pods. This ending was very Avengers-esque. That was the only thing that bothered me but I still freaking loved it.

This movie is a must see. This is the definition of a summer blockbuster and probably the most fun I had in theaters all year. The performances were fine and gotta love Elba’s “Cancelling the Apocalypse” speech. It was Independence Day-esque. Some say that the story was weak and cliche and that the characters were one dimensional. It was and they were. But usually with this type of movie, I say screw it. I’m here to have fun and see some crazy action. And that’s what I got. Del Toro did a fantastic job with this movie and with the visuals. Is it too early to say an Oscar nom for the VFX team? And I’m only gonna say this a few times in my life but the 3D was outstanding. I’m not saying you have to. I never tell anyone to see any movie in 3D cuz I still think it’s a waste of money and hate wearing those glasses. But, if you can chip in a few bucks more, the 3D was worth it. It only immerses you into the film a whole lot more. In addition, the score for this movie was fantastic. I mean it was Ramin Djawadi (Iron Man, Game of Thrones, etc) so it was to be expected.

I give this film:

4.3/5

RED 2 (Spoiler-Free Movie Review)

RED 2. The movie you’ve all been waiting for… has arrived not quite arrived but I’m here to tell you that it’s awesome!

The team is back sans Morgan Freeman as you would know if you’ve seen the first movie. You got Frank Moses back, played by Bruce Willis, trying to live a normal life with his new girlfriend, Sarah Ross (Mary-Louise Parker). All is well until he notices Interpol is trying to hunt him down. He teams up with his best-friend, the insane but dangerous Marvin Boggs, played by the wonderful John Malkovich. Along through his travels and attempts to clear his name, he comes upon a Cold War project, a bomb that was sneaked into Russia and has been successfully activated. In his attempt to diffuse it, he seeks help from an old friend, and the creator of the bomb, Edward Bradley, played by the outstanding Anthony Hopkins. He’s been kept in isolation in a mental hospital for years and they help him escape. We find Victoria, out of retirement, and is one of the best assassins in the business. She’s been instructed to hunt down Frank Moses and to terminate him. And she does so. Well, not really. Or maybe. Gotta watch it fellow dudes and dudettes. And ANOTHER individual is instructed to kill him. The very dangerous, Han, who is quite the bad-ass if I do say so myself.  We also see Moses reunited with an old flame of his much to Sarah’s delight. Catherine Zeta-Jones is still good looking as ever. 

I usually prefer the original movie much more than the sequels but for this one, I can’t say it. I liked this better though not by much. I found it to be funnier, more realistic (not saying much), and the action scenes were still great though corny as ever. Dean Parisot did a great job directing this movie (and for directing one of my all-time fave, Galaxy Quest). The performances were outstanding. Like the first movie, I was still in awe that all these incredible actors were acting together in the same scene. And like they didn’t have enough star power in the first Red, they had to add Sir Anthony Hopkins. Geez.  Must I tell you that Bruce Willis was great and kicked serious butt? Or must I tell you that John Malkovich was outstanding and stole mostly ever scene he was in? Do I have to tell you that Helen Mirren is the Queen of Bad-Assery? No! You guys already knew that especially from the first film. But I do have to tell you one thing. Sir Anthony Hopkins was perfect. In any role he’s given and he did not disappoint. Though I was disappointed. I was expecting him to eat their livers in the end with some fava beans and a nice chianti.(Not really. Maybe.) His role as Edward Bradley is a good little role for him but I don’t want to give anything away. Anyways, Neal McDonough as the villain, didn’t do anything for me. I didn’t find him at all to be menacing. 

Unlike the first film, I found that this movie got better as it progressed..This sequel had more thought to it and I liked the transitions in this one much better than the last one. It was more comic booky which I enjoyed. I really liked the pace of this movie and found it to flow really well. The plot was simple but a little convoluted. But the music really bothered me. It sounded like a broken record and at times I thought they hadn’t finished editing it. I really wish they’d change that. I have to say, if you enjoyed the first one, you’d for sure enjoy this sequel. What surprised me was that this movie wasn’t entirely predictable. There were a few good plot twists. Other than that, there was nothing new to this movie. Just a fun ride. A fun mindless film and a good summer movie. 

I give this movie:

3.7/5

The Internship Movie Review (Spoiler-Free)

 

 

I first came into this movie ready to be disappointed. I expected a film that had a few jokes that are laughable but in the end it’ll be utter garbage. I mean Vince Vaughn just did The Watch, a truly horrible film that no one should watch even if they’re blind or deaf, and I thought it was going to be like that. Or it was going to be Wedding Crashers part 2.  But I was wrong.

This movie stars Vince Vaughn and Owen Wilson who play Billy and Nick, two partner salesmen struggling to make a sale especially in the time of technology. They eventually lose their jobs going off to their separate ways until Billy gains an idea of applying for an internship in Google. Together, Billy and Nick venture into Google after quite a disastrous interview, managing to get in by one vote. Like many would expect, they were the odd men out. To receive an internship, each person forms a group and in their group, they must overcome a series of obstacles and solve problems, and in the end, only one group out of hundreds can win the internship. With Billy and Nick’s group of outsiders, they become close together almost like family after a shaky start, and conquer each obstacle along the way.

Now, this movie isn’t going to win the Oscars or anything but it’s a very fun, comedic movie that I enjoyed throughout the duration of the film.

The movie started off slow and that’s when I began to thought of my prejudgment to be true.  But then they reach Google, and that’s where the movie took off. There were lots of laughs throughout the movie and I thoroughly enjoyed much of the movie especially when they play Quidditch. Owen Wilson was great in the movie as Nick, and actually didn’t annoy me like he usually does. Vince Vaughn was also good in his role as Billy and it took me longer to warm up to him but in the end, I enjoyed his performance and his character. The supporting roles were good too and enjoyable.

There were surprising cameos by many stars. Will Ferrell was funny and I’m glad he only had a small role. Any role that John Goodman does is great.

Now this isn’t a movie that you have to absolutely see and go out to the theaters for. But, if you’re feeling stressed out, angry at the world, or just plain pissed off, this might be the movie for you. It’ll make you laugh and it’s a feel good movie. It doesn’t have the best plot and a lot of it is stupid, but you just don’t care. Because throughout the movie, you’re having fun and smiling the whole time and wishing you work for Google, or wish you bought a stock from Google before they took off (regrets).

 

3-out-of-5-stars

The Great Gatsby Review (Spoilers!)

the-great-gatsby-movie

“Gatsby, what Gatsby?”

The Great Gatsby opens in a Sanitarium where we meet Nick Carraway, played by Tobey Maguire, as a man suffering from depression and anger issues. Here, he starts talking about his past in New York and how everybody repulsed him, except for one man, and that man was Gatsby, played by Leonardo DiCaprio. His stored anger and issues compelled his psychiatrist to recommend to Nick to write about what exactly happened all those years ago.

We go back to the past where we see Nick Carraway arrive in New York for the first time. He finds a house in the West Egg next to Gatsby’s house. We see him take a job in the Stock Market, where in the 1920’s, it’s considered a prosperous job, where many opportunities can be found.  He meets with his cousin, Daisy Buchanan played by Carey Mulligan, who lives in the East Egg, otherwise considered as “old money”. We also meet her friend, Jordan Baker, who Nick takes an interest on, and Tom Buchanan played by Joel Edgerton, Daisy’s two-timing husband. Here, Jordan asks Nick if he’s ever met Gatsby, and in this scene, we see recognition appear on Daisy’s place when Gatsby’s name has been said, propelling her to utter the words: “Gatsby, what Gatsby?”  They have dinner and an awkward dinner at that. Tom’s mistress, Myrtle Wilson, calls during the dinner, but here Nick finds out more about Gatsby and his apparent “elaborate parties.”

We see Gatsby’s silhouette throughout this film but we never actually see Gatsby until twenty minutes into the movie. We meet him in one of his parties. Nick Carraway receives an invitation to his party, but the thing is , no one else receives one. You don’t need one. Anybody could enter his house and attend the party. And what a fantastic party it is. The special effects are great in this movie but it takes the audience out of the story. There is a thing called “too much style”. It’s all very pretty but everything is flowing in your face and it becomes too artsy for me. The reveal of Gatsby is definitely overdone. The music and the fireworks exploding in the background is just overdone. It’s actually quite laughable. Now in every party, you can find music. Now, the setting of this movie is in the 1920s. The music that a person would expect would be a jazz, old age music. But nope. Baz Luhrmann and Jay-Z collaborated and made a soundtrack, a modern soundtrack. So throughout this film, you can hear hip-hop and modern music. It did not work for me. I didn’t understand the reason for it. Yes, Gatsby is timeless. But a movie can be timeless with real jazz music. I found this whole part of the movie to be like a music video. No substance at all.

We see a bond emerge between Gatsby and Nick throughout this film. Gatsby always seem to seek Nick’s approval in everything he does and about his past. We see why eventually. Because Gatsby wants to use Nick to be closer to Daisy, the love of his life. The reason he does everything he does. In a comedic scene, we see Gatsby panicking as Nick and Gatsby await for the arrival of Daisy. When they first meet, none of them know exactly what to say. But Nick pushes Gatsby in the right direction and immediately, Gatsby and Daisy reconnect into the past lovers they originally were. Daisy and Gatsby begin an affair and Tom Buchanan begins to become suspicious. He delves into Gatsby’s past, and throughout all of this, the truth is slowly revealed about Gatsby. Gatsby invites Daisy and Tom to one of his parties. Daisy and Gatsby sneak off into the woods where Daisy expresses her desire to run away with Gatsby. Shortly after Tom and Daisy leave, Gatsby and Nick have a talk where Nick explains to Gatsby that, “You can’t repeat the past.” This is also one of the main themes of this movie as well. The past is what drives Gatsby to becomes the man that he is. He’s still holding on that sliver of hope that Daisy will fall back in his arms just like the past.  Gatsby and Daisy, the next day, planned on telling Tom about the affair and they’re want to become together. But things didn’t go as planned especially when Daisy got cold feet, and instead told everybody she wanted to go out. Tom, using Gatsby’s car, drove Nick and Jordan, and Gatsby, using Tom’s car, took Daisy. Along the way, Tom stopped at Wilson’s house, where he received shocking news that Wilson and Myrtle were both planning to head out West. Tom’s lack of control worries him. Both women in his life were leaving him and he knew he couldn’t allow that. At the hotel the group is staying at, Gatsby finally told Tom that Daisy and him were together and Daisy is planning on leaving him. Gatsby claims that Daisy never even loved him at all. Never. In the beginning, Daisy stood strong and agreed on everything Gatsby said. But, Tom managed to play Daisy, stating the many events they experienced together through their marriage, where Daisy cracks stating that she did love him. Tom then turn things around on Gatsby, exposing the secrets Gatsby has been hiding. That Gatsby makes his money through bootlegging, and all in all, he’s a fake. He couldn’t possibly provide for Daisy. Gatsby lashes out on Tom, silencing everyone in the room. Daisy becomes horrified by Gatsby, and that seemed to be the final straw for her. Tom, satisfied with the events, told Gatsby to drive Daisy home, while he brings home Nick and Jordan. In a sad turn of events, Nick states, “I just realized it was my birthday.”

Unlike before, Tom actually drives his own blue car, while Gatsby drives his custom-yellow car. But as Gatsby and Daisy were driving home, Myrtle runs out to the road, after being harassed by her husband about having an affair. Due to Tom driving Gatsby’s car earlier in the day, she believed it to be Tom and instead gets run over. Tom, Nick, and Jordan arrive at the scene. Tom then tells Wilson about who was driving the car. The same man that was having an affair with Myrtle. He lies and says it to be Gatsby. They arrive home where Nick spots Gatsby outside of Tom’s mansion. Nick is anguished with Gatsby with the hit and run, but learns that it was Daisy driving the car. Gatsby made Nick promise not to tell a soul. Gatsby stays outside of the mansion to ensure that Daisy is safe. But Nick, few minutes before, found out that Daisy and Tom were planning to run away together. Nick didn’t have the heart to tell Gatsby such a thing. Gatsby comes home at around 3 am where Nick stays up with Gatsby helping him with cleaning and covering the car. At the same time, Gatsby decided to tell the whole truth to Nick, all about his life. That he was born a poor farm boy. That he ran away from his family, believing he was destined for something greater. He rescued a millionaire in the ocean and believed he was going to receive some of the inheritance, but the millionaire’s family prevented him from doing so. And that’s where he met Dan Cody, the man that helped him out, especially in the bootlegging business, and eventually, making him a very rich man. As the sun rose, Gatsby asked Nick to stay for the rest of the day. Nick declined and claimed he had to go to work. As Nick leaves, he provides a compliment to Gatsby, the only one he’s ever given. Gatsby, waiting for the call from Daisy, decides to go out for a swim. And as he swims, the phone rings. The butler reaches out and answers it just as Gatsby is shot by Wilson. Gatsby falls to his death believing the caller to be Daisy, but in fact, it was Nick. At the same time, Wilson commits suicide.

We reach a conclusion to the story. Gatsby, dead, was convicted of the murder of Myrtle. Tom and Daisy ran off never to return. Nick was the only one Gatsby had, and the only one who visited Gatsby’s funeral. Nick becomes angry at everybody he’s ever interacted with in New York, especially with Tom and Daisy, who were careless people that destroyed anything they ever touched. He eventually leaves New York and that’s where we see Nick finish the story. We see Nick at the end, change the name of the book from “Gatsby” to “The Great Gatsby”.

It’s not a film I recommend on seeing. In fact, I prefer the 1974 version with Robert Redford. Leonardo DiCaprio was fantastic as Gatsby who I felt was carrying the film. Joel Edgerton was also great as Tom. The rest of the actors, I felt, didn’t really add much. Carey Mulligan, I felt, overdid her role as Daisy, and Tobey Maguire, to me, could have been replaced. He wasn’t bad but wasn’t great either. He didn’t add anything to the character. The movie was lackluster. I often found myself dozing off. This was a case of style over substance. Everything was overdone and was way too showy. The best part of the film was the conclusion. I wanted more from this film. This book is not a romance, but a tragedy, filled with themes that are showcased throughout. I wanted to see more about the difference of old money and new money. I wanted to see more of the theme of the American Dream. I just wanted more. This movie had so much potential but just wasn’t done right. Maybe, I didn’t like it because I had so much hype for this movie. From many interviews, it seemed like Baz Luhrmann knew what he was doing. That he knew the book and what it represented. He claimed that he was going to stay true to the storyline. He told the same story from the book but barely incorporated any of the themes and I am forever disappointed. I’m not saying this movie is terrible and bad, I quite enjoyed some of the scenes. For anybody that loves the book, “The Great Gatsby”, go ahead and see it. You might enjoy it. For those that don’t really care about the book, skip it. There are better movies to watch like Iron Man 3 or the 1974, “The Great Gatsby”. Or you could wait for Star Trek next week.

3-out-of-5-stars