Wednesday, January 29, 2014

THE GREAT GATSBY - 2 nominations

Costume Design - Catherine Martin
Production Design - Catherine Martin (Production Design), Gene Serdena (Set Decoration)

Drag queens and period pieces are God's gift to costume and production designers.  Add that to the opulent themes in Fitzgerald's Great Gatsby, and you have a recipe for true success.  While I watched this film, I remember thinking, that's it for the costumes and production Oscar races, these guys have it all locked up.  Not only that, but in general, even when a competing film is sweeping the categories for which it is nominated, costume design tends to be a category which wins on merit and not simply on buzz, and the same can be said for production design awards.

We all know the story of The Great Gatsby - Nick Carraway (Tobey McGuire) is pulled into the opulent lifestyle of his neighbor Jay Gatsby.  Gatsby is secretly in love with Carraway's cousin Daisy (Carey Mulligan) who is married to a dastardly man who cheats on and abuses her.  Can Gatsby's and Daisy's pre-war love be recaptured?  Will Carraway turn away from his mid-Western sensibilities and be sucked into the bad behaviors associated with extreme wealth and debauchery?  Baz Luhrmann attempts the story with the addition of a modern soundtrack and big production dance numbers.

While Gatsby was truly a sight to behold, the movie was just terrible.  The performances were all mediocre - some overplayed, some underplayed.  Off hand, I can't think of many movies which had me considering whether I should sit through all the way to the end, but this was one of them.  Bottom line review, don't bother.  If you want to see the costuming and production design, google them and you'll get all you need to know about the film.  Somehow, Luhrmann took a great book and turned it into a bad movie even though the story is the same.  That's talent, but the wrong kind.

Haven't seen the movie?
Watch The Great Gatsby Movie Trailer

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