Cedar Crest College newspaper since 1923
by Laura D’Amato
“The Great Gatsby” was released on DVD early last week, and it was shown last Friday during Weekendpalooza in Samuel’s Theater. This story was set during the roaring 1920’s when jazz and illegal booze were the life of the party.
The original story was written by Francis Scott Key Fitzgerald and is one of my favorite reads. Fun fact, he is named after and related to the author of the Star Spangled Banner. One thing you have to know about Fitzgerald is that, as an author, he painstakingly double-checked each word to make sure that it all held true to the meaning of his story. For example, (and Spoiler Alert to anyone who hasn’t seen the movie!) why did the clock fall? Why couldn’t it have been a vase or a picture frame? That is because time is the most important element in this story. Gatsby was trying to turn back time, and he was also running out of it. Fitzgerald used minor details, like the clock, to always emphasize the theme of his stories.
There are also parts of the story that are about his life. Fitzgerald met and fell in love with Zelda Sayre while he was stationed in the South, just as Jay Gatsby fell in love with Daisy. Zelda refused to marry a poor man, so Fitzgerald wrote his first novel “The Side of Paradise” and attained fame and fortune before Zelda agreed to marry him. Sadly it didn’t end so perfectly for Gatsby, and it is thought that Fitzgerald wrote “The Great Gatsby” to reflect on what could have happened if Zelda hadn’t married him.
When I saw the movie on Friday, I went armed with the knowledge of reading the book and also seeing the movie while it was in theaters. I always recommend reading the book first, and kudos to my roommate for having the willpower to avoid the movie since she hasn’t read the book – it is possible! The audience here definitely had a great sense of humor for the irony in the story, which I would contribute to the common knowledge that some men are just dumb. Sorry, Leo. I also have to comment on the music that was used in the movie: whoever decided to represent the Jazz Age with rap music needs to slap themself on the forehead. There are also some parts of the book that were left out, such as a homosexual encounter between Nick Carraway and Mr. McKee, which was used to highlight the carefree nature of the 1920’s.
Now for the final reviews for the movie. Rebecca Lowe, a fifth year senior and a social work major, gave the movie three out of five stars. Takevia Denmie, a freshman psychology major, gave the movie four out of five stars and said, “I loved the music in it!” Finally, Amira Mahmoud, a freshman nursing major, gave it six out of five stars.
“It was so crazy…. Ridiculous, but it worked,” Mahmoud said.
In my opinion, the movie is a must-see, and I give it five stars. So that gives it an average of 4.5 out of five stars and makes it a must-see movie. After you’ve read the book, of course!