by Justine Love, contributing writer

If you like vintage Hollywood with great period costumes, big production and beautiful people, you will enjoy “The Great Gatsby.”

Picture this mandatory high school reading classic with a modern day hip-hop twist. That is what executive producer Jay-Z and director Baz Luhrmann have done to bring this classic to current realization for the younger movie-goers.

To refresh your memory, F. Scott Fitzgerald’s novel “The Great Gatsby” was the story of Nick Carraway’s (Tobey Maguire) journey to the Big Apple in the spring of 1922. That year was the beginning of an era of fast cars, fast women, the birth of jazz, financial wealth via the stock market and bootleggers. For a naïve Midwest young man who was trying to catch his American Dream, it was amazing.

Carraway’s life is changed when he moves next door to millionaire playboy Jay Gatsby (Leonardo DiCaprio) and how their lives spin into a spider web of impossible love, deceit, and illusions of the super rich.

The adaption of the novel is very entertaining but I was not a fan of the 3D version of the film, although movie-goers do have the options to view it in standard 2D.

Hats off to DiCaprio, his acting is beyond superb, and he was tailor-made for the role. English actress Carey Mulligan (Daisy Buchanan) is infectious as Gatsby’s love obsession, and Tobey Maguire spins a tale wonderfully in the first-person’s narrative.

All three actors will definitely be in the running for the Oscar but the clear winner will be DiCaprio.

On a scale of heartbeats — story line (5 heartbeats), set/costume design (5 heartbeats), choice of doing this in 3D (0 heartbeats).

Save your movie dollars and wait for it to come out on DVD — it will be a great date night at home.

See you at the concession stand!

Justine Love is the director of Community and Public Affairs for CBS Washington, including WPGC. Check back for more Reel Talk reviews.


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