There's something about the new trailer for Baz Luhrmann's The Great Gatsby we've seen before, but it's not F. Scott Fitzgerald's classic story of social striving in 1920s New York. It's not even that similar to the first trailer, before Warner Bros. pushed back the 3-D film's release date, despite having some of the same shots and just a lot more Leonardo DiCaprio. No, the sense of déjà vu comes very much from Luhrmann's obvious urge to do much of the same thing here as he did with his 2001 film about love and sex and consumption in Paris, Moulin Rouge! Luhrmann takes a famous city—then the City of Light, now Jazz Age New York—and ups the surrealism of the landscape (everything's filmed in Australia anyway), all while adding seemingly incongruous modern music (Gatsby is not a musical like Moulin Rouge!, but there seem to be a number of dance scenes). And this would make anyone uncomfortable: the trailer's glimpse at Gastby's green light—one of the most famous literary symbols—looks maybe a bit too much like Rouge's Green Fairy full of... absinthe. (See a full comparison below.)
All of which is not to say the Luhrmann aesthetic won't work. We're not yet counting out the performances, even though DiCaprio seems to doing a stereotypically old time-y accent. And didn't someone once say "reserving judgements is a matter of infinite hope?" See you in May.
Now take a look at some of these parallels we've drawn. Gatsby:
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