12 December 2006 | radkins
Nick Guest meet Nick Carraway. "Gatsby" updated.
"The Line of Beauty," which I recently saw on Logo, is a wonderful film, but it reminded me heavily of "The Great Gatsby" in that it makes the narrator a character in the scenario. Sam Waterston was given the role of Daisy Buchanan's poorer cousin, Nick Carraway. In "Line" Nick Guest serves in much the same way, with the exception that Nick Guest never realized he was an outsider, whereas Nick Carraway always did. Also much like Hemingway's reaction to F. Scott Fitzgerald's (author of "Gatsby") that "The rich are very different from us" - "Yes, they have more money", Guest finds out that human emotions, in this case recrimination, blame and betrayal, are just as much a part of the upper class as the lower. Guest and Gatsby both admire the upper class and at some point in each story, believe themselves equal to them, until each are made to pay for the sins of those they admire. In Gatsby's case, he is mistakenly shot by the wife of a garage mechanic who believes him to be Daisy's husband Tom, who is both wealthy and immoral. It is a classic story of social separatism, told with an extra layer of the start of the AIDS epidemic. It is a fine job of writing and acting all around. I was particularly impressed with the final slap in the face Nick gets from the housekeeper, who should have been more sympathetic to Nick, but who is also self-deluded in her thinking that she is part of the family, and not an outsider.