It's an expressionist work, a story reinvented to the point of total self-invention, polished to a handsome sheen and possessing no class or taste beyond the kind you can buy. And those are the reasons to love it.
This is a film which takes classic source material and imbues it on screen with a sense of wonder commensurate to its prior form, perhaps offering an even more visceral impression of the possibilities inherent to this beautiful, tragic world.
With the sound off, Baz Luhrmann’s The Great Gatsby surely looks as radiant and extraordinary as some of the most dazzling movies ever committed to celluloid, but with the sound up and the experience on full volume, the movie is mostly a cacophony of style, excess and noise that makes you want to turn it all down a notch...or three...
Luhrmann's vulgarity is designed to win over the young audience, and it suggests that he's less a filmmaker than a music-video director with endless resources and a stunning absence of taste. [13 May 2013, p.78]