Carrie Mulligan

The Great Gatsby

Five years since Baz Luhrmann‘s first certifiable flop, Australia, the flamboyant director returns for unarguably his most ambitious and anticipated effort yet, a pulse-pounding take on F. Scott Fitzgerald’s esteemed novel, The Great Gatsby (most famously adapted previously with Robert Redford in the starring role). Though this attempt boasts all of the coveted Luhrmann hallmarks, it misses the mark precisely because it indulges those very flourishes in the most sickly, overblown fashion possible. When we first meet Nick Carraway (Tobey Maguire), he’s a crestfallen alcoholic, clearly shaken by events he’s experienced. To recount his story, Carraway takes us back to his first encounters with enigmatic neighbor Jay Gatsby (Leonardo DiCaprio), who throws luxurious parties while mystique continues to grow surrounding both his identity and his sizable wealth. Meanwhile, Carraway’s decision to re-introduce Gatsby to a former flame, Daisy (Carey Mulligan) foreshadows dangerous consequences for all involved.

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Director Nicolas Winding Refn has little interest in repeating himself on the big screen. He first made a splash with his gritty and violent Pusher trilogy before surprising audiences and critics alike with the creative and charismatic Bronson. His last film, Valhalla Rising, saw him move into a more contemplative and zen-like mood focused on visuals and atmosphere instead of plot. Which brings us to his latest film… which also appears to be his most accessible. Drive is about a movie stunt driver (Ryan Gosling) who moonlights as a getaway driver whenever the mood strikes him, but when he gets involved with a woman (Carrie Mulligan) and her son his precise and controlled life takes a deadly turn. He’s forced outside of his comfort zone and has to put his skills to the test to save not only himself but the hottie and the kid as well. The film also boasts a pretty stellar supporting cast list including Albert Brooks, Bryan Cranston, Ron Perlman, and Christina Hendricks. Check out the fantastically thrilling and beautifully scored trailer courtesy of IGN below.

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published: 12.23.2014
B+
published: 12.22.2014
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published: 12.19.2014
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