In fact, it would be surprising if there were one real-life surface in the entire movie; and unless another “Hobbit” is released this year, Gatsby would seem a shoo-in as a nominee for Best Animated Picture.But the soullessness of the movie is not a result of those surfaces but of a profound lack of emotional depth, a decision on the part of Luhrmann to stimulate his audience rather than make them feel, based in a lack of faith in their sympathy or understanding.
“There are no second acts in American lives,” is one of Fitzgerald’s more famous and often quoted observations.
Nevertheless, in chapter Two, Beuka shows how the second act had come posthumously with the so-called “Fitzgerald revival” of the forties and the fifties and a renewed critical interest of (1945) were two posthumous volumes that sparked fresh public interest in Fitzgerald.
If “The Great Gatsby” is any indication, there are no second acts in the life of Baz Luhrmann.
I have not seen the new “Gatsby” film but have been intrigued by all the hoopla bringing new interest in Fitzgerald’s book. Scott Fitzgerald is often quoted via a line that has always seemed to make very little sense: ‘There are no second acts in American lives.’" The “quote” is from the essay, “My Lost City,” where Fitzgerald actually says, “I once thought that there were no second acts in American lives, but there was certainly to be a second act to New York's boom days.” In that essay, Fitzgerald talks about how the city of New York had changed as well as how individual lives change from one stage to the next. He in fact describes what second acts can look like.
He strips the viewers, too, for that matter, because they are being told throughout how deeply they should be feeling toward the story and its characters, while being provided no emotional basis to feel any such thing.
It has been argued by some scholars that when Fitzgerald talked about second acts, he was not talking about second lives.
Though I enjoyed reading John Anderson’s review, he begins and ends with the same mistake that many make who quote F. Fitzgerald is writing after the economic crash of 1929 lamenting a time that is gone, but acknowledging that the city moves on.
Anderson’s review is in itself a substantial commentary, but he may have begun it and ended it differently if he had read Fitzgerald first.
but also a complete and thorough survey of the impact of the novel into the world of popular culture.
This parallel attempt throws light on the changing modes of interpretation that have affected our understanding of the novel.