Analysis of The Great Gatsby

By Alexandria Wieda

The Book Scene of Nick Carraway's fIrst encounter with Gatsby

When Nick Carraway and Jay Gatsby meet, they are at one of Gatsby's many parties that he hosts every week. Nick gets into a conversation with another man who asks him if Nick would like to go up in his hydroplane the next day, "It was on the tip of my tongue to ask his name when Jordan looked around and smiled. 'Having a gay time now?' she inquired. 'Much better.' I turned again to my new acquaintance. 'This is an unusual party for me. I haven’t even seen the host. I live over there——' I waved my hand at the invisible hedge in the distance, 'and this man Gatsby sent over his chauffeur with an invitation.' For a moment he looked at me as if he failed to understand. 'I’m Gatsby,' he said suddenly." (page 52) In the book Gatsby reveals himself to Nick in a calm manner without any extravagant things happening, simply just as a matter of fact sort of way, unlike in the movie.

The movie scene of Nick carraway's first encounter with gatsby

When Nick Carraway and Jay Gatsby meet, they are at one of Gatsby's many parties that he hosts every week. When he is following after Jordan, he gets stopped by a stranger and they begin to talk about the war, but then Nick states, "Oh, the whole thing's incredible, I live just next door... He sent me an actual invitation, seems I'm the only one, I still haven't meet Gatsby. No one's met him, they say he's third cousin to the Kaiser and second cousin to the devil." and the stranger, also to be Gatsby, quickly replies, "I'm afraid I haven't been a very good host, old sport, you see, I'm Gatsby." (pages 33-34 of script) After Gatsby states these words, the music reaches its climax and fireworks explode behind him showing off a sort of glory. This differs from the book in many ways. First of all, in the book, Jordan was present for the reveal of Gatsby. However, in the movie a little after Gatsby reveals himself, she finds Nick again and seems to have already met Gatsby earlier at the party. Second, Gatsby's reveal was very low key and calmer, but in the movie it is very extravagant and exaggerated.

Scene of Gatsby, Nick, and Wolfsheim at lunch

Gatsby, Nick, and Wolfsheim meet and have lunch at a speakeasy. The audience is told that Gatsby and Wolfsheim are friends. In the movie, in my opinion, it seemed that Wolfsheim is jealous of Gatsby because every time Wolfsheim looks at Gatsby he has a scowl on his face. When reading the book, I always thought of Wolfsheim as the happy and less serious type of person; although in the movie he is serious and stern.

Scene of the Reunion over tea

When Gatsby is waiting for Daisy to show at Nick's house for some tea, he is scowling because he is nervous? This did not look right to me, because I always imagined him to have a worried or confused expression to show his concern for whether it was a very good idea to do this or whether she will even show up. I have the understanding of what Gatsby is feeling which he is concerned and worried in the book. I am unsure though of what Gatsby is feeling or what Leonardo DiCaprio is trying to portray the feelings of Gatsby in this moment. Is it anger at himself that this was a bad idea or anger that she might not show up?

Scene at the Plaza

While at the Plaza, Gatsby and Tom break out into a banter between each other of Tom trying to get to the truth of Gatsby. Although in the movie Tom crosses some sort of line and Gatsby snaps and goes to punch Tom, but he stops himself and regains his composure. This doesn't happen in the book, Gatsby never loses his composure at the Plaza. It did, however, give Gatsby's character a little edge, but it is not how he acts so for a moment it is as if the actor breaks character from the book's Gatsby.