Paramount’s third pass at The Great Gatsby is by far the most concerted attempt to probe the peculiar ethos of the Beautiful People of the 1920s. The fascinating physical beauty of the $6 million-plus film complements the utter shallowness of most principal characters from the F. Scott Fitzgerald novel.
Robert Redford is excellent in the title role, the mysterious gentleman of humble origins and bootlegging connections; Mia Farrow is his long-lost love, married unhappily but inextricably to brutish Bruce Dern, who has a side affair going with restive working class wife Karen Black.
The Francis Coppola script and Jack Clayton’s direction paint a savagely genteel portrait of an upper class generation that deserved in spades what it got circa 1929 and after.
1974: Best Adapted Scoring, Costume Design