Search 75,351 tutors

Book v. Film Adaptation

Having just seen the newest "Gatsby", the question of 'do-I-read-the-book-before-I-see-the-film?' pops up again.

I have read "The Great Gatsby" several times, both on my own and academically; and I saw the Redford version (white, white, and more white). This film version is a work, though related by names, characters, and some plot, off to the land of color and music with no relationship with Fitzgerald.

Though its worst moments look like something out of a Pepsi commercial on crack cocaine, there are moments of sheer calm and, well, yes, beauty.

Would a read of the book improve your experience of the film? No. They are separate creatures. Would it give some context and understanding to the film? Probably. And, perhaps best of all, readers unfamiliar with the subtle style of Fitzgerald might read it with more thought.