So We Beat On, Boats Against The Current, Borne INTO YOUR FACE

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"So We Beat On, Boats Against The Current, Borne INTO YOUR FACE"

I’m tickled by the news that Baz Luhrmann is preparing to shoot The Great Gatsby in 3-D. It made a great video game, so why not?

I liked Spike Jonze’s Where The Wild Things Are, but I also wished at the time that it hadn’t been the definitive take — even that they’d have let a couple of other writers and directors use the costumes and sets to film their own takes on the material.

The industrial strength of a film adaptation has a way of establishing itself as the canonical vision of a printed work. It’s healthy for a print work, especially a classic, to be allowed more than one crack. Imagine how great it would be if, some years down the line a Watchmen adaptation came out that was as different from Zach Snyder’s take as Christopher Nolan’s Dark Knight was from Danny Elfman’s?

Given the giddy pasticheworks of Luhrmann’s Romeo + Juliet and Moulin Rouge, and given the prima facie senselessness of telling a muted work like Gatsby in 3-D, I can’t help but be optimistic about this. Maybe, perversely, it will even have a touch of Hemingway’s apocryphal rebuttal in it.

x-posted at Joshua Malbin.

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