KANSAS CITY, Mo ---
**THE GREAT GATSBY (PG-13)**
Oh my, oh my some movies are just more fun and interesting to watch than others. "The Great Gatsby" is that 1 in 10,000. It's an unbelievable cinematic experience -- jaw dropping beautiful, awe inspiring unique and wonderfully manic. It's like driving through Times Square at 110 miles per hour while blasting the banginest soundtrack ever at a Beats by Dre level 10 while sipping the finest champagne ever. Although we don't endorse drinking and driving that's what it's like watching "The Great Gatsby.
Baz Lurhman's extravagant, over-the-top, downright operatic interpretation of the classic novel comes tantalizing close to working...but isn't completely successful. The characters and important themes have been pummeled into submission by the filmmaker's excesses.
More dazzling than "Romeo and Juliet," more coherent than "Moulin Rouge" and way more romantic than "Australia." Director Baz Lurhman reimagines the 80 year-old novel like a cinematic mad man unafraid to mix together what ever elements he wants. This is daredevil cinema. And it doesn't miss the jump.
Leonardo DiCaprio is terrific and the movie has individual scenes that certainly hit the mark. But Lurhman's "Great Gatsby" is guilty of sucking out the heartbreak and soul of the story, replacing it with razzle-dazzle visuals and audio overkill. The 3-D actually works against it.
You can't take your eyes off. Your ear drums will have eargasims and oh yeah the cast led by the king, Leonardo DiCaprio, all fabulously play their parts with thespian cool and million dollar looks. Stunning, groundbreaking, visionary and stylistic. "The Great Gatsby" is a triumphant cinematic achievement. One of the best movies of the year. Baz Luhrman has out done himself. "The Great Gatsby" is a mesmerizing masterpiece.
While it has a certain gaudy entertainment value, this new rendition winds up being as shallow as Gatsby's courtyard water fountain.
RUSS: 3 Popcorn Bags
SHAWN: 5 Popcorn Bags
Basically this is "Meet the Parents" with black folk. More funnier than not. Basically a 90-minute sitcom that doesn't fail to entertain thanks to the likable cast that deliver a few laughs.
There's nothing particularly memorable about this goofy comedy, but it's heart is in the right place and Craig Robinson is amusing in his first leading role.
RUSS: 3 Popcorn Bags
SHAWN: 3 Popcorn Bags
ALSO OPENING THIS WEEK:
“Renoir” is a French drama set in 1915 dealing with the last four years of the celebrated impressionist painter’s life. “The Reluctant Fundamentalist” is a suspense drama from filmmaker Mira Nair based on the bestselling novel by Mohsin Hamid. Kate Hudson, Liev Schreiber and Keifer Sutherland star.
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