Over the weekend we had a chance to catch the nostalgic novelty read in countless high school classrooms around the country, glamorized in pop culture, and redone more times than we can count. Baz Luhmann's twenty-first adaptation of the Great Gatsby is filled with stunning scenes of New York City and the swirling waters of the Ocean that separates Daisy and Gatsby throughout the movie, thanks to the help of CGI and VFX technology. The vivid graphics and reliance on this non-film based medium has irked some, who claim that the "CGI creates a sense of unrelaity," or "looked as if the actors were in an entirely fake environment," according to another.
In all these critiques and reviews you get a sense that viewers feel over-stimulated and even a little dupped by something generated by a computer. The debate about CGI and VFX continues to go on among film makers and film watchers, and whether the technology used 'tricks' audiences or cheapens the cinematography. Regardless of whether you think that these computer generated elements are needed or warranted, these effects lend an infinite amount of creative control to film-makers and artists by giving them the tools to adjust lighting, texture, modeling and everything in between to create the worlds that fit into their vision for the film.
Needless to say, we think Baz did a swell job. Trying to film a scene is tough. Trying to film a scene that took place almost a century ago, is, well, quite the challenge. While there are no shortage of talented sculptors and set designers out there, using CGI and VFX to produce the world of 1920's New York City brought a vivid imagination and energy to the final production.
And after all, sometimes there is just no choice but to use CGI to create the final product.
Not sure about your kids, but all the babies we know can't do this in real life.....