I’m fed up of Gatsby. I was fed up before Baz Luhrmann got involved, before the Carey Mulligan magazine covers – this 1920’s craze is a plague that has slowly been stultifying London life over the past five years. The current Gatsby infatuation is symptomatic of our culture’s obsession with looking backwards, of not tackling any of today’s issues in a constructive or original way – and ultimately about missing the point – Gatsby is a warning.
What people appear to miss is that Fitzgerald’s tale is a cautionary one, of excess, recklessness and tragedy – of the dark side of the American dream (and more broadly: corruption of youth, money and idealism). The characters are not to be emulated, there are no heroes – only accidents waiting to happen.