Moulin Rouge vs The Great Gatsby
Apart from having the same director, Baz Luhrmann, Moulin Rouge and The Great Gatsby have an astounding amount of similarities. They are both passionate love stories with similar characters in coinciding roles. Although the two movies are set in the early 1900s and 1920s, they use modern music to captivate the audience’s interest. Baz Luhrmann has a knack for making colorful romantic thrillers, and it certainly shows in Moulin Rouge and The Great Gatsby. In the two movies there are three basic characters in the love triangle.
Christian and Jay Gatsby would be the two dapper, yet penniless men that are desperate for the love of their soul mates. These soul mates would be Satine and Daisy. They are both very dramatic, beautiful free spirits who have everything handed to them due to their tremendous beauty. The third character in this love triangle is the antagonist, trying to steal away the girl from her true love. In Moulin Rouge, this was the Duke who could offer Satine a career as a real actress, and eventually gets so jealous of Christian that he attempts to have him killed.
In The Great Gatsby, this character is Tom Buchanan. He is a wealthy ex-polo star who is married to Daisy and assists in setting up the murder of Jay Gatsby. Both movies contain very similar plot structures in different settings. Baz Luhrmann is known for his colorful scenes, and there are multiple of them in these two movies. In Moulin Rouge, these scenes are evident at the dances in the Moulin Rouge theatre. The costumes of the women are very extravagant and colorful, adding to the attractive scenes. In The Great Gatsby, the colorful scenes take place at Gatsby’s parties.
His parties are renowned throughout the area of New York, and people of all shapes, sizes, and colors. Another significant part of the movies is the use of diamonds. In Moulin Rouge, Satine’s stage name is “The Sparkling Diamond,” and Luhrmann makes her shine like one too. In The Great Gatsby, this is evident at one of Gatsby’s largest parties, when Daisy is wearing a dress made of diamonds and a diamond head piece. Buz Luhrmann’s intention in making movies is to provide and entertaining, extravagantly beautiful film, and he succeded in the making of these two films.
Another similar aspect of these two movies is the use of modern music to better capture the attention of younger audiences. Since Moulin Rouge was a musical, Luhrmann decided to intertwine recent hits for the singing scenes. Although the film takes place in 1899, He included songs from music legends such as Elton John, Madonna, and The Beatles. In The Great Gatsby, Luhrmann chose to allow a music entrepreneur, Jay-Z, to take control of the music to be played. Jay-Z used self-produced music, and music of modern super stars that he knew the crowd would fall in love with.
He inputted a techno feeling to the music at the parties, because he was able to understand that if he used the jazz music prevalent in the 1920s, the audience would have no way of relating. He may not know it, but Buzz Luhrmann has a knack for making movies with star-crossed lovers and extremely colorful sequences, that just happen to be very successful. Moulin Rouge and The Great Gatsby are perfect examples of Luhrmann’s gift. They exhibit the similar qualities in characters, scenes, and music. It will not be a surprise if Buzz Luhrmann comes out with another movie in the future with vast similarities to Moulin Rouge and The Great Gatsby.