Filmmakers who adapt a novel are not beholden to the major themes of that novel. They’re free to take away what they want to see and leave the richer aspects of the material behind. Such is the case with Baz Luhrmann‘s adaptation of F. Scott Fitzgerald‘s The Great Gatsby. Where Fitzgerald saw the relationship between Jay Gatsby and Daisy Buchanan as a laughable excuse to escape into the past, Luhrmann sees a doomed romance because Baz Luhrmann likes stories about doomed romances*. And like his previous movies—Romeo + Juliet, Moulin Rouge!, and Australia—Luhrmann is too afraid of actual intimacy, and covers it up in glitter and other shiny objects while laboring under the delusion that it makes the story operatic. With The Great Gatsby, Luhrmann isn’t adapting Fitzgerald as much as he’s remaking Baz Luhrmann.