The narrative situation established
in the film differs greatly from that in the novel where Nick
Carraway is the first person narrator. It is through his eyes
that the characters are presented. One of his main roles is
to give a clear picture of their class position. It is through
his comments that the reader gets a deeper knowledge of their
situation. An example of this is his observation that despite
Gatsby's appearance and stories of his background there was
something odd about him. He didn't quite fit with the story
The film, however, uses the camera
eye to present the characters, with occasional comments from
Nick. In this way appearance and money are the main indicators
of class. As noted earlier this is a reflection of 1970s American
society where these were the signs of class.
Nick's social position in both
the film and book is ambiguous and he himself is uneasy as
to his position. He is well educated and is related to those
of the upper class, Daisy, however he has a lowly payed job
and lives simply on the 'less-fashionable side of the island'
(as observed by him in the opening of the film). He is present
at social gatherings of all classes - Daisy's house, Gatsby's
parties, Tom and Myrtle's parties.