Follows the silent 1926 version of F. Scott Fitzgerald's Jazz Era novel. Mysterious Jay Gatsby (Ladd) is a wealthy gangster and bootlegger who tries to buy his way into fast-living New York society. He befriends well-bred but penniless Nick Carraway (Carey), who serves as Gatsby's one true friend and eyewitness to the unfolding events. Gatsby rekindles his love for decorative Daisy (Field), who married into money and society and merely toys with leaving it all behind for Gatsby. Finally, the shallowness and selfishness all about prove to be Gatsby's undoing.