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A Comparison of Lehrman's and Zeffireli's Film versions of Romeo and Juliet.

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A Comparison of Lehrman's and Zeffireli's Film versions of Romeo and Juliet My aim of this essay is to compare the two versions of Romeo and Juliet that are directed by Baz Lehrman and Franco Zeffirelli. Lehrman set his in modern times with modern clothing and buildings. He still uses early modern English but with some lines changed, so the modern audience can understand the story a little easier. It was created in 1996. It is given a Miami beach setting with loud music and super-artsy sets, reviewers said "Natural born killers meet Stratford-Upon-Avon, a kind of Shakespeare MTV". This version definitely helped younger people with the understanding of the play, and to appreciate the works of Shakespeare, simply because Lehrman could keep to the main basis of the story, yet modernise it to suit these recent times, and keep the audience interested throughout the whole of the film. It was certified as a twelve. Zeffireli's version is set in Elizabethan times in Italy. At the time that this film was created it was the first version of Romeo and Juliet where the two main characters were played by actual teenagers (seventeen and fifteen). He created the latest action, humour and romantic film version of Romeo and Juliet yet. ...read more.


As she is talking the camera very slowly zooms into the screen. Then just as she reads the last line the camera zooms in very quickly into the blue background on the T.V screen. Then very loud opera music is played. This gives you a sense of danger maybe violence, the camera zooms down a long road through the town, I think this might have been influenced by the last line "Is now the two hours' traffic of our stage" as the word "traffic" stands out. Then there are flashes of the scenes throughout the movie mainly of violence. The chorus is repeated this time by a male voice. There are pictures of newspaper articles and main words like "Two star crossed lovers take their life" this is to point out main themes of the story. There is also displays of the white dove and sacred heart labelling Catholicism. The party scene in Zeffireli's in some ways is different but also similar to that in Lehrman's, like when the pair talk to each other there is a solo being sung in the background or on-stage both romantic songs to set the scene for when the pair fall in love. ...read more.


When it finishes a soloist comes on stage and every one creates a circle round him, Romeo and Juliet try to find each other and when they do Romeo grabs her hand and talks to her. Later they kiss and the camera pauses on them whilst there is no singing in the music this makes it fairly romantic but I think it would have been a bit better if the camera looked up and down them to show they are really falling in-love. When the nurse takes Juliet away she asks the nurse to find out who Romeo is. Also Romeo finds that Juliet is a Capulet here, as well as Juliet finding out that he is a Montague. Both directors chose to hold the camera on the couples first kiss. I think they chose this because it really creates a romantic atmosphere this helps people to see the passion between each other. Also they chose to get Romeo to grab Juliet's hand from behind a column, this makes him appear like the no fear type, the type who are not scared to jump into things like here he instantly tries to impress her with "holy palmers kiss...". This keeps up Romeos personality on what he does for love, like at the end killing himself for Juliet. ...read more.

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