• Join over 1.2 million students every month
  • Accelerate your learning by 29%
  • Unlimited access from just £6.99 per month

Analyse and comment on the success of the title sequence of Baz Luhrmann's 1997 film adaptation of 'Romeo & Juliet'.

Extracts from this document...


Analyse and comment on the success of the title sequence of Baz Luhrmann's 1997 film adaptation of 'Romeo & Juliet' The 1997 adaptation of Shakespeare's Romeo and Juliet by Baz Luhrmann was attempting to reach out to a younger audience by modernising the old play with new ideas, even though the old text was kept. Set in modern times with modern things that a young audience could relate to, Luhrmann successfully hauled Shakespeare's text from 16th century Verona, Italy to late 20th century Miami, USA. The purpose of this essay is to review, analyse and comment on the use of Luhrmann's background to help him in making the movie, the success of the film but most importantly the cinematic success of the title scene. The location was specifically chosen to represent modern times. America was the most modern country available. Although Luhrmann wanted to shoot the film in Miami, it was seen by the mayor of Miami as unrealistic to put the city on hold while they shot the movie; Mexico's capital city, Mexico City was used instead. ...read more.


Throughout the movie we are shown images of power. These images are more abundant in the opening title scene. Images of guns, violence and police are shown to create an atmosphere of chaos and anarchy. The guns are used, again to create a modernised version of the old play. The guns represent the swords used by the people in the sixteenth century, and they are referred to as swords by the actors, 'put up thy swords.' Religion is one of the main themes in the play, and Luhrmann uses many powerful images to show this in the opening title scene. Two statues of Jesus are filmed round about either side of the city. The statues are opposite each other with their faces facing inwards, as if looking over the people of 'Verona' and keeping guard. Also the Christian crucifix is used to replace some of the Ts in the scripture which occasionally flash between the montage of images of police, violent riots and arrests; the scripture is repeating the important parts of the sonnet that opens the play. ...read more.


In conclusion, considering all the areas of the title scene, Baz Luhrmann has successfully given birth to a fantastic opening to Romeo and Juliet. The title scene underlines key aspects of the sonnet which opens the play, to help the people in the audience who don't understand Shakespeare and even the ones who do. He introduces the principle characters, again to stop the audience from getting confused. The use of exciting images, such as the gun and the images of police and violence makes certain people in the audience stay and not walk out because they may believe it to be boring; many teenagers would believe Shakespeare to be boring. The opening scene had a very strong effect on me personally. It really made me want to see the movie again, even though I had already seen it about three times. The scene gripped me and not many title scenes have done that to me. Baz Luhrmann's version of Romeo and Juliet was a complete success. Alex Kirshbaum ...read more.

The above preview is unformatted text

This student written piece of work is one of many that can be found in our AS and A Level Romeo & Juliet section.

Found what you're looking for?

  • Start learning 29% faster today
  • 150,000+ documents available
  • Just £6.99 a month

Not the one? Search for your essay title...
  • Join over 1.2 million students every month
  • Accelerate your learning by 29%
  • Unlimited access from just £6.99 per month

See related essaysSee related essays

Related AS and A Level Romeo & Juliet essays

  1. How did Shakespeare create tension in act 1 scene 5 of Romeo and Juliet

    audience can see they are made for each other by how they talk and how they carry on the conversation in poetry "ROMEO: Have not saints lips, and holy palmers too? JULIET: Ay, pilgrim, lips that they must use in prayer.

  2. Comment on how Baz Luhrmann uses video and audio techniques to communicate themes and ...

    Here with gun drawn, a close up of Benvolio's apprehensive face fills the screen and silence falls. Here only the sound of an old creaky sign is heard blowing in the wind, un-nerving Benvolio further and continuing the western theme.

  1. Compare and contrast the opening sequence of the Luhrman and Zeffirelli film versions of ...

    I think Luhrman emphasized the chorus in this particular way to make the audience realise that the film will end depressingly. The media's presentation of the feud illustrates the impact of the "ancient grudge" on the city while importing the play's introductory content in a format familiar to a modern audience.

  2. Comparison of Franco Zefferelli's Romeo and Juliet to The adaptation by Baz Luhrmann

    The Montague's remove their waste coats to reveal a religious shirt of Christ and a gun. This is a paradox, as religion and a fear not to use guns are not normally placed together. The guns have been fitted with the old fashioned end of a sword, this shows whom

  1. Explore how Baz Luhrmann, the director of "Romeo and Juliet", has produced an exciting ...

    Then the Montague's yellow car drives into the petrol station, "Phoenix Gas" the camera moves down and has a close up of the registration plate, which reads, "MON 005" showing that the boys have an identity as the Montague's, something they are very proud of and want to display.

  2. Critically discuss the presentation of the opening of Baz Lurhmann film adaptation of ' ...

    In contrast to this Lurhmann also uses nondiegetic sound. One example of this effective sound is used as Capulate slowly steps out his car and the screen is focussed on his heel. This sound unlike diegetic sound is not as recognisable as it is part of the mystery background music.

  1. How does Baz Luhrmann's film adaptation of

    However, with this grudge there is blood shed and constant fights, some of which draw in innocent civilians. In the movie this section of the prologue is shot from a fast-moving helicopter. There is an extreme long shot and an aerial view of Verona, which introduces us to the town.

  2. Analysing film trailers.

    The lighting is mainly natural light but occasionally there is a Key Light and a Fill Light just too really emphasise what the director wants you to be looking at. There is an "ABABA" structure in the second section because there is an image of Romeo and Juliet kissing then

  • Over 160,000 pieces
    of student written work
  • Annotated by
    experienced teachers
  • Ideas and feedback to
    improve your own work