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Act 3 Scene 5 of Shakespeare's Romeo and Juliet portrays family conflict

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Introduction

Act 3 Scene 5 of Shakespeare's Romeo and Juliet portrays family conflict. Discuss with reference to two film adaptations. Act 3 scene 5 focuses on the conflict between Juliet and Capulet that has arisen from Juliet's forthcoming and unwelcome marriage to Paris. I will be looking at the film version from 1967 and a modern version from 1997. Social, historical and dramatic devices feature heavily in both film adaptations of this renowned Shakespearian play. They are used to create tension and build a more exciting storyline. In the 1967 film a more traditionalist view is taken on the conflict in act 3 scene 5. Lady Capulet informs Capulet of Juliet's unwilling approach to marriage. Capulet is furious and marches upstairs to confront his daughter. This scene indicates its age as little violence is used and the characters wear dark coloured clothes which are accompanied by extravagant jewellery and other showy accessories such as imposing hats festooned with feathers, beads and jewels. Despite the lack of violence Capulet and Juliet clearly exemplify their anger with lots of shouting and emotion. ...read more.

Middle

From this we gather that Lady Capulet could be scared of her husband. She agreed with him even though she probably saw the argument from Juliet's point of view. This suggests that she has no backbone as she doesn't stand up for what she thinks is right. In the modern version of Romeo and Juliet, however, Lady Capulet shows more feelings for her daughter which is more in keeping with today's society. Capulet lunges towards Juliet but Lady Capulet tries to drag Juliet away from her evil father although she is promptly rewarded with a slap around the face for her troubles. Threats are used effectively to create tension in this play. The quote 'Or I will drag thee on a hurdle thither' shows the severity of these threats. A hurdle is a wooden rack used for dragging traitors to the place of execution. Another example of a vicious quote is 'I tell thee what, get thee to church o' Thursday, or never after look me in the face.' ...read more.

Conclusion

She tells Capulet that he is to blame. 'You are to blame, my lord, to rate her so'. She feels that Juliet should not be scolded as most people in her situation would react in the same way. Capulet then tells the nurse 'Smatter with your gossips, go'. This means go and chatter to your old women. The nurse then replies 'I speak no treason'. She is defiant and shows no fear of Capulet despite his aggression. This is probably one reason that Capulet does not hit the nurse as he knows she isn't scared of him. I think that this scene is very well thought out and it captivates the audience. Out of both versions I preferred the older one because although the costumes were older and the actors spoke in old English accents everything fitted in well with the script and was as I imagined it would be. The modern version was too 'Americanized' and the language used did not fit in with the settings, clothing or accents. I also thought that this version should have been more historically set instead of everything being modern because then it would have been easier to relate to the play. ...read more.

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