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

Compare and Contrast the two Film Versions of Act 3 Scene 1 in Romeo and Juliet and Consider How they Reflect 17th and 20th Century Contexts

Extracts from this document...


Compare and Contrast the two Film Versions of Act 3 Scene 1 in Romeo and Juliet and Consider How they Reflect 17th and 20th Century Contexts 3.1 is a scene in which Mercutio, Romeo's friend and the main source of humour in the play, is murdered by Tybalt, a Capulet. In anger and vengeance for his dear friend he seeks revenge and consequently kills Tybalt. Baz Luhrmann and Zeffirelli have adapted this play and portrayed it in contrasting 20th century and 17th century contexts. Both have their similarities and differences but effectively illustrate a similar story which is adapted to suit their era. Both films provide different perspectives of the text due to their diverse settings; Luhrmann's is based in modern day America whereas Zeffirelli's is based in traditional Italy. In this essay I will analyse the scene in more detail and compare and contrast the two film versions of Act 3 scene to see how they reflect 17th and 20th century contexts. ...read more.


However, Zeffirelli does use the idea of costume to show some ideas in play. For example in this fight scene both Tybalt and Romeo are wearing hats. Tybalt wears a red hat with slits signifying the devil or maybe even an ominous prefiguration of what was to come, Romeo wears a yellow hat showing a sign of peace. "Mercutio, thou consortest with Romeo", Tybalt insults Mercutio and from this point onwards the two adaptations take different advances. In Luhrmann's version Mercutio is offended by this remark and advances on Tybalt, incidentally starting the fight himself. However, in Zeffirelli's version he is quick-witted, realises what Tybalt was trying to say and makes a double meaning out of it, comparing themselves to minstrels who were fooling around. This reflects 17th and 20th century contexts because it shows people are more sensitive to homosexuals in the 20th century but it was considered normal to be close male friends in the 17th century. ...read more.


shouts Mercutio either on the stage or on top of the steps, just before his death. This is a pivotal point in the play in which the tragedy is made inevitable and smashes all hope of a happy ending. Romeo is faced with a dilemma of whether to kill Tybalt or not. Eventually he does, and delivers another fierce fight to the audience's enjoyment, but this time it was a fight to the death. Overall, it is clear that in both versions the story has been adapted and at some points changed to represent the 2 different contexts and also to appeal to the general audience and public at the time of release. Both films share ideas like the theme of water but are also strikingly different at times like in the idea of costume often to relate to their contexts'. It is apparent that Lurhmann has used ideas from Zeffirelli's version and tailored them to fit into a 20th century context. Luhrmann's adaptation of Act 3 Scene 1 seems to be more serious and takes a sharper tone whereas Zeffirelli's is lengthier and more comical giving the audience something to enjoy rather than to mourn over. ...read more.

The above preview is unformatted text

This student written piece of work is one of many that can be found in our GCSE Romeo and 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 GCSE Romeo and Juliet essays

  1. Compare and contrast the two 'Romeo and Juliet' films,by Franco Zeffirelli and Baz Luhrmann. ...

    Luhrmann production we have developed a great impression of the characters, their attitudes and roles. Baz Luhrmann uses the costumes as a device much more than Franco Zeffirelli does in his interpretation of the Shakespeare play. When the Prince enters in both productions of 'Romeo and Juliet' we can sense his authority and high status.

  2. Comparing two versions of Romeo & Juliet (Zefferelli and Baz Luhram).

    At first, Romeo thinks Balthasar is going to tell him good news but is heartbroken when he finds out that his lover is dead. They then rush to back to Verona, passing the Friars messenger on the way in both versions.

  1. Compare and contrast two film adaptations for act 1 scene 5 of "Romeo and ...

    This is possibly there to show the primal element of this scene this also enhances the hedonism found in the scene. This also adds the impurity of Romeo and Juliet's meeting. The two first meet when Romeo has dipped his face in water to calm his drug induced behaviour.

  2. How effectively do Baz Luhrmann and Franco Zeffirelli interpret Act I Scene VI when ...

    the way Romeo and Juliet find out about each other seems more realistic because the nurse does not help so much so she doesn't work it out. In the Franco Zeffirelli version the nurse is asked by both but does not seem to work out that they are in love.

  1. Romeo and Juliet - comparing film versions.

    at he beginning of this meeting that Romeo is in love with her at first but Juliet shows no compassion until he kisses her. He immediately falls in love and when given the chance to talk to her in private they kiss.

  2. Choose two scenes from "Romeo and Juliet" and comment on how Zeffirelli and Luhrmann ...

    Weather and music go together in the scene, as the weather changes the music does with it. For example, as Romeo falls to the floor thunder rolls and there is a rising musical sequence, still in the minor key, as the tension greatens.

  1. An examination of the way two 20th Centuary Film Directors have interpreted Shakespeare's Romeo ...

    They start a fight that turns into a civil brawl that grows to involve the whole town. The Prince arrives, declares that if there is another fight the participants will be executed. "If you ever disturb our streets again, your lives shall pay the forfeit of the peace" The Directors

  2. What is important to Shakespeare in his construction of selected scenes from 'Romeo and ...

    Sampson here is saying that he is going to rape the Montague maids. Rape at the present time is physically disgusting and I believe it was still the same in the days of Shakespeare so I personally cannot see why the people of the day would laugh at this scene,

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