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Compare the ways in which William Shakespeare and Baz Luhrman make the scene interesting and tense for the audience.

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Introduction

Compare the ways in which William Shakespeare and Baz Luhrman make the scene interesting and tense for the audience "Romeo and Juliet" is a play written by William Shakespeare in 1594 or 1595. It was written to be performed in front of Elizabethan audiences. It was most notably performed in front of audiences at the Globe Theatre in London. Baz Luhrman's adaptation of "Romeo and Juliet" was created in 1996 so that more people could enjoy William Shakespeare's work, and to translate his work into a modern world setting. A problem that faced Luhrman was would a modern audience appreciate Shakespeare's stories? This is why he set it in a modern setting. I will be writing to compare the differences and even similarities in Act 1 scene 5 of the Shakespeare Baz Lurhman versions of "Romeo and Juliet". In the beginning of Act 1 Scene 5 the servants are preparing for the party in the kitchen. They are in a buoyant mood and looking forward to the party. Everything in the scene is at a "brisk" pace, with people rushing to get ready for the party. You get the feeling of it all being done quickly because the first servant seems to be giving orders. This is shown when the first servant says, "Away with the joint stools, remove the court cupboard." This shows the servants are rushing to get ready giving commands to each other. "We cannot be here and there too" This is further evidence that they are hurried because they need to be in two places at once. The setting of the opening of the scene is at the Capulet's mansion and in particular in the kitchen. The scene then progresses to Capulet welcoming all the guests. Capulet is in a very jovial mood and is a very good host. He then proceeds to tell the women to dance on the dance floor. ...read more.

Middle

Luhrman uses the effects of cameras techniques, music and change of pace to introduce Romeo and Juliet together. Just before Romeo sees Juliet the whole atmosphere changes from being frantic and chaotic to calm and relaxing. Romeo's first sight of Juliet comes after him looking at some tropical fish in a tank. Without him knowing Juliet is doing the same. When they make eye contact, it makes Juliet jump. The tropical fish some of which are bright blue make both Romeo and Juliet's face stand out more. The director makes the audience sense it is love at first sight with the Romantic music and the two characters saying nothing because they are in love. Baz Luhrman uses effective music in this interaction of the characters because in the lyrics of the song the words "I'm kissing you" is an action of love. The costumes of Romeo and Juliet are very symbolic because Romeo as dressed as a knight, "the knight in Shining armour", and Juliet is dressed as an angel, which makes her seem pure and virginal. Juliet's behaviour in their first interaction is very shy and child like. This gives us the impression that she is pure. In the original it comes across to the reader that it is Romeo just looking at Juliet whereas in the film they both are looking at each other and both admiring their beauty. Whereas in Shakespeare version where he uses poetry and words to describe Juliet's beauty in the film they use a combination of costumes, music, camera angles and lighting effects to portray her beauty. It is interesting that even though Shakespeare uses words and Luhrman uses filming techniques they both portray the beauty of Juliet. When Tybalt sees Romeo he wants to get him out straight away, and he even wants to kill him. This is an example of the pure hatred between the Capulets and the Montagues. ...read more.

Conclusion

The movement of the actors seems to be choreographed with them starting the speech on other sides of the pillar and how they waited for the lift. It was all choreographed in that particular way to create tension. Things were changed from the original script because from the original script you sense that they stayed in one place throughout the whole conversation and that they kept eye contact as well. However, in the film the shared sonnet was carried out in different places in the mansion and that they didn't retain eye contact through it either. In conclusion, I think the director of the film Baz Luhrman changed the order of some events so that it was more effective in the setting of this frantic party. I think that Tybalt's rhyming couplet was changed to be at the end and not midway through because at the end when Romeo has realised that Juliet is a Capulet the mood is a very tragic one. Tybalt's speech is a very haunting one at the end. It creates tension and makes the viewers heart pumps a little bit faster. I think Mercutio featured more prominently in the film because he is likeable character on screen. He adds humour to the film, and everyone likes him. In the play I most liked when Romeo first saw Juliet because the reader really understood that Romeo was really in love with her. I think you knew he actually loved her and not something like he had with Rosalind because he was delivering his speech so no one but himself could hear. If it was performed in front of Juliet you would feel he his trying to impress her and not being genuine. I think that the film successfully captured the tension of this meeting of Romeo and Juliet. I think it was cleverly edited to create the tension in the best way for on screen enjoyment. The effects of camera angles, lighting, costumes and music portrayed their meeting in a great way with added tension. Francis Christopher 10W ...read more.

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