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Discuss and compare the interpretations of the Capulet ball scene in Franco Zefferlli's film and Baz Luhrmans version of Romeo and Juliet.

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Introduction

English GCSE Coursework- Media Discuss and compare the interpretations of the Capulet ball scene in Franco Zefferlli's film and Baz Luhrmans version of Romeo and Juliet. Romeo & Juliet is one of the world's most beloved romances written by William Shakespeare that have been later adapted into films. Two of these films were made nearly three decades apart and have very different styles. The films were directed by Franco Zeffirelli who directed the 1968 version of Romeo and Juliet and Buz Luhrman directed the modern version which was released in 1996. The Italian director Franco Zeffirelli is both a stage-director and designer and he has served in equal measure in the arts of theatre, opera and cinema. Zeffirelli treats various historical styles and has an excessive interest in Shakespeare and the Renaissance period. In addition to Romeo and Juliet he has directed "Tea with Mussolini"," Hamlet" and "The Taming of the Shrew". Australian director, Baz Luhrmann has had a varied career as an actor, writer, producer, songwriter, and director of theater, television, opera and films. ...read more.

Middle

Similarly Baz Luhrman has chosen a young and appealing cast however the actors that were chosen were "Hollywood stars" at the time. This again reflects on how the modern film was premeditated for a different type of audience. An audience which had not necessarily had any idea of Shakespeare. As I have mentioned before both films have used different modes and techniques in the features of sound, setting, costume and make up, colour and position of characters to illustrate to the audience how they had interpreted Shakespeare's work. In the Franco Zeffireli version the opening shot of a ball scene immediately gives you a feeling of the renaissance period by the setting of an old castle. In addition to the setting you can also notice the Renaissance period by the costumes the characters are wearing. The characters in the ballroom are widely spread out until Romeo and Juliet meet. When the other characters move closer together, it gives Romeo and Juliet a chance to be unaccompanied by anybody. The sound is mainly diajetic as you can clearly see it is a party and there is a singer singing which you can see physically. ...read more.

Conclusion

Eventually Romeo and Juliet eye each other for the first time. Baz Luhrman has illustrated this in a new approach by using a fish tank to hinder Romeo and Juliet from speaking to each other. Where costumes are concerned as it is a costume party you see everybody in fancy and eccentric costumes. Juliet wears a white dress and is dressed up as an angel I think this signifies a sense of innocence towards her. These two scenes have similarities as the position of characters and the camera work are similar. Both films are brightly lit and use the exactly same type of Shakespearean language . Alternatively, Zefferelli's version was set in the enaissance while Luhrmans version is set in Verona Beach in a modern date. Above all I feel the Baz Luhrman film is more enjoyable because he has shown us something very different and it is something anyone can relate to and will be able to comprehend without a proper interest in Shakespeare. The Luhrman film was much more successful and made a lot more profit due to the amount of people all over the world that have gone to view his modern up to date illustration of Shakespeare. ...read more.

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