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Romeo and Juliet - Baz Luhrmann claimed, "We are trying to make this film provocative, violent and entertaining.

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Introduction

Baz Luhrmann claimed, "We are trying to make this film provocative, violent and entertaining. As a fourteen year old, the same age as Juliet and just after St Valentine's Day when I had hoped my "yonder knight" would declare his undying love for me, it is relatively easy to identify with many of Shakespeare's universal themes. Therefore, Baz Luhrmann can transpose the written text into the film medium with certain ease. We, living in the Maiden City certainly understand, "what's in a name?" Furthermore, the parents rage and ancient grudge unfortunately still relates to my native city, where in spite of going to a co-educational, amalgamated, and integrated school of both "both houses" - protestant and catholic, we struggle to find a "glooming peace." For me, Luhrmann in his aim of being "provocative" has used a number of dramatic techniques to produce the "love at first sight" scene as being sexy, seductive and titillating to young people. In terms of casting, he has selected, Leonardo Di Caprio to play Romeo as he is regarded as a stereotypical sex symbol with ...read more.

Middle

It's music which "smooth"[s] that which is "rough" in keeping with the holy imagery to describe their love. Prepared as we are for violence right from Shakespeare's prologue with the "grudge," "rage," "foes," mutiny and even "death," Baz Luhrmann's version, similarly contains many hints of the parents "strife." "Fiery" Tybalt, the king of cats" is dressed in black and red colours, associated with "death" reminding me of the devil and the mafia. Even his horns and clenched metal teeth reinforce visually his violent intolerant nature as he "storm[s]" "to strike him dead I hold it not a sin," seeing his "rapier". Using the original text and consequently Shakespearean language, the diction and tone adds tension and force to this scene. For example Tybalt's sheering comment, "A villain that is hither come in spite, To scorn at our solemnity this night" With its sibilance, echoes the satanic contempt. Also 85-91, with its pair of rhyming couplets suggests Tybalt's determination to "finish" Romeo. ...read more.

Conclusion

Also, the distancing shot when Romeo finds out that he is in love with a "loathed enemy" makes the scene highly engaging. Whereas when they were together, not knowing who each other were, the camera shots were close and quick but when they find out whom they really are, the camera slowly zooms out from each face as if they are growing apart or they disliking one another more each second. Personally, at first I thought that this film was just another ordinary film but it's not, it's really good. An actual fact is that it is more about life than you would think, (as I learnt in class), its about war and conflict, having enemies for the sake of having an enemy, peace and relationships. I wouldn't do anything differently if I had been the director. I think Baz Luhrmann did exactly what he intended to do, which was to "make this film provocative, violent and entertaining." It changed the way I viewed Shakespeare's play. I enjoyed this film even though I haven't seen it all and I would definitely recommend it to others. Rebecca Caldwell ...read more.

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