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Study how Romeo changes in Act 3, Scene 1 of Romeo and Juliet, by looking at how different directors have chosen to dramatise the scene.

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Introduction

GCSE Shakespeare Coursework Assignment Task: Study how Romeo changes in Act 3, Scene 1 of Romeo and Juliet, by looking at how different directors have chosen to dramatise the scene. Act 3, Scene 1 is the scene that seals Romeo and Juliet's fates. At the beginning, Romeo is calm and controlled but by the end he is in despair at what he has done. Blaming himself for Mercutio's death he believes that love has made him soft. Without thought he kills Tybalt and utters 'I am fortune's fool'. Romeo changes a lot in this scene. He begins to act as if the Capulets are not his enemies. After his marriage to Juliet he now thinks fighting is a pointless activity. Romeo is now acting as if Tybalt is his family and thinks that life could not get any better. 'And so good, Capulet, which name I tender as dearly as mine own, be satisfied.' ...read more.

Middle

In the film adaptations of the scene they are both directed very differently. The older version directed by Franco Zeffirelli stays more faithful to the original play. The more recent version directed by Baz Luhrmann contains cars, guns (that are referred to as 'longswords') and much more modern styles of clothing. The setting in both versions is different. Zeffirelli's version is in a town square while Lurhmann's version is on a beach. Both show the heat with dust, sand and the sun visible in many shots. The costumes of both houses are very different in both versions. The colours of the Capulet costumes in Zeffirelli's version are mostly red and the Montague's in blue. Tybalt also has horns on his head to even greater represent his devil image. The characters are portrayed in a similar way. Romeo is a lovesick person who hates fighting. ...read more.

Conclusion

At the end of the scene right after Mercutio has been stabbed, he is stumbling along the beach as the storm approaches and funereal music is played. There are hardly any props except for the swords of course and the guns in the modern version. In the Zeffirelli version the Capulets all have swords on show whereas the majority of the Montagues have no swords or none by their sides. The atmosphere is more dramatic in the modern version. I thought the idea of a storm approaching was a good idea showing that something bad was obviously going to happen. If I had to direct Act 3, Scene 1 I would direct it in a futuristic setting. It would still keep the story and the language but set in about a hundred years time. Romeo changes from good humoured to rage in an instant. He quickly dispatches Tybalt and immediately realizes what he has done and how he and his wife, Juliet are now doomed. ...read more.

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