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The prologue and Act III, Scene I of Shakespeare’s Romeo and Juliet are tackled in different ways by different directors. How does Franco Zeffirelli and Baz Lurhmann interpret these sections in order to bring the drama alive

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Cally Hodgkinson 7th December 2001 Shakespeare The prologue and Act III, Scene I of Shakespeare's Romeo and Juliet are tackled in different ways by different directors. How does Franco Zeffirelli and Baz Lurhmann interpret these sections in order to bring the drama alive. William Shakespeare's Romeo and Juliet is about "Two star cross'd lovers" who take their lives. It is a famous tragic love story, which is as popular today as in Shakespeare's time. Two film directors have produced the play but have interpreted it in different ways, in order to bring the drama alive. Franco Zeffirelli directed his film in the 1970's and produced a very traditional version. Where on Baz Lurhmann's 1998 adaption, set in modern America and is very new although he does use Shakespeare's language. Both directors retain the prologue as an introduction to their films. Shakespeare's prologue, written in sonnet form, gives an overview of the play and Baz Lurhmann + Franco Zeffirelli use it for different purposes. Lurhmann's prologue gives a very dramatic opening to the film. ...read more.


Mercutio is very camp in this scene emphasizing ways. He says "And but one word with one of us? Couple it with something make it a word and a blow" which is mocking Tybalt's masculinity and his anger becomes greater. As Romeo appears Tybalt ignores Mercutio and says "Peace be with you sir here comes my man." Romeo starts being serious and asks for peace, and puts his hand out. Tybalt hits his hand away and replies saying "Peace? I hate the word." He then starts beating Romeo. Mercutio can't believe his eyes when he sees Romeo isn't defending himself. He drops his gun in the sand, picks up a piece of wood and starts hitting Tybalt. Who then throws Mercutio onto the glass, which breaks into pieces. Tybalt is so angry that he picks up a piece of glass and aims to stab Romeo but by accident he gets Mercutio, who is trying to protect Romeo. Mercutio doesn't realise how deep the cut is and just says it's a scratch. He then makes a couple of jokes about it like "Ask for me tomorrow and you shall find me a grave man." ...read more.


And if we meet, we shall not escape a brawl, for now these hot days is the mad blood stirring." He knows the Capulet's are likely to cause trouble but Mercutio isn't bothered and says, "I will not move for no man's pleasure." When the Capulet's came, Mercutio starts cracking jokes and winding Tybalt up and he gets quite angry with Tybalt when he says, "Mercutio, thou consortest with Romeo." Mercutio answers "Consort? What, dost thou make us minstrels? And thou minstrels of us, look to hear nothing but discords. Here's my fiddlestick, here's that shall make you dance. Zounds, consort!" When Romeo comes onto the scene, he's very happy because he's married Juliet who he's in love with. However Tybalt now focuses all his attention on Romeo, Romeo however has no intention of fighting Tybalt ever. After Tybalt has insulted him, Romeo responds by saying " Tybalt, the reason that I have to love thee doth much excuse the appertaining rage to such a greeting. Villain am I none. Therefore farewell. I see thou knowest me not". To all watching this seems like a huge joke to annoy Tybalt but when Romeo will not fight Mercutio does by saying " O calm, dishonorable, vile submission." He thinks Romeo is a coward. ...read more.

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