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What techniques does Baz Luhrman use to make 'Romeo and Juliet' relevant to a modern audience?

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Introduction

What techniques does Baz Lurhman use to make the opening scene of 'Romeo and Juliet' relevant to a modern audience? Initially, the first thing that Baz Lurhman does to pull a modern audience into a Shakespearian tale is by having the prologue read aloud by black female newsreader. This brings the story into the modern world as even ten years previous to the film it would have been unheard of to have a black female newsreader. To entice the audience into the film, Baz Lurhman zooms in on the newsreader, giving the impression that he is pulling the audience into the film. ...read more.

Middle

modern newsreader, the fact that a newsreader is telling the audience the prologue lends one to believe that something serious has happened. In the corner of the television of the newsreader, a picture of two rings inscribed 'I love you' is seen. This too tells the audience that the film is going to be a love story. Then Loud opera like music is heard. The music itself sounds religious but also helicopters are heard. The scene itself shows the city, 'Verona beach' to be like a warzone with police cars and fighting everywhere. ...read more.

Conclusion

This tells the modern audience that although religion is very important in this city, both 'Montague' and 'Capulet' have overtaken it. Whilst the prologue is still being read two family trees appear with Jesus in between them , similar to the previous set up of the buildings and statue. This gives us a clear perspective as to who is who. This is also achieved when Baz Luhrman uses a soap-opera type technique in introducing the characters by freeze framing on the main characters and showing their names on the screen. ...read more.

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