Baz Luhrmann's 1996 film, Romeo + Juliet effectively appropriates the Shakespearean 16th century love tragedy. So why has Luhrmann decided to appropriate Romeo and Juliet? By changing the context, Luhrmann effectively makes the play relevant, discussing his contextual concerns of the 1990’s. This is done through the use of themes in the film, love, family disputes and hate which have remained similar to the original play, although the way they have been presented are different, in particular the form and characters. The form has had an obvious change as the original play has been adapted into a film. Characters in the film have also been appropriated to correspond with Luhrmann's contextual concerns. Hence, Luhrmann successfully appropriates the original Shakespeare play, Romeo and Juliet by maintaining similar themes, but altering the form and characterisation to fit his contextual concerns.
How effective is Luhrmann’s film Romeo and Juliet as a modern day appropriation of Shakespeare's play you ask? Baz Luhrmann's appropriation of the original play of “Romeo And Juliet” is highly effective as it is modernized to meet the interests and expectations of a 20th century teenage audience. Throughout the original 16th century play, Shakespeare develops the themes of family rivalry and love. The theme of family rivalry has been implemented into the original play through the conflict between two powerful families in the city of Verona. Throughout his appropriation of the play, Baz Luhrmann successfully preserves the same concept of family rivalry but modernises it by portraying the two families as two large business corporations and brands who are constantly in competition with each other. Shakespeare implements the theme of love through main character Romeo being made to resemble and fulfil the role of a typical "Petrarchan lover". Luhrmann also effectively integrates the theme of love through his successful use of filmic techniques to illustrate the unbreakable love between Romeo and Juliet whose love resembles and portrays the characteristics of a 20th century relationship. Using these modern elements, Luhrmann’s film effectively appeals to the contemporary teenage audience whilst powerfully conveying the themes of family rivalry and love. These adaptations made by Luhrmann in his film create a more comprehensible meaning as teenagers can relate to the film with a
In the opening scenes of Romeo and Juliet Baz Luhrman uses camera shots, hidden symbols and a quick introduction to capture the hatred and tension between the Montagues and Capulets. To give us background information on the feuding families Luhrman begins the movie with a news reporter broadcasting about Romeo and Juliet which is followed by a bunch of newspaper headlines about the competitive families. A shot of the city is featured, depicting Capulet and Montague sky scrapers on opposite sides of the road. The city shot and the newspaper articles give us the impression that the two families, Montague and Capulets are enemies and are constantly rivalling and are mortal enemies.
In Act I Scene I we are introduced to the play’s antagonist, Tybalt. Perpetrator of the play’s violence and fuel to the conflict, Tybalt is constantly drawn to violence and uses family honour as his reasoning. His malevolence is shown from the onset of the play: “What, art thou drawn among these heartless hinds? Turn thee, Benvolio; look upon thy death.” Initial impressions of Tybalt include that his character is domineering and antagonistic, vindictive and unscrupulous. The topic of violence and death is the theme of his first few lines. Rather, the word “death” is syntactically placed at the end of the sentence, resonating and leaving a lingering impression. With regards to the context of the original play, status and power are explored within
William Shakespeare’s play, Romeo and Juliet, tells the story of the tragic love between Romeo Montague and Juliet Capulet. The play has been reinterpreted throughout time and Baz Luhrmann’s film version, William Shakespeare’s Romeo + Juliet, uses a modern setting to tell the tale. Luhrmann’s cinematic understanding reinforces the key themes of love, fate and hate as he explores Shakespeare’s famous play.
Baz Lurhmann’s creation of the film Romeo and Juliet has shown that today’s audience can still understand and appreciate William Shakespeare. Typically, when a modern audience think of Shakespeare, they immediately think it will be boring, yet Lurhmann successfully rejuvenates Romeo and Juliet. In his film production he uses a number of different cinematic techniques, costumes and a formidably enjoyable soundtrack; yet changes not one word from Shakespeare’s original play, thus making it appeal to a modern audience.
Of the two cinematic portrayals of the climax, in Act II, scene i, of Romeo & Juliet, the Luhrmann version from 1996 is superior to the Zeffirelli version. When comparing the two one can notice that there are many differences, and similarities. While these two films are telling the same story, it is the differences between the two that lead to Luhrmann’s 1996 version being superior. Due to its more dramatic settings, and character interactions and actor
The film and the play, Romeo and Juliet is an ever grey due to tragic over tones play which draws undivided attention of Shakespeare’s writing even during this modern era. The 1996 version, Baz Lurhmann adopted the storyline to reflect the revealing trend of dispute between two feuding families. A film which shows a detailed study of the play of the immensely popular 1996 version directed by Baz Lurhmann.
“The most filmed of all plays, ‘Romeo and Juliet’, with its universal themes… remains uniquely adaptable for any time period,” (Botnick, 2002). Directors Franco Zeffirelli (1968) and Baz Luhrman
“William Shakespeare’s Romeo + Juliet”, as portrayed in Luhrmann’s 1997 film, reveals that the cause of love will always lead to the consequence of death. Luhrmann focuses on highlighting this connection through the usage of props, costumes, and symbols, the foreshadowing of Romeo’s and Juliet’s fate, and Romeo’s compassion for his friends and family throughout the film. These aspects of the film emphasize the connection of love and death and explore the harsh realities and truths relating to this connection.
Romeo and Juliet is a timeless story about two ill-fated lovers. Originally written by, Shakespeare, this story has been adapted by different directors who all commonly try to add their own unique twist to it. Two of the most prevalent adaptations of Romeo and Juliet have been done by Franco Zeffirelli and Baz Luhrmann, who have taken this love story to the big screen. Franco Zeffirelli’s movie, which was produced in 1968, is extremely authentic and stays true to Shakespeare's vision, whereas, Baz Luhrmann’s version produced in 1996, is contemporary and appeals more to younger audiences. There are various differences and a couple of similarities between Zeffirelli’s and Luhrmann’s movie versions such as the costumes, their interpretations of
In the different film adaptations of Romeo and Juliet, Franco Zefirelli best conveys an emotional impact through the set design, blocking, and other theatrical elements. Zefirelli also chooses to have the film in the fourteenth century so that Shakespeare’s diction is comprehensible. From this, Zeffirelli adaptation is best conveys the romantic impact Shakespeare intends to emphasize.
In the Baz Luhrmann version of Romeo and Juliet he modernised many scenes such as the balcony scene (pool scene), fight scenes and tomb scene. The scenes aren't the only thing that is modernised the costumes and props are also modernised.
Discuss the appropriation of ‘Romeo and Juliet’ by William Shakespeare and ‘Romeo+Juliet’ by Baz Luhrmann
When the play is looked at in terms of being performed the violence becomes even more prevalent and jarring — further emphasizing the pressure the men of Verona have to be violent. Frequent editorial stage directions explicitly state for fights and deaths to occur on stage. Even a director who aims for a subtle interpretation cannot escape the gruesome impact of the glorification of violence in Verona. Scenes are filled with “Clubs, bills, and partisans!” and calls for “down with the Capulets! Down with the Montagues!” (1.1.82-84). Even those who do not align themselves with one side or the other cheer on and encourage the fighting. The violence exists as a determinant of power above even the names of the top families in the community. Violence is important to the men in Verona because it gives them an outlet to display and show off their masculinity. Performing these scenes live in a production of the