Romeo + Juliet (1996)

PG-13   |    |  Drama, Romance


Romeo + Juliet (1996) Poster

Shakespeare's famous play is updated to the hip modern suburb of Verona still retaining its original dialogue.

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6.8/10
194,127

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  • Claire Danes and Leonardo DiCaprio in Romeo + Juliet (1996)
  • Cameron Diaz at an event for Romeo + Juliet (1996)
  • Amanda De Cadenet at an event for Romeo + Juliet (1996)
  • Claire Danes and Leonardo DiCaprio at an event for Romeo + Juliet (1996)
  • Claire Danes and Leonardo DiCaprio in Romeo + Juliet (1996)
  • Harold Perrineau in Romeo + Juliet (1996)

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30 December 1999 | Cherry-19
10
| An eye-catching, starkly bold and breathtaking update of Shakespeare's greatest work.
This film is incredible. Yes, the play is modernized, and for those who panned the film, I suppose originality was too much to take. Luhrmann stays with the original dialogue, which I believe adds much to the film and gives it authenticity. Therefore it cannot be dismissed as a masterpiece dumbed down to appeal to us easy to please teenagers. The camera work at the most dark parts of the film is quick and choppy, adding to the already potent and ever present depressing, tragic atmosphere. All of the leads were strong, with Danes and DiCaprio having amazing chemistry. In this film DiCaprio wasn't popular yet, so again critics can't say Leo was the draw for this film. Danes was emotionally pure and driven, and this is her best work to date aside from the critical darling, "My So-Called Life." No, the leads were cast with good reason - there couldn't have been any better. Supporting roles were wonderful, with the roles of Mercutio and Tybalt being exceptional, and the friar, who may be the most important character in the story, is brought to life by Postalwaithe The dreamy underwater shots are fantastic. Luhrmann's version of this classic tragedy plays to both a younger and older audience, adding touches such as the names of the guns being the names of swords; and he yet updates the setting, bringing the fantastic Verona, Italy to Verona Beach, Florida. A timeless story such as this makes any criticism of this film unnecessary and foolish; view it with an open mind and you will see the story as Shakespeare wrote it and as Luhrmann envisioned it.

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