n director Baz Luhrmann’s contemporary take on William Shakespeare’s classic tragedy, the Montagues and Capulets have moved their ongoing feud to the sweltering suburb of Verona Beach, where Romeo (Leonardo DiCaprio) and Juliet (Claire Danes) fall in love and secretly wed. Though the film is visually modern, the bard’s dialogue remains intact as the feuding families’ children pay a disastrous cost for their mutual affection. (Netflix)
THIS MOVIE IS AWESOME!!!! This is quite possibly my favorite Shakespeare adaptation that I have ever seen. The concept of Verona Beach in the 90s I thought was a stretch at first, but I was so wrong. Everything fit in seamlessly, and the heightened Shakesperian language felt like it belonged there. The acting was absolutely fantastic. There was not one single weak link in the cast. Especially loved Harold Perrineau as Mercutio. He gave a fresh look on the character, which made his Queen Mab and Plague on Both Your Houses monologues really compelling. What really made this movie though, was the directing and editing. Having the balcony scene take place in a pool, with the lovers actually right next to each other gave it a sense of urgency that the original blocking does not. Also, the suicide scene. OH. MY. FREAKING. GOD. Traditionally, it is a lot of back and forth between the tomb and Friar Laurence outside, and Juliet wakes up after Romeo is already dead. Instead, it’s just the lovers in their tomb. and Juliet wakes up and Romeo sees her RIGHT AFTER HE SWALLOWS THE POISON! AHHHHHH. Then, Romeo’s last words were intertwined with the beginning of Juliet’s ending monologue, ah It killed me. This was honestly the first time I’ve seen an adaptation in which I actually wanted her to wake up in time and for them to be together. Seriously, if you love Shakespeare, go watch this movie. Like Right Now.
10/10. An absolutely beautiful adaptation.