William Shakespeare's Romeo + Juliet

William Shakespeare's Romeo + Juliet

4.4 93
Director: Baz Luhrmann

Cast: Baz Luhrmann, Leonardo DiCaprio, Claire Danes, John Leguizamo


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The classic Shakespearean romantic tragedy is updated by director Baz Luhrmann to a post-modern Verona Beach where swords are merely a brand of gun and bored youths are easily spurred toward violence. Longtime rivals in religion and business, the Montagues and the Capulets share a page from the Jets and Sharks of See more details below

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The classic Shakespearean romantic tragedy is updated by director Baz Luhrmann to a post-modern Verona Beach where swords are merely a brand of gun and bored youths are easily spurred toward violence. Longtime rivals in religion and business, the Montagues and the Capulets share a page from the Jets and Sharks of West Side Story when they form rival gangs. Romeo (Leonardo DiCaprio) is aloof toward the goings-on of his Montague cousins, but after he realizes that Juliet (Claire Danes) is a Capulet at the end of one very wild party, the enmity between the two clans becomes the root of his angst. He relies heavily -- and with serious consequences -- on his rebel gender-bender of a friend, Mercutio (Harold Perrineau Jr.), and Father (not Friar) Lawrence (Pete Postlethwaite) for protection and support. Romeo is, of course, exiled, and it looks like Juliet will be forced into an arranged marriage with the bland Paris (Paul Rudd). It ends, as Romeo and Juliet must, when Romeo hears a tragic piece of misinformation and brings his suicide wish to what was meant to be Juliet 's temporary tomb. This time, though, the turf and the weapon of choice have taken a turn toward the surreal. ~ Tracie Cooper, All Movie Guide

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Editorial Reviews

Barnes & Noble - Kryssa Schemmerling
It's Shakespeare for the MTV generation. Director Baz Luhrman (Strictly Ballroom) brings his gaudy, overheated aesthetic to this hyperkinetic rendering of the Bard's famous romantic tragedy -- a movie that moves like an action film while keeping Shakespeare's text intact. Updated to the present and set in an unspecified Latin city bursting with tropical colors, red-hot mamas, gun-toting skin heads, and oversized religious icons, this Romeo and Juliet was a big hit with young moviegoers. Leonardo DiCaprio's turn here as Romeo put him on the map as a teen heartthrob, but it's the radiant Claire Danes who carries the picture. As the child-woman Juliet, she has a gravity and heartbreaking intensity that allow her to hold the screen in the midst of fast cuts and flying bullets.
All Movie Guide - Lucia Bozzola
For the 1996 cinematic version of Romeo+Juliet, Strictly Ballroom (1992) director Baz Luhrmann opted to flamboyantly update Shakespeare for the MTV generation. From the moment the Capulets and Montagues are introduced via the evening news, and the rival gangs engage in a semi-automatic "sword" shoot-out, Luhrmann's restlessly post-modern interpretation of the teen romance to end all others never lets up. The vibrant colors and costumes, florid "Verona Beach" settings, souped-up pace, watery balcony interlude, and kinetic widescreen cinematography culminate in a neon-lit death scene that alone was worth the Oscar nomination for Best Art Direction. The diverse soundtrack, including 1990s alternative rock, dance music, and a choral cover by Prince matches the equally eclectic cast. Not all critics, though, were enthralled by Luhrmann's hyper-stylized vision, nor convinced that Claire Danes and Leonardo DiCaprio's naturalistic style did justice to the Bard. Still, the couple's youth and chemistry added up to a convincing romance, helping to turn Romeo+Juliet into a box-office success, and leaving Berlin Film Festival prize-winner DiCaprio poised to become a teen dream in 1997's blockbuster Titanic.
Los Angeles Times
Like flaming youth everywhere, this film is loud, exuberant and excessive, but it has enough positive energy and dizzying high spirits to make it irresistible. Kenneth Turan

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Product Details

Release Date:
Original Release:
20th Century Fox
Region Code:
[Wide Screen]
Sales rank:

Special Features

Music machine feature; 3 audio commentaries with director Baz Luhrman, co-composer Craig Armstrong and co-composer Marius De Vries; Romeo + Juliet: The Music; The London Music Mix featurette; Journey of the Song featurettes - "Young Hearts Run Free," "Everybody's Free," and temp music

Cast & Crew

Performance Credits
Leonardo DiCaprio Romeo
Claire Danes Juliet
John Leguizamo Tybalt
Harold Perrineau Mercutio
Pete Postlethwaite Father Laurence
Paul Sorvino Fulgencio Capulet
Dash Mihok Benvolio
Vondie Curtis-Hall Captain Prince
Christina Pickles Caroline Montague
Jesse Bradford Balthasar
Brian Dennehy Ted Montague
Vincent Laresca Abra
Miriam Margolyes The Nurse
Paul Rudd Dave Paris
Diane Venora Gloria Capulet
M. Emmet Walsh Apothecary
Jamie Kennedy Sampson
Carlos Martin Manzo Ortalora Actor

Technical Credits
Baz Luhrmann Director,Producer,Screenwriter
Craig Armstrong Songwriter
Kym Barrett Costumes/Costume Designer
Jill Bilcock Associate Producer,Editor
Brigitte Broch Set Decoration/Design
Martin Brown Co-producer,Screenwriter
Maruis de Vries Songwriter
Catherine Doherty Set Decoration/Design
Garbage Songwriter
Miguel Gil Asst. Director
Doug Hardwick Art Director
Nellee Hooper Score Composer,Songwriter
Rebecca Marie Special Effects
Catherine Martin Associate Producer,Production Designer
Gabriella Martinelli Producer
Miguel Lima Martinez Asst. Director
Donald M. McAlpine Casting,Cinematographer
John (Cha Cha) O'Connell Choreography
Craig Pearce Screenwriter
David Rubin Casting
Martin Walters Asst. Director
Rob Young Sound/Sound Designer

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Scene Index

Disc #1 -- William Shakespeare's Romeo + Juliet
1. The Prologue [2:24]
2. Sycamore Grove [2:20]
3. Bachelor of the Year [2:49]
4. The Pool Hall [2:01]
5. The Capulet Mansion [2:10]
6. Mercutio at Sycamore Grove [2:42]
7. The Party Parties [7:14]
8. Romeo Spies Juliet [2:35]
9. Fulgencio Warns Tybalt [1:58]
10. Juliet, the Flirt [1:06]
11. First Kisses [1:07]
12. The Revelation [4:46]
13. The Party's Over [2:27]
14. Romeo Sneaks Back In [1:59]
15. Arranging the Marriage [4:09]
16. Boys on the Beach [1:25]
17. Romeo Gets the Word From the Nurse [6:31]
18. The Nurse Teases Juliet [4:19]
19. The Wedding [1:00]
20. Death on a Summer's Day [1:25]
21. Retribution at Twilight [2:37]
22. A Wedding Night [1:46]
23. Juliet Learns Her Options [2:57]
24. Romeo Misses a Message in Mantua [3:33]
25. Juliet Takes Her Medicine [8:23]
26. Romeo Learns of His Beloved's Fate [2:15]
27. Together at Last [1:47]
28. Epilogue [4:24]
29. End Titles [2:28]

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