William Shakespeare's Romeo + Juliet

William Shakespeare's Romeo + Juliet

4.4 93
Director: Baz Luhrmann, Leonardo DiCaprio, Claire Danes, John Leguizamo

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


View All Available Formats & Editions

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


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

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

Product Details

Release Date:
Original Release:
20th Century Fox
Region Code:
[Wide Screen]
[DTS 5.1-Channel Surround Sound, Dolby AC-3 Surround Sound]
Sales rank:

Special Features

Shaking up Shakespeare picture-in-picture mode with audio commentary by Baz Luhrmann, Catherine Martin, Donald McAlpine and Craig Pearce and featuring behind-the-scenes footage and stills; Uncut footage from the Bazmark Vault; Romeo + Juliet: The Music; Filmmaker and interview galleries; BD-Live**: Live lookup powered by IMDb

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


Customer Reviews

Average Review:

Write a Review

and post it to your social network


Most Helpful Customer Reviews

See all customer reviews >

William Shakespeare's Romeo + Juliet 4.4 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 93 reviews.
Guest More than 1 year ago
An excellent movie!!! No doubt about it!!! This is what Romeo and Juliet would have looked like if Shakespeare was alive today!!
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
riveting. visually stunning yet beautifully rendered Shakespeare!
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I think the director hit on Shakespeare’s intention. You can clearly see the original story but with a contemporary turn to it. This would make it better for high school students to understand. Luhrmann made sure that when you watch this movie full of fun and action, he will have you thinking this is nothing like what’s in the book, when really it’s the same story line. His use of details in the movie shows clearly what happen from the exposition to the resolution. I think if Shakespeare wanted Romeo and Juliet to be a movie this would have been it.      
goodgirl2 More than 1 year ago
very wonderful ! better than the orginal. Leo did a great job as Romeo and i recommend this movie to all the Leo fans.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
VA_Reader More than 1 year ago
This is my favorite film, something I had to hide from my crew of blue collar, hard drinking and street fighting friends growing up. I've always loved Shakespeare (another interest I hid for too long), and the idea of having his most well-known story re-told in a pseudo modern setting was something I couldn't resist. Thankfully, it didn't disappoint in the least. The acting, characters (obviously, set pieces and costumes, score.....everything about this movie was exquisite.
Guest More than 1 year ago
Having just seeen he movie for the fist time in a while, it renewed my passion for the story. It inspired me to start working on my own version..something very small. I loved Qindon Tarver's 'When Doves Cry' and 'Everybody's Free'. Those two songs totally make the movie complete. Over sll I loved it and will watch it over and over again. BAZ ROCKS!!!!
Guest More than 1 year ago
Wow! i was absolutely apalled at this version of romeo and juliet. First of all what is up with romeo doing drugs!!! second of all there is a really good reason why it is called the balcony scene not the pool scene. The balcony scene is supposed to be the most romantic part of the play.Shakespeare is probably screaming his lungs out!!!!please stick to the 1968 version and avoid this........Dissapointment
Guest More than 1 year ago
I first watched the film in class because we have to do it for coursework but me and my friends were soon obsessed! our teacher lent us the movie and we watched it over and over, the fish tank scene is soooo cute and romantic and the music is sensational. i've now downloaded all the songs on my iPod! well worth a watch!
Guest More than 1 year ago
This is a very romantic movie as Leonardo Dicapreao as Romeo and Clarie Danes as Juliet I like the scene where Romeo and Juliet fall into the pool and make love to each other I'ts sad though at the end Romeo dies and Juliet kills herself but it must be based on a true story of two young lovers Romeo and Juliet O Romeo where O tho Romeo? Tis my lady tis my love.
Guest More than 1 year ago
I loved Leonardo DiCaprio and Clair Danes. The ending I thought was good and bad. I liked it when Juliet was awake while Romeo was dying. Though the timing was just devastating, why was it so close? Anyway I liked it.
Guest More than 1 year ago
This is a movie that will stay with me forever. i think i liked the whole movie. the only part i didn't like was how they both end up dieing. i wish there was a different ending.
Guest More than 1 year ago
What a piece of work is a man...and an utter piece of sh-- THIS version is. William Shakespeare and Sir Laurence Olivier must be turning in their graves. Kenneth Branagh must be utterly apalled. AVOID this version at all costs.
Guest More than 1 year ago
Great film, they shoulda casted John as Some one else though, cause he dies, and I hate that....
Guest More than 1 year ago
First off, Claire Danes should never be allowed near a Shakespeare book ever again. You can tell that she didn't understand most of what she's saying. DiCaprio is only slightly better. Probably the most classic scene in all of English literature, the balcony scene, has them diving into a pool in the Capulet's backyard. Romeo is on drugs before he meets Juliet at the party, while Mercutio goes to the party as a cross dresser. All of the characters are reduced to nothing more than common gangsters in a Miami-esque Verona Beach, speeding around in convertibles and waving "sword" guns. The only scene I did like was tomb scene- that was an interesting take that I rather enjoyed, and I thought that was beautifully done. The rest of it was a sad attempt at modernizing Shakespeare. Needless to say it didn't work.
Guest More than 1 year ago
Sure. Romeo and Juliet is one of Shakespeare's greatest plays and it should be preserved 100%. But the work that they did in this version is outstanding! Even if you totally disagree with the theme it stays true to what Romeo and Juliet is. The actors are superb and the use of the city is beautiful and breathtaking. All in all- I don't know who could have done a better job on this play!
Guest More than 1 year ago
I'm sorry, but Leonardo DiCaprio should not be allowed to do Shakespeare ever again. He is horrible at it.
Guest More than 1 year ago
I love romeo+juliet becuse of the romantic scenes
Guest More than 1 year ago
There are many good points and just totally messed up point in this movie. Good points include fantastic acting, a fairly good set and very good music. Mr. Baz's(director)interprets this well known Shakespearean play into a high energy, teenage movie. Its bad points are as follows: His interpretation is not so good. One honestly sometimes gets lost with the Shakespearean language. The language looks so weird in the modern time and it takes adjusting to. Overall, it was a very unique viewing experience, and I would not mind watching it again.
Guest More than 1 year ago
This movie, i feel, was intended for non-old fashion people! It is so entertaining and moving in everyway. I felt the acting was fantastic and very believable. This is the movie that got me to come to love Shakespeare's work. Watch it!