Romeo & Juliet
Romeo & Juliet (1996) – Originally written August 2003
*** This review may contain spoilers ***
Ok, yeah this will contain SPOILERS, but does that really matter since anyone who doesn’t know the plot already must have lived in a coma all their lives.
One of these days, I’ll write a review, just for the hell of it, of a film that I DON’T like. However, your not going to find that review here as I thought this was brilliant.
Baz Luhrmann creates here a modern interpretation of one of the greatest works of literature of all time. As a big fan of Shakespeare, I confess to prefering Othello (Iago is my all time favourite fictional character) and Hamlet, but for a play I’ve read far too often, Luhrmann made me feel like I was watching it for the first time. This film shows the story of the star crossed lovers in a new and fresh way. Yes people condemn (the person who wrote a review without actually watching the film for one. I mean, whats that about. It’s a film review site!), but some people do keep an open mind. To relocate a story based so far in the past to the future is a brave idea which admittedly often doesn’t work. In this case though, it does. I think in the end of the day, we need to accept that the appeal of Romeo & Juliet is that irrelevant of when you set it, it is a universal story. It is impossible not to bond with at least one of the characters, irrelevant of the era.
Anyway, once you get over the time relocation, there isn’t much wrong with this film really. I confess that if I had to choose between the acting abilities of the relatively fresh faced Leo DiCaprio & Claire Danes & the more recent matured incarnations of those actors, I’d choose the more recent ones (after his original few roles, theres no denying Leo has developed 10 fold as an actor & Claire’s break obviously has done her the world of good), but I can’t help but feel that to rob the characters of the actors almost naivity would ruin this film. Part of the beauty is that Leo & Claire do seem to be as youthful in pretending to be the characters as the characters were themselves. No-one should be allowed to condemn the acting in this film as without the occasional youthful mistake, it probably wouldn’t be as enjoyable.
Right, now to try & work up the effort to think of a film I hate & write a review of that. Going to be difficult though.