Reinterpreting Shakespeare

Essay by JFaltyn08College, UndergraduateB+, November 2014

download word file, 4 pages 0.0

Jillian Faltyn

English 160

Paper 1

Baz Luhrmann can be considered an acquired taste within the cinematic world. He chooses to show off his idiosyncrasies throughout his works, and takes the audience on an adventure while they watch his films. His vibrant and urgent ideas splash across the screen in their cinematic glory, proving that Luhrmann is a skilled crafter of his art. His interpretation of Romeo and Juliet is not an easily forgotten one. With an extensive job of characterization, Luhrmann challenges the audience to see Shakespeare's work in a different light. By updating the setting, and costuming to something more of the time period the play becomes more relatable, while word choice, or lack of word choice, helps to show a deeper level of the character, instead of what's only on the surface. The end result is a Shakespearean film experience made not only for your ears to enjoy, but for your eyes as well.

In the first act while Capulet is speaking to Paris about his daughter, Juliet, he says, "My child is yet a stranger in the world; She hath not seen the change of fourteen years,.." With Juliet being so young, Luhrmann was faced with the challenge of finding an actress who could execute the part well, and still look young enough. Girls around the age of fourteen may look the part, but not be able to capture it fully, while girls with distinguished acting skills may be able to play Juliet, but not look of age. His choice of Claire Daines was reputable because even though she was seventeen at the time, she still had a young and bright face to pull off the youthful part excellently.

Later on in the play, while talking with Juliet, Lady Capulet declares, "I was your mother much...