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Romeo + Juliet (1996)

 -  Drama | Romance  -  1 November 1996 (USA)
6.9
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Ratings: 6.9/10 from 139,121 users   Metascore: 60/100
Reviews: 491 user | 98 critic | 20 from Metacritic.com

Shakespeare's famous play is updated to the hip modern suburb of Verona still retaining its original dialogue.

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(play), (screenplay), 1 more credit »
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Title: Romeo + Juliet (1996)

Romeo + Juliet (1996) on IMDb 6.9/10

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Nominated for 1 Oscar. Another 13 wins & 22 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

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Storyline

Shakespeare's famous play is updated to the hip modern suburb of Verona still retaining its original dialogue. The gun-toting members of the families wage a vicious war on the streets as the star-crossed lovers meet their tragic destiny. Written by Alexander Lum <aj_lum@postoffice.utas.edu.au>

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

The Classic Love Story Set in Our Time. See more »

Genres:

Drama | Romance

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated PG-13 for scenes of contemporary violence and some sensuality | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

 »
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Details

Official Sites:

Country:

Language:

Release Date:

1 November 1996 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

William Shakespeare's Romeo + Juliet  »

Filming Locations:

 »

Box Office

Budget:

$14,500,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend:

ITL 692,167,000 (Italy) (28 February 1997)

Gross:

ITL 3,795,630,000 (Italy) (2 May 1997)
 »

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

| |

Color:

Aspect Ratio:

2.35 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Claire Danes's first day on set filming with Leonardo DiCaprio was the topless scene after Romeo and Juliet have first spent the night together. See more »

Goofs

The Nurse's position in the church. See more »

Quotes

[first lines]
Anchorwoman: Two households, both alike in dignity. In Fair Verona where we lay our scene. From ancient grudge break to new mutiny. Where civil blood makes civil hands unclean. From forth the fatal loins of these two foes, a pair of star-crossed lovers take their life.
See more »

Connections

Referenced in The Nostalgia Chick: Cruel Intentions (2011) See more »

Soundtracks

Lovefool
Performed by The Cardigans
Written by Peter Svensson and Nina Persson
Produced by Tore Johansson
The Cardigans appear courtesy of Stockholm Records
by arrangement with Polygram Film & TV Licensing
See more »

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User Reviews

A contemporary twist to a classic play
3 January 1999 | by (Boston, Massachusetts) – See all my reviews

Director Baz Luhrmann knew what he was doing when he cast Claire Danes and Leonardo DiCaprio in the title roles of William Shakespeare's Romeo and Juliet. The two young actors have the power to captivate their audience and together, they are unsurpassable.

From the famous opening line of "Two Households both alike in dignity.." to the tragic end, the viewer is whisked away into the depths of the surrealistic world of Verona Beach. Don't expect to see British people prancing around in tights when you rent this one. Luhrmann creates a world where gun toting teens sport Hawaiian shirts and beach front brawls are an everyday event.

Giving the classic play this modern twist makes for a new understanding of the text and brings the feud between the Montagues and the Capulets to a whole new level. Shakespeare may be rolling around in his grave after seeing this film, but english classes all over the world can breathe a little easier when it comes time to take the R&J final exam because this new adaptation makes the theme remarkably understandable.

Danes brings life and incentive to the character of Juliet. Danes' Juliet reaches far beyond the subservient stereotype of most Elizabethan characters and has ambition and assertion. It is a step beyond her critically acclaimed work in "My So-Called Life" and has thankfully made her a more prominent figure in the entertainment industry.

This marked the last feature for Leonardo DiCaprio, pre-Titanic mayhem. It put his talent out for a wider range of audience, R&J being his first major studio production. The king of the indie and the "troubled child" role was now being recognized. His passionate portrayl of Romeo Montague will forever be remembered. He spoke the immortal words of Shakespeare as if they were his own and touched the hearts of millions. Too bad the boat movie shoved him further into the spotlight than he had ever wanted. But we won't get into that.

The supporting cast in this film was also outstanding. John Leguizamo played the wily, Tybalt. Harold Perrineau brought humor and diversity to the renowned role of Mercutio. Big names also lit up the credits of R&J with Paul Sorvino and Brian Dennehey as Capulet and Montague as well as Pete Postlethwaite as the star-cross'd lovers confidante, Friar Laurence.

This is my favorite movie of all time and I believe it was sadly underrated.


57 of 89 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

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