Adam and Eden fell in love as teens despite the fact that they live on twinned worlds with gravities that pull in opposite directions. Ten years after a forced separation, Adam sets out on a dangerous quest to reconnect with his love.
Sparks fly when spirited Elizabeth Bennet meets single, rich, and proud Mr. Darcy. But Mr. Darcy reluctantly finds himself falling in love with a woman beneath his class. Can each overcome their own pride and prejudice?
Passionate, enjoyable film but with many shortcomings
I am in two minds about this film: On the one hand I can honestly say that I enjoyed it and that it swept me away in the timeless love story. On the other hand there are several things that really bothered me and that I believe would disqualify it from being classified a "good" film.
Firstly, the bad:
1) The movie doesn't follow Shakespeare's original text. Sure enough, the most famous lines are all there, but the movie frequently deviates from Shakespeare's text. The simplification of some text insults the intelligence of the audience and does seem a little arrogant on the parts of the screenwriters. It also doesn't help that much of the changes has the feel of modern speech being rewritten in an "old-english-sounding" tongue which clearly stands out from the classic words of the bard. Not even the ending escapes some liberal changes. 2)Hailee Steinfeld is really a bad casting decision for Juliet. She is simply so much younger than Romeo that their on-screen chemistry looks a bit creepy. Her portrayal of Juliet lacks depth and she simply does not possess the beauty to be a Juliet - especially if you pair her with Douglas Booth as Romeo. (Another reviewer complained that Romeo is more beautiful than Juliet in this film and I have to agree that this is true)
Now for the good: 1) Bringing fierceness and intense passion to the role, I thought Douglas Booth was a really good Romeo. 2) Paul Giamatti is excellent as Friar Laurence. He brings some comic relief, lightness and heart to the film. 3) The story is fast-paced, passionate and intense. Enough of Shakespeare's most-loved soliloquies and dialogue appear to retain the timeless beauty of his words. The words still bring layer upon layer of meaning to the story and brings so much depth and emotion to the story of the star-crossed lovers that one can't help but wander at just how Shakespeare was able to get so much emotion into so few lines.
I give this film a score of 7 as I quite enjoyed it despite it's flaws. Don't watch this movie if you have to do a school project on Romeo and Juliet, though!
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