6.6/10
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Romeo and Juliet (1936)

Passed | | Drama, Romance | 3 September 1936 (USA)
Young love is poisoned by a generations long feud between two noble families.

Director:

George Cukor

Writers:

William Shakespeare (play), Talbot Jennings (adaptation)
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Nominated for 4 Oscars. Another 1 win & 1 nomination. See more awards »

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In Shakespeare's classic play, the Montagues and Capulets, two families of Renaissance Italy, have hated each other for years, but the son of one family and the daughter of the other fall desperately in love and secretly marry.

Director: Renato Castellani
Stars: Laurence Harvey, Susan Shentall, Flora Robson
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Cast

Complete credited cast:
Norma Shearer ... Juliet - Daughter to Capulet
Leslie Howard ... Romeo - Son to Montague
John Barrymore ... Mercutio - Kinsman to the Prince and Friend to Romeo
Edna May Oliver ... Nurse to Juliet
Basil Rathbone ... Tybalt - Nephew to Lady Capulet
C. Aubrey Smith ... Lord Capulet
Andy Devine ... Peter - Servant to Juliet's Nurse
Conway Tearle ... Escalus - Prince of Verona
Ralph Forbes ... Paris - Young Nobleman Kinsman to the Prince
Henry Kolker ... Friar Laurence
Robert Warwick ... Lord Montague
Virginia Hammond ... Lady Montague - Wife to Montague
Reginald Denny ... Benvolio - Nephew to Montgue and Friend to Romeo
Violet Kemble Cooper ... Lady Capulet - Wife to Capulet
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Storyline

The Montagues and the Capulets, two powerful families of Verona, hate each other. Romeo, son of Montague, crashes a Capulet party, and there meets Juliet, daughter of Capulet. They fall passionately in love. Since their families would disapprove, they marry in secret. Romeo gets in a fight with Tybalt, nephew of Lady Capulet, and kills him. He is banished from Verona. Capulet, not knowing that his daughter is already married, proceeds with his plans to marry Juliet to Paris, a prince. This puts Juliet in quite a spot, so she goes to the sympathetic Friar Laurence, who married her to Romeo. He suggests a daring plan to extricate her from her fix. Tragedy ensues. Written by John Oswalt <jao@jao.com>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

Scenes of combat that will stir your pulse...tender haunting romance that will stay ever fresh in your memory...spectacular beauty that will set a feast for your eyes...in the greatest melodramatic romance of all time...presented as it has never been before...the final glorious flower of motion picture achievement.

Genres:

Drama | Romance

Certificate:

Passed | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Details

Country:

USA

Language:

English

Release Date:

3 September 1936 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Romeo og Julie See more »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Mono (Western Electric Sound System)

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

One minor complaint about this film version, according to many fans of the play, would be that Leslie Howard and Norma Shearer were physically too old to portray teenage lovers. At the time of this film's release, Howard was 43 years old; Shearer was 34 years old. See more »

Quotes

[first lines]
Narrator: 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 Emperor's Candlesticks (1937) See more »

Soundtracks

'Welcome, Sweet Pleasure
Written by Thomas Weelkes
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User Reviews

Fine Cast & Lavish Production
21 November 2005 | by Snow LeopardSee all my reviews

The fine cast and production make this adaptation of "Romeo & Juliet" a satisfying one, both as a movie and as a realization of Shakespeare's play. Most of the cast is matched up very well with their characters, and the lavish settings provide a good backdrop for the drama.

Although it's soon clear that Leslie Howard and Norma Shearer are quite a bit older than the original characters were, in other respects they are well cast. Shearer's eager innocence and Howard's refinement fit together well, and although they are clearly not the teenage characters of the original, their romance is believable and convincing in itself.

The other roles include some nice casting. Reginald Denny as the loyal Benvolio, Basil Rathbone as the hard-hearted Tybalt, and Edna May Oliver as Juliet's bustling nurse are all enjoyable to watch. But the highlight of the cast is John Barrymore, who steals every scene as the fun-loving, ill-fated Mercutio, a character who is well-suited to Barrymore's strengths. It's a blessing that at least one of Barrymore's numerous Shakespearean roles was captured in a film for posterity.

The script abridges many of the scenes for cinematic purposes, and it does well in fleshing out the basic story with the duels, festivities, and other events, at times also dramatizing developments that in the original text are only mentioned by the characters. Overall, it is a well-conceived, well-executed, and enjoyable movie version of the famous story.


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