RomeoJulietPaper - Romeo and Juliet is an example of how...

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Romeo and Juliet is an example of how cinematic interpretations of William Shakespeare have become more liberal over time. The play has universal themes of youthful passion, destructive feuds , and doomed romance, and it remains uniquely adaptable for any time period. The 1936 and 1996 film versions of romeo and Juliet had several significant comparisons: portrayals of Mercutio ,Romeo, a difference of which side had the bumbling character, Paris and the Nurse. The 1996 film had an obsession with guns throughout the movie. Cukor's movie had an older established cast while the 1996 movie had youthful, and cheaper cast. Baz Luhrman and George Cukor each had a unique vision that was brought to the screen in their film versions. Lord Capulet reaction to Juliet's disdain for being ordered to marry Paris. Mercutio in the Cukor film, was played by fifty-something John Barrymore. He is introduced to us by leading Romeo's and an entourage to the Capulet's masquerade ball. Mercutio sees a group of ladies looking out a window, and he starts throwing flowers towards them. Then he climbs the trellis to get closer to the ladies. The giggling ladies are begging him to stay and cheering his every move. The entourage has to pry Mercutio off of the trellis, to get him to continue with them to the party. Mercutio in the 1996 film, is presented by a closeup of a license plate with his name attached to a flashy sports car. We see a black drag queen step out the vehicle wearing red lipstick with a silver dress and matching heels. The Montague crew are unfazed by his appearance or the fact that he pulls an invitation to the Capulet party from his crotch. The fact that he hands romeo an ecstasy tablet, and then a slow motion montage of shots builds a psychedelic fantasy. The modern Mercutio is skilled with a gun and hand to hand combat. His encounter with Tybalt, gives the impression that they were both homosexuals and perhaps lovers at one time. Tybalt always appeared in a suit and his face had eye makeup on it. Mercutio, puts the gun down and fights Tybalt in hand to hand combat. But, both Mercutio's were dressed flamboyantly,
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Barrymore in bold prints and an earring. The modern Mercutio was wearing a silver dress and sheer shirt which clearly made them stand out from the others. Mercutio's character was placed in cinematic settings which placed them above the entourage so they could stand out. Whether it was Barrymore climbing a trellis towards the ladies, or Harold Perrineau's singing "Young Hearts Be Free" in drag on the Capulet's staircase. Mercutio was symbolically climbing something to ensure they were the center of attention. The perception of Romeo as a suave, confident ladies man. People would refer to young men who had success with the ladies as Romeo. The modern Romeo and Juliet showed a completely different Romeo, that dispelled that myth. Romeo was distraught over Rosaline, who was barely mentioned in the 1936 film. The modern movie, wrote her name on a chalkboard and
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This note was uploaded on 11/01/2010 for the course MC 546 taught by Professor Enos during the Spring '10 term at Jackson State.

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RomeoJulietPaper - Romeo and Juliet is an example of how...

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