Top Five Things I Liked About Romeo and Juliet
1. Hailee Steinfeld
Juliet's two weeks shy of turning fourteen. Yet she's usually portrayed by actresses in their twenties. Steinfeld's only sixteen, so (A) she looks the way Shakespeare would want her to (B) the wedding night scene isn't so icky. Thank you, child protection laws.
The Capulet's color is blue and the Montagues are red. But Romeo is usually shown in blue, symbolizing his connection to Juliet. She's wearing pink in the balcony scene when they really start to fall in love. By the end of the movie, she's in red, symbolizing her connection to Romeo. Or blood and death and gore. Take your pick.
3. Rosaline speaks!
She had to be something special if Romeo liked her first. Lots of directors don't even cast Rosaline. Shakespeare didn't bother to give her any lines. In this version, she gets to speak twice or thrice.
4. Subtle puns
My friends and I laughed so much more than the group next to us. It pays to be familiar with Shakespeare.
Them: "Oh, Romeo's talking about pilgrims while holding Juliet's hand."
Us: "Yeah, you go on thinking that."
Just look at the guy.
1. Nice Mama
In the play, Lady Capulet keeps the feud alive more than her husband. In this version she's all, "Oh no, sweetie, don't beat our daughter so she'll submit to marriage."
2. Dead Mama
Doesn't Lady Montague get an off-screen death? She's quite alive in the final scene.
He's such a goofball in the play. In this movie, he wanders around looking for a fight.
Quick story: In ninth grade, my English teacher let some boys act out the fencing scene. It's still one of the most hilarious things I've seen. So here we've got three boys, books in one hand and yardsticks in the other, trying to read and whack each other at the same time. Mercutio wasn't very happy about his death. So while Romeo and Benvolio are mourning his slaughter, the guy sits up and shouts, "I'm not dead yet!" This continued about ten minutes.
4. A Rose by any other name would Sting as Sharply
Romeo uses the roses wrapped around a pillar to reach Juliet's balcony. Um, shouldn't that hurt? He's not wearing gloves or anything. At least Juliet finally showed him another exit.
Look at the imdb cast list. Which name comes first? Romeo? Juliet? Or Capulet Servant Number Two?