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Romeo And Juliet (us)

3.7 out of 5 stars 272 customer reviews

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Editorial Reviews

Romeo and Juliet, William Shakespeare's epic and searing tale of love, is revitalized on screen by writer Julian Fellowes (Downton Abbey) and director Carlos Carlei (The Flight of the Innocent). An ageless story from the world's most renowned author is reimagined for the 21st Century. This adaptation is told in the lush traditional setting it was written, but gives a new generation the chance to fall in love with the enduring legend. With an all-star cast including Hailee Steinfeld, Douglas Booth, Paul Giamatti and Stellan Skarsgard, it affords those unfamiliar with the tale the chance to put faces to the two names they've undoubtedly heard innumerable times: Romeo and Juliet. Every generation deserves to discover this lasting love.

Product Details

  • Actors: Hailee Steinfeld, Douglas Booth
  • Format: Multiple Formats, AC-3, Color, Dolby, NTSC, Subtitled, Widescreen
  • Language: English (Dolby Digital 5.1)
  • Subtitles: English, Spanish
  • Region: Region 1 (U.S. and Canada only. Read more about DVD formats.)
  • Aspect Ratio: 2.40:1
  • Number of discs: 1
  • Rated:
    PG-13
    Parents Strongly Cautioned
  • Studio: 20th Century Fox
  • DVD Release Date: February 4, 2014
  • Run Time: 119 minutes
  • Average Customer Review: 3.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (272 customer reviews)
  • ASIN: B00H4BHIGW
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #16,363 in Movies & TV (See Top 100 in Movies & TV)

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: DVD
I am a firm believer that there are many ways to re-tell a story, and whether a story or book may have been adapted before, others come up with their own version that is fresh and different and worth seeing. So while I have seen (and love) the 1968 version with Olivia Hussey and Leonard Whiting and enjoyed the modern-day revisionist version by Baz Luhrmann, I found myself also enjoying this new version very much.

It is worth noting that the screenplay was penned by British screenwriter Julian Fellowes (Oscar-nominated "Gosford Park," "The Young Victoria" and that lovely gem of a mini-series "Downton Abbey").

The cast is comprised of both respected veterans (Damian Lewis, Paul Giamatti, Stellan Skarsgard, Lesley Manville) and young, up-and-coming actors (Douglas Booth, Hailee Steinfeld, Christian Cooke, Kodi Smit-McPhee).

The sets are sumptuous (all of the filming was done in Italy and the Italian landscape and architecture are themselves stars in the film) along with the beautiful costumes.

It should be noted that this film is not a copy of the 1968 version. It stands on its own - some scenes are presented differently than the 1968 version; other scenes are brought in that are not in previous versions and vice versa. In addition, if you are a Shakespeare scholar, then please note that the filmmakers had stated from the beginning that they wanted to make a Romeo & Juliet in the classic setting that would appeal to modern audiences. So if you are expecting a word-for-word presentation of Shakespeare's work, then you will be disappointed. Those looking for a definitive R&J adaptation may be better off renting//buying the 1968 version or going to see the Shakespeare play.
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The costumes and scenery are astoundingly beautiful- I wish I could review them separately. Everything else just slaughtered this ancient story.
For one, I am personally offended by the blatant disregard for the characters of the Nurse and Mercutio. First, Mercutio's a Montague (???) who we barely see twice, whose genius is entirely muted and cast aside, and whose death is hardly affecting. Unforgivable. The nurse is a sweet, unassuming, mousy old lady. Blasphemous and irresponsible.
The families have a jousting competition to quell their rage? A pointless, outright murder of the true story. (And I believe they only refer to it once- so what was the point of it?) Everyone has already mentioned Juliet's flat and unconcerned delivery of her lines- all true. Romeo's about as empty headed as he needs to be, but nowhere near as authentically emotional as he should be.
Well, I bought this to present an alternative story for my ninth graders to critique- and I'm sure they'll have their own many criticisms to share. It'll work for the purpose, so I'm not upset I bought it. But I was pretty annoyed within thirty seconds of watching it by the sacrilegious slaughter of Shakespeare's words in favor of dumbed-down nonsense.
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By LYN on February 15, 2014
Format: DVD Verified Purchase
I was excited about this movie. I wanted to love this movie. Why? Because I love Shakespeare, and because both Zeffirelli and Luhrmann's adaptations were absolutely marvelous. Also because I really like the work that Julian Fellowes has done as a scriptwriter. I should have known that when Mr. Fellowes decided to dumb down the dialogue I would hate the movie, but I wanted to see it for myself.

The photography is amazing, and the older actors do a superb job, however, after putting myself through fifty out of the 118 min of this movie, I had to stop. I can forgive the changes to the original script. I can accept that Douglas Booth was probably cast based on his looks and not his acting ability, but what I really can't forgive or understand is why Juliet sounds like she's on drugs. The deliver of her lines is all done abruptly, in a hurry, which doesn't translate into the sort of lusty hurry that Juliet should feel based on the text.

I regret having bought this, rather than renting it.
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While I appreciate the more "modern" version for today's audience with known actors, it's too bad that this story doesn't follow Shakepeare's lines accurately. My students were entertained, but we all preferred the 1968 version better, despite how old it is. It is much more authentic, and doesn't rush through the scenes. The fight in the marketplace was rushed, the Prince's speech (which is a good one), was changed, and Romeo's lines that are normally in the balcony scene, were at the party. I felt like this one was rushed...and didn't honor Shakespeare's work very well.
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Format: DVD
Who is the supposed audience for this film? Those who appreciate Shakespeare's language will be gravely disappointed with the writer's modifications, and students watching this to better understand the play will be disappointed since there are scenes and character changes that aren't true to the play's. Having taught Romeo and Juliet for over 20 years, I was hoping this version would fall somewhere between Zeffirelli's beautiful but dated take and Baz Luhrmann's over-the-top but somewhat entertaining 1990s vision. Alas, gentle reader, it falls no where near either. And that's a shame. Julian Fellowes has let his BBC acclaim clearly go to his head. It's not that he added a line here or there; it's that whole chunks of Shakespearesque dialogue is peppered throughout the story. I guess he figured two of English drama's most famous scenes--the Capulet feast and the balcony scenes--would benefit from modernization. They don't. Additionally, most of the cast, with the exception of Damian Lewis's Lord Capulet, sleep walk through their roles. Romeo's delivery is downright boring. There's no passion, no "life." When he hears of Juliet's death, he reacts as if he just found a distasteful stain on his favorite codpiece. As Juliet, Hailee Steinfeld is too American and untrained to serve the language well. I defy the director to say there weren't any strong British actresses who could have nailed this role without struggling with both accent and syllabication. Even fiery Tybalt and passionate Mercutio come across as little more than walking mannequins. Where's the ribald humor and the celebration of life necessary to provide contrast? And the Capulets and Montagues are jousting at the film's outset for what reason exactly? Benvolio chats up Rosealine, why?Read more ›
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