Compare and Contrast Different Romeo and Juliet Texts

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Year 9 English Speech... lol

In Luhrmann’s film, set in the 20th century, the costuming, decorations and lighting are flamboyant and colourful, giving a lively and entertaining feel to the party; Romeo is dressed symbolically as a knight in shining armour to show that he will rescue Juliet. Luhrmann uses this to emphasise Romeo’s youth and enthusiasm. Juliet is represented as an angel in white to show her purity and to foreshadow her imminent death. Paris is dressed as an astronaut to show that he is out of this world and too good to be true. Mercutio cross-dresses as a woman being both man and women representing that he is not on either side of the feud. Tybalt is all fired up dressed as the devil with horns to portray the hatred he feels towards the Montagues. His henchmen stand on either side of him wearing skeleton costumes which foreshadow death in the play. Behind them is a picture of Christ on the cross contrasting good and evil. In contrast, in Zeffirelli’s more traditional version set in the 17th century, the costuming and decorations are more dull and formal, giving a serious feel to the party and a more subtle effect. The room is lit up by candles giving a dull feel to the room. Unlike Luhrmann’s version, not everyone is in a fancy dress costume and the Capulets are in different colours to the Montagues, but the men are in tights and women are in gowns. Even the way of dancing is more formal as it is very slow and controlled in contrast to Luhrmann’s film.

The music in Luhrmann’s version is fast and exhilarating, while the music in Zeffirelli’s version is very slow and calm. The song “Young Hearts Run Free” is the main song used in Luhrmann’s version while the song “What is a youth” is the main song used in Zeffirelli’s version. The lyrics of the song “What is a youth” show the hastiness of youth’s love and foreshadows the death of Romeo and Juliet with “A rose will bloom. It then will fade. So does a youth. So does the fairest maid” and...
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