While there have been numerous adaptations of Shakespeare’s timeless tale of forbidden love, vengeance, and tragedy, none compare to Baz Lurhmann’s modern adaptation of the play in his 1996 film, Romeo + Juliet. Starring then 21-year-old Leonardo DiCaprio and 17-year-old Claire Danes, the film is vivid, explosive, and image intensive in true Baz Luhrmann form.
Luhrmann’s kaleidoscopic film adaptation of "Romeo and Juliet" is brilliant and enrapturing; appealing to your visual senses, while Shakespearean drama, in contrast, was written to be heard as an auditory experience. DiCaprio and Danes are captivating together, speaking the verse naturally and delivering magnetic performances with their palpable chemistry. Luhrmann’s reimagining is magical and dazzling and nearly 20 years later since it’s release, Romeo + Juliet remains a masterpiece and one of my favorite films.