The famous play Romeo and Juliet, written by William Shakespeare, is the tale of two star-crossed lovers. Romeo, the only heir of Montague, falls in love with Juliet, the heiress of Capulet, but their love is forbidden due to a rivalry between houses resulting in a double suicide. Two adaptations of William Shakespeare’s Romeo and Juliet are Asbury’s Gnomeo and Juliet (2011), portrayed as humorous through various film techniques, and Luhrmann’s Romeo and Juliet (1996), portrayed as a tragedy through similar film techniques. This will be shown through the use of film techniques like language, camera angles and mise-en-scene. Fristly, language features are used by both Luhrmann’s version of Romeo and Juliet and Asbury’s version of Gnomeo and Juliet. In Luhrmann’s Romeo and Juliet language features such as similes are being used in the meeting scene. Romeo is comparing Juliet to a saint and himself to a pilgrim. He is saying that as it’s a long last, when he finally found the object of his reverence. Romeo takes her hands, and offered to kiss away and damage he might of has caused or may have been committed in the process.
This is evident when Romeo states, “If I profane with my unworthiest hand this holy shrine, the gentle sin is this: My lips, two blushing pilgrims, ready to stand to smooth that rough touch with a tender kiss.” Luhrmann’s version of Romeo and Juliet uses language to creates the feel of Romeo and Juliet falling in love with each other before they find out who they really are. The heartbreak and knowing that both parents won’t allow them together is tragic. In Asbury’s Gnomeo and Juliet play on words are used all throughout the film. In the meeting scene Gnomeo and Juliet are mucking around with each other as they both want the flower. As Juliet gets the flower from Gnomeo she states, “Who’s your Gnomeo now?” This used for when Juliet steals the Orchid from Gnomeo as they are play around with each other.
This leads to Juliet flirting with Gnomeo as she develops feelings for him this creates a feel of happiness and cheerful between the character and the audience. The different language features that have been used in both films shows that the two have both constructed two different versions of William Shakespeare Romeo and Juliet. Secondly, the use of camera angles are used in Luhrmann’s Romeo and Juliet to show the tragic and emotion effect the film has on the audience. In Asbury’s Gnomeo and Juliet the camera angle creates a romantic and humorous. This is shown in Luhrmann’s version through the low angle when Romeo and Juliet meet and realise who they actually are. The low angle is for Romeo when he runs after Juliet to see where she is going then finds her with her mother Mrs Capulet. The camera angle captures the Romeo’s facial expression, his confusion that his one true love is his family emery and now Romeo doesn’t understand why someone so prefect in his eyes could be his family worst emery of them all.
In the Asbury’s version of Gnomeo and Juliet the camera angles are used to show that the film is humorous. The camera angle that has been used in the meeting scene Gnomeo and Juliet is an eye level angle; this is shown when Gnomeo and Juliet climbing up the glasshouse and when they both reach for the Orchid. The purpose behind using eye level angle is used to create the scene romantic when they touch for the first time. The camera angle is used to make the audience think that the two are in love and they are meant to be together forever right then and here. Camera angles are used in Luhrmann’s Romeo and Juliet to show the tragedy. The camera angles are used in Asbury’s Gnomeo and Juliet to show the humorous through the camera angles as Gnomeo and Juliet. In addition, the use of mise-en-scene things such as props, costumes, lighting, facial expressions and placement are used throughout both films. Luhrmann’s version of Romeo and Juliet the costumes played a big part in the meeting scene. In the scene Romeo is dressed up as a knight and Juliet is dressed up as an angel. Romeo see’s Juliet for what she really is, an angel in his eyes.