BY ISA MONTAGNESE
What it’s about: This version of the classic Shakespeare play is set in modern times but keeps all (or most) of the original dialogue in that old-timey style.
Who’s in it: Claire Danes, Leonardo DiCaprio, John Leguizamo, Harold Perrineau, Paul Rudd (I know!)
When it came out: 1996
How come you haven’t heard of it (or just seen) it: You might have avoided it because it’s been pegged as a teen drama that only appeals to kids born in the 2000s who think the 90s are retro. Sigh.
Why you need to watch it–immediately!
- LEO! Oh my teenage heart skipped a beat every time I watched that unbuttoned Hawaiian shirt fluttering in the wind.
- Claire Danes being a perfect angel and John Leguizamo as the perfect villain.
- The style! Set in Venice Beach with muggy, hot, trashy style, rundown carnival sets and dollar store religious trinkets, this version is all trend. Baz Luhrmann’s hyperactive, super colourful version is all sex and trash in the best way.
- The music! A mix of 90s angst, disco covers, Prince covers with a choir, electro and latin dance.
- Oh the drama! Though this version has a lot more guns than swords, there is just as much “why me?!” yelling and crying.