Romeo and Juliet: Sealed with a Kiss. Dir. Phil Nibbelink. Perf. Daniel Trippett, Tricia Trippett, and Chip Albers. 2006. DVD. Indican , 2007.
I'm sure Shakespeare Geek will be among the first to point out that he mentioned this film in 2006. He's always cutting edge, and I'm always limping along behind.
All the same, I often—eventually—get there. This time, when I got there, I found seals performing a musical version of Romeo and Juliet.
Although I want to enjoy and recommend this film unreservedly, it tends to be too sentimentalized. The clip below—the balcony scene—will give some indication of that, though it will also give a slight flavor of the comic relief into which Mercutio and Benvolio have been turned. You will also notice that the usual joke—is it a joke here?—about "wherefore" meaning "where" instead of "why" is brought up twice. Mercutio says "Wherefore art thou Romeo?" while searching for Romeo, but (to give him and the scriptwriter the benefit of the doubt), he isn't necessarily using it to mean "where." He may just be quoting a line or pondering why Romeo is behaving as he is. Later, Juliet's balcony speech is paraphrased, and she says "Where are you, my Romeo?" and Romeo responds with a prompt "I'm right here!" I think I'm right in saying that this strikes right at the nerve of a pet peeve for most Shakespearians. And it's completely unnecessary in this case! If you're paraphrasing anyway, wherefore would you not have Juliet say "Why are you Romeo?"
But that's something of a digression, and the film doesn't stand or fall on that line. Indeed, a number of moments—particularly some of the comic songs—are delightful, and, as a basic introduction to the plot of the play, Romeo and Juliet: Sealed with a Kiss isn't terrible.
As promised, here's the balcony scene. I break the clip off right before the sappy song starts but right after the visual allusion to "star-crossed lovers" lights up the sky.
Links: The Film at IMDB.
Bardfilm is normally written as one word, though it can also be found under a search for "Bard Film Blog." Bardfilm is a Shakespeare blog (admittedly, one of many Shakespeare blogs), and it is dedicated to commentary on films (Shakespeare movies, The Shakespeare Movie, Shakespeare on television, Shakespeare at the cinema), plays, and other matter related to Shakespeare (allusions to Shakespeare in pop culture, quotes from Shakespeare in popular culture, quotations that come from Shakespeare, et cetera).
Unless otherwise indicated, quotations from Shakespeare's works are from the following edition:
Shakespeare, William. The Riverside Shakespeare. 2nd ed. Gen. ed. G. Blakemore Evans. Boston: Houghton Mifflin, 1997.
All material original to this blog is copyrighted: Copyright 2008-2016 (and into perpetuity thereafter) by Keith Jones.
The very instant that I saw you did / My heart fly to your service; there resides, / To make me slave to it; and, for your sake, / Am I this patient [b]log-man.