30 Days of Film: Bel's day 3

| Posted by Bel | The time is 11.32am here in Wellington NZ |

A film that makes you really happy

I recently re-watched Baz Luhrmann's Romeo + Juliet. Yes, I realise this film doesn't have (SPOILER!!) a happy ending, but I enjoyed watching it so much.

When this film came out in 1996, I was pretty much the same age that Shakespeare first intended his heroine to be. And I was just as malleable, impetuous and giddy as your average young teen - be she living in Verona, Verona Beach or small town NZ.

Re-watching the film was such a pleasure. It was slightly worrying how much of the script was sitting verbatim in my head after so many years. And not just the Shakespearean quotations, but the specific delivery and intonations by this version's actors.

Miriam Margolyes tottering about as the Nurse, crying out "Hhhhhuuulieet!".

Claire Danes actually managing to make the "wherefore" in "Wherefore art thou Romeo?" like a "why" and not a "where".

The police chief Prince growling out "All... are... BANISH-ED!!" in the final scenes.

And, of course, Leo doing the same donkey-like gasping bray of a cry you can trace back to The Basketball Diaries and even saw recently in Shutter Island.

It can be a dangerous territory, going back and re-watching the films that influenced those tender years. And yet so many favourites from the 90s are still standing strong: Clueless, 10 Things I Hate About You, Mallrats, Wayne's World.

Any word on Heathers? Can't Hardly Wait? Empire Records? Have you re-watched something lately and found it just made you so so happy, regardless of the content?

6 thoughts on “30 Days of Film: Bel's day 3”

  1. Heathers continues to be brilliant. And scarily - the clothes are back in fashion. Empire Records was never actually very good, it's time we all admit that.

  2. Yet infintaly quotable: "What's with today today?" summed up so much of my teenage life and "Sinead O'Rebellion" was perfect shorthand :D

    I had a friend who looooved R+J and used to stop the film (VHS copy, I imagine) each time just before things turned to shit - ensuring a shorter, but actually happy, viewing experience.

  3. I bought Heathers last year and yes it definitely stood up! In fact, I wonder if I more appreciated it now. The other two you name were never particularly special to me (think my extra two years of age tipped me into being perhaps in uni when they came out rather than high school?).

    10 Things remains my fave of the teen films - I could watch that over and over. (In fact, I have.)

    The true test of a films watchability is if when you flick channels and stumble upon it you keep watching avec ad-breaks even though you have the DVD and have seen it 7,000 times.

  4. 10 Things I Hate About You, oh em gee. Re-watched recently and got so defensive trying to explain to someone why it makes me so happy. It was the first time I'd seen in in years and years, and it took me right back to when I first saw it at a sleepover where everyone else was more interested in watching Scream version whatever and I was the only one who had enjoyed watching 10 Things.

    "I guess in this society, being male and an asshole makes you worthy of our time. "