March 7, 2010 at 11:36 am (Film Adaptations, Romeo and Juliet) (, , , , , , , , )

Like soccer? Like Shakespeare? Well, then I have the movie for you. (Nan!) Added benefit if you speak Portuguese and like Brazilian soccer. Okay, that’s narrowing it down a bit more than it needs to be. I don’t care about soccer and don’t know much about Brazil, and I still enjoyed this.

The English title is Romeo and Juliet Get Married (in Portuguese with English subtitles, available on Netflix). The Brazilian title is O Casamento de Romeu e Julieta.

It’s not very Shakespearean, but it’s mindless, watchable entertainment. The set up is two families who have bred generations of rabid fans for different soccer teams (Palmeiras for Juliet’s family and Corinthians for Romeo’s family). Name the lovebirds Romeo and Juliet and call them “star-crossed lovers” and you pretty much summarize the Shakespearean aspect of the film.

That’s not quite true. There is sort of a balcony scene (sort of) where the two families confront each other in the lot below Romeo’s apartment. Romeo looks up to see Juliet on the balcony, and they share a loving smile. I guess that’s sort of Shakespearean.

And then when they get married, the priest reads from the R&J prologue (“Two households, both alike in dignity…”).

And I read a review on Netflix that if you speak Portuguese, there are funny puns that don’t come through in the English translation. So, there’s wordplay.

And Juliet’s dad in this movie has some of the same qualities as Capulet… the hot temper, the willingness to disown his daughter.

But I’m really stretching to find Shakespearean parallels here. This movie is sporty fluff. A soccer-crazy rom-com, and that’s all. Go into it with the right attitude and I think you’ll enjoy it. (Nan!)

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