Comparing Romeo and Juliet and Shakespeare in Love

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William Shakespeare was a famous playwright whose work on Romeo and Juliet is as alive today as it was when he had first written it. This piece is alive today in two movie forms made in the 1990's, William Shakespeare's Romeo and Juliet and Shakespeare in Love, as well as the original text form. These two movies are great for understanding the play and also for understanding a little of where Shakespeare got most of the ideas for this play. Romeo and Juliet is a tragedy of two "star-crossed" lovers that are son and daughter of two quarreling families in Verona, The Montagues and the Capulets. These two lovers fall for each other at a party in the Capulet's mansion where Romeo, a Montague, is not even supposed to be. After Tybalt, Juliet's cousin and leader of the Capulet hatred, learns of the marriage of Romeo and Juliet, he goes looking for Romeo and ends up killing Mercutio, Romeo's friend, in a duel while Romeo is trying to break it up. In anger of his friend's death, Romeo kills Tybalt and is then banished from Verona by the prince. Juliet is then ordered by her parents to marry a young man named Paris. She does not want to be wed with him, so she heads off to the friar's quarters where she is supposed to be making confession. Instead, she gets a potion that is supposed to remove all vital signs in which she can stage her death and run off to find Romeo in Mantua. When Romeo learns of Juliet's death he has no idea of what her plans were to be because his message did not get to him as a result of a plague. (This plague was foreshadowed by Mercutio just before he dies in act two scene, "A plague a both your houses! [II,I,108]" He then buys some poison with the idea in mind that he is to go to Juliet's tomb and rest in peace with her. He gets to the tomb and is encountered with an enraged Paris, who forces Romeo into a duel in which Paris dies. Romeo takes the poison and Juliet wakes up soon after to find out that her husband has killed himself. She then takes his dagger and kills herself. The town then learns the nature of the two deaths and the Montagues and Capulets realize that hatred is stupid.
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