Introduce narrative These two titles inform the audience that the film is about two people in love who end up killing themselves. So instantly it establishes the film as a tragedy based on love. Revealing the ending to the film makes the audience feels hopeless because they canâ€™t stop the end, and intrigues them because they want to know why they take their lives and what prevents a happy ending. The representation of the narrative as writing makes it seem like a more stylized film thatâ€™s not trying to hide editing or look completely natural. It also allows the audience to read the narrative and get used to the Shakespearean language used. It is on a plain black background so that the audience isnâ€™t distracted by anything and can fully concentrate on the narrative being presented to them.
Production company The institutional logo presented is 20th Century Fox and it is presented as separate from the film. It has been shown first because it is a well known production company so the audience trusts them and they will be expecting to see a really good film. The two production companies are then shown again on a TV screen as part of the movie, this allows the second company to be introduced by 20th Century Fox, Bazmark is not as well known but because itâ€™s being introduced by a famous company the audience have no doubts that it will be a good film and their expectations remain. Showing them on the TV establishes them as part of the film itself and makes it a stylized film as it is generally unconventional to show the production companies within the film itself.
Minimal dialogue â€˜Two households, both alike in dignity, In fair Verona, where we lay our scene, From ancient grudge break to new mutiny, Where civil blood makes civil hands unclean. From forth the fatal loins of these two foes A pair of star-cross'd lovers take their life; Whose misadventured piteous overthrows Doth with their death bury their parents' strife. The fearful passage of their death-mark'd love, And the continuance of their parents' rage, Which, but their children's end, nought could remove, Is now the two hours' traffic of our stage.â€™
The only dialogue in the opening sequence is the prologue shown above, the first time it is said fully by the news reporter, and then the first half is repeated by a voiceover with videos and newspaper headlines illustrating the words. Then the third time it is shown only in writing and the whole prologue flashes very fast in time to the music. The repetition allows the audience to understand the language and what it means. This makes the opening sequence non-linear because it is more like a summary/trailer for the film allowing the audience to settle in and have a rough idea of what it going to happen.
Introduce themes/ideology There are headlines of newspapers denoted which allow the audience to connote that there is a rivalry between the two families Montague and Capulet. There are also images denoted of people running away from something and videos of riots and police. Some of the clips were filmed to look like archive footage to add to authenticity of the film. The themes introduced are that of violence, life long grudges and hatred between two families. Thereâ€™s also a theme of forbidden love as itâ€™s suggested the children from both families fall in love. The other theme is about true love being unstoppable by any forces and that only the death of close ones can make people realise and rethink how they live their life.
Introduce characters The two main characters (Romeo and Juliet) aren’t introduced which keeps the audience intrigued about who Romeo and Juliet are. However, their parents are introduced and a few other main characters, they are introduced with a clip of them from the film which stops as writing appears introducing who they are. The actors’ names are not mentioned, but only the characters’ names and who they are in relation to the story. This allow the audience to feel like they’re witnessing a real story taking place in a more stylized fashion yet still creating verisimilitude. The clips of the characters are clips that appear later on in the film so it allows the audience to identify with the characters when we see them in that scene later on. The parents are represented as being rich because of they way they are dressed and where they are, they all have serious expressions to show how they feel about the feud. The chief of police is shown with a stern look on his face to show his anger at the feud and the chaos it causes. Paris is shown smiling, he obviously doesn’t care about the feud and his suit connotes his status. Mercutio can be connoted as the strong willed character who is always trying to get Romeo to pull himself together.
Introduce setting The film was mainly filmed in Mexico however the director is keeping true to the play and through different images makes the audience believe it is set in Verona. The title ‘IN FAIR VERONA’ is shown 6 times in the opening sequence to imprint in the audience’s mind where the film is set. The place ‘Verona’ is also shown in various other places such as a police car which says ‘VERONA BEACH POLICE’ to create verisimilitude, because the setting is not only mentioned in title sequence but is also in the footage itself. Also when the newspapers are shown they are named with the word Verona in them to make them seem like authentic newspapers while also working on the audience’s subconscious by continuously showing them the word Verona.
Montage There is a really quick montage used towards the end of the sequence of lot of different clips from the film (so many that it was hard to screen grab all of them). Some of them arenâ€™t very significant to the story line but intrigue the audience because they move so fast and contain so many different scenes. They are also in time with the climax of the music, which builds anticipation and expectation from the audience. The range of scenes shows that a lot of money and effort was put into the film and that it should be really good. It also alerts the audience because they start paying more attention in order not to miss something important or interesting.
Establishing shots The establishing shots allow the audience to denote that the film is set in the modern era. It also allows them to denote that it is set in a busy city. The range of shots and the distance theyâ€™re shot at show both the budget placed towards hiring helicopters and also the quality of the cameras because in the first scene there is a zoom on Christ the Redeemer which then does a zoom out to show the top image. It allows the audience to escape and be aware that they are in fact watching a film. It communicates how much money 20th Century Fox was able to get for the film, and therefore communicates that theyâ€™re trusted to make good quality films.
Engaging music http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=IqeaJf-4bn8
The music used in the clip is O Verona by Craig Armstrong. It is very fitting for a film set in Verona, even though it’s modern it creates the feeling of being old but majestic. It creates a lot of tension during the clip until it reaches the climax where all the images flash and then it suddenly dies out. The audience begin to expect something epic to accompany the music and it gets them syched up for the film. It’s not the typical kind of music used in modern films, but it has more class and richness to it. It’s quite romantic music but it has that sad undertone to it because it’s not very upbeat and creates the perfect mood for the film, as well as establishing the genre of the film.