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Romeo & Juliet (Blu Ray) [Blu-ray] [2011]

4.4 out of 5 stars 12 customer reviews

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Product details

  • Format: PAL, Blu-ray
  • Language: English
  • Subtitles: Unknown
  • Dubbed: English
  • Region: Region B/2 (Read more about DVD/Blu-ray formats.)
  • Aspect Ratio: 16:9 - 1.78:1
  • Number of discs: 1
  • Classification: Exempt
  • Studio: CLASSICAL
  • DVD Release Date: 25 Oct. 2010
  • Run Time: 149 minutes
  • Average Customer Review: 4.4 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (12 customer reviews)
  • ASIN: B002HTWC12
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 83,748 in DVD & Blu-ray (See Top 100 in DVD & Blu-ray)

Product Description

Product Description

Choreographed by Rudolf Nureyev, this stunning Paris Opera Ballet production was performed at the Opera Bastille. The exceptional cast was chosen by Nureyev himself, and stars Manuel Legris and Monique Loudieres. Charles Jade is Tybalt, and Lionel Delanoe is Mercutio. Vello Pahn conducts the Orchestre de L'Opéra National De Paris.
This is a blu-ray presentation of the 1995 performance of Romeo & Juliet, by the Paris Opera Ballet.

From Amazon.co.uk

The combination of Prokofiev's masterful score with Nureyev's choreography for the ballet company of the Paris Opera could hardly make this Romeo and Juliet anything but a success. However, as it's Nureyev, God is in the detail, and while the sheer exuberance of Manuel Legris and Monique Loudieres in the leading roles is undeniable, it's the little things that count, such as Romeo's shyness as he shuffles from one foot to another in the presence of the object of his affections (it's one thing to do dying swans and amorous raptures, but not everyone can effectively choreograph a fidget). The production is visually stunning, although there's an am-dram overstatedness to the glary lighting thatcan take one aback somewhat. What's very good indeed, however, is the presence of surround and stereo audio options and a multi-angle option, which are all too often omitted altogether from dance DVDs. The booklet notes are detailed but unfussy.--Roger Thomas --This text refers to the DVD edition.

Customer Reviews

4.4 out of 5 stars
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Top Customer Reviews

Format: DVD Verified Purchase
To set the record straight, one of the previous reviewers claims that this is a documentary and warns potential buyers against purchasing it. He is obviously confused. There is indeed a documentary about this production, but not on this disc. This contains a performance of the ballet, as staged by Rudolf Nureyev for the Paris Opera.
Nureyev who, if I recall correctly, was the first to dance Macmillan's Romeo in the 1960s, offers us here his own concept of the work (NOTE: his participation here is only as a choreographer and producer. He did not dance this version and by the time this particular performance was filmed, he had passed on.)
Comparisons with the Macmillan version are inevitable. On the plus side for Nureyev, there is an attempt to follow more closely Shakespeare's plot, which explains both how Romeo hears of Juliet's death and why he is not warned of what has actually taken place. (In Macmillan, the exiled Romeo appears suddenly and unexpectedly in the tomb.) The scene with the Friar's murder was hurried and seemed tacked-on, whereas the scene in which Benvolio informs Romeo of Juliet's death was beautifully conceived and executed (Romeo dreams of Juliet embracing him and wakes up in his friend's arms instead.) All in all, though, -despite the excellent dancing opportunities afforded,- I found the choreography not as emotionally charged as Macmillan's.
Another minus for me were Nureyev's attempts at symbolic gestures. The Priest that marries the couple, for example, holds a bouquet of flowers in one hand and a human skull in the other! (How subtle is this?) In another scene, Romeo offers money to a young beggar, who (inexplicably) drops dead almost as soon as he touches his fingers.
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Comment 14 of 14 people found this helpful. Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
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Format: DVD
In many ways ballet works better than live opera on DVD because you don't have to put up with the vagaries of stage micing. The sound here is stunning to match the wonderful Paris Opera Orchestra who sound utterly inside the love music, although the tempo for the music portraying Juliet as a young girl is rather slow. The production is truly epic in scale with wonderful dancing and real depth of emotion. When Juliet hears of Tybalts death, Nureyev's choreography has Monique Loudieres performing strange contortions that are absolutely heart rending. The final scene leaves me absolutely drained every time I see it. Unfogettable.
Comment 33 of 34 people found this helpful. Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
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By Amazon Customer TOP 1000 REVIEWER on 9 Nov. 2010
Format: Blu-ray
Nureyev created the role of Romeo with Fonteyn as Juliet in 1965, and subsequently created his own choreography culminating in this superbly mounted and danced 1995 production by the Paris Opera Ballet.

I am not familiar with the original version but this Nureyev creation is remarkable incorporating acting and characterisation within the ballet, all the main characters seem real believable people.

There is a fascinating contrast between the stark white geometric lines of the Opera Bastille auditorium and the sumptuous stage set of towering buildings surrounding the square, buildings resplendent with intricate baroque? ornamentation. The costumes are equally gorgeous.

The acoustics are excellent and every detail of Prokofiev's wonderful score is transparently projected, and well played by Orchestre de L'opera Paris under Vello Pahn.

Although recorded at a live performance in 1995 (presented in 16:9 widescreen format) the video quality is extremely good, obviously not true HD but it does not disappoint.

This is one of those occasions when everything succeeds creating a marvellous whole, destined to become one of my all time favourite ballet performances.
2 Comments 7 of 7 people found this helpful. Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
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Format: DVD
Of course there is the full-length ballet on this DVD, together with a stunning orchestral score which would stand alone (although I agree that some of the passages seemed rather funereal in tempo - and I don't mean the actual funeral scenes!)
The choreography and dancing are superb, and I found myself longing to be in the theatre experiencing this for myself. I suppose this feeling is inevitable when watching one of the 'live arts' in recorded format. But my frustration was increased by some incredibly insensitive editing.
Worst of all were the totally unnecessary cuts to close-ups of scenery, presumably to cover awkwardly long scene changes. Personally I would rather look at the curtain, or an empty stage, with possibly a glance at the orchestra; this, after all, is what you would do if you were in the theatre. But to have one's vision restricted to a dark doorway or gargoyle, while the music (and the ballet) are clearly continuing is deeply frustrating and terribly clumsy. The producers should have decided instead to make it as close to the live experience as possible, including pauses and scene changes if necessary.
And having spent the whole production sensibly avoiding close-ups, why send the camera zooming in 'dead' bodies throughout the final scenes? We all know they are actually rather exhausted dancers and therefore will be breathing! It seems utterly pointless to shatter the suspension of disbelief in this way. After all, what is there to move you in 'Romeo & Juliet' if you don't believe in a part of your emotional being that they are dead at the end?
I'm afraid these clanking faults ruined the experience for me. Although I am glad to have seen this marvellous production (including several astonishing lead performances and some sublime choreography), I would not choose to watch it again in this format.
1 Comment 16 of 18 people found this helpful. Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
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