Daniel Kramer’s new production of Romeo & Juliet opens the Shakespeare’s Globe’s Summer of Love Season. But is it love at first sight with the critics?
The Guardian: * “Presumably the overall intention is to show juvenile passion destroyed by a violent culture but even that is undermined by the risible sight of gun-toting adults shouting “Bang! Bang!” as they fire.”
The Stage: *** “Some of Kramer’s decisions are baffling, others misfire badly, but his production is never dull.”
The Independent: *** “This is an emotionally fierce and fiery Romeo and Juliet, the raw intensity of the central story coming across all the stronger for having to burst through an atmosphere that often goes for broke on Gothic wackiness.”
The Financial Times: ** “while it’s cool to have a Romeo and Juliet for the Hunger Games generation, it’s much less cool to push it to breaking point.”
The Upcoming: ***** “The production exemplifies the brilliant work of Shakespeare’s Globe and highlights the elite professional talents of all involved.”
British Theatre.com: **** “overall, Kramer and the cast deserve praise for taking a well-trod story and giving it a fresh, interesting and exciting new slant.”
The Telegraph: ** “When it calms down, scintillas of truth and beauty do emerge, but they’re all too soon lost in the engulfing directorial egotism.”
London Theatre.co.uk: ** “Whilst it’s enjoyable to watch it quickly becomes overbearing and the continual need to play every line for laughs ultimately feels exhausting.”
Broadway World: *** “While this Romeo and Juliet is a feast for the senses, it is all style and little substance; simple, affecting emotion eclipsed by pomp and fanfare. However, in the rare moments when beauty and truth is allowed to shine through, it does so blindingly.”
Culture Whisper: *** “This Romeo and Juliet is funny enough – just not romantic or tragic enough to really satisfy.”
The Times: * “This noisy, frenetic and musically bizarre production has a singing dinosaur and grinding pole dancers, but not much Shakespeare.”
Evening Standard: ** “But the insistence on playing so many scenes for laughs means this is mostly a shallow and exhausting experience.”
Exeunt Magazine: “Kramer’s production underlines the futility present not just in the deaths of two teenagers, but in the decadence of the families’ lifestyles and the cycles of revenge they are trapped in. Turn on, tune in, drop out.”
Live Theatre UK: ** “This production clearly brings Shakespeare to a new audience and for that it should be applauded, however more heart and less grunge would make this a more enjoyable experience.”
Romeo & Juliet plays at the Shakespeare’s Globe until the 9th July.