Author Topic: "Were The World Mine" meets "Jarhead"? "Private Romeo" directed by Alan Brown  (Read 5931 times)

Offline Aloysius J. Gleek

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"When eight cadets are left behind at an isolated military high school, the greatest romantic drama ever written seeps out of the classroom and permeates their lives. Incorporating the original text of 'Romeo and Juliet,' YouTube videos, and lip-synced Indie rock music, Private Romeo takes us to a mysterious and tender place that only Shakespeare could have inspired."

Adapted and Directed by Alan Brown.


[youtube=425,350]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ajExqERK0p8[/youtube]















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Offline Aloysius J. Gleek

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Behind the Scenes on the feature film
PRIVATE ROMEO
A film by Alan Brown
[youtube=425,350]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=kgNn0N6v9fg&feature=related[/youtube]
Uploaded by privateromeomovie on Jan 30, 2011



[youtube=425,350]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=E4jQnV-o_0U&feature=related[/youtube]
Uploaded by privateromeomovie on Feb 12, 2011



[youtube=425,350]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Z36G3Grrf24[/youtube]
Uploaded by privateromeomovie on Jan 30, 2011


"Tu doives entendre je t'aime."
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Cowboy Curtis (Laurence Fishburne)
and Pee-wee in the 1990 episode
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Offline Aloysius J. Gleek

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http://www.villagevoice.com/2012-02-08/film/private-romeo-film-review/



Private Romeo
By Aaron Hillis
Wednesday, Feb 8 2012





Although there was a time when only men were allowed to perform Shakespeare, writer-director Alan Brown's queer, all-male riff on Romeo and Juliet  overconfidently shoehorns the star-crossed romance into a pandering coming-of-ager about sexual identity and equality. Transposed to a modern military academy where eight isolated cadets snicker their way through a study of the Bard's tragedy, Private Romeo  tracks the budding affair between Sam (Seth Numrich as Romeo) and Glenn (Matt Doyle as the other Romeo).

Gone are the family blood feuds, leaving just intolerance toward gays—in the guise of the co-conspiring friar and nurse—as a dramatic obstacle. Outside of the classroom, the boys continue speaking in Elizabethan dialect, heretically enunciated for horny double entendres ("The prick of noon"; "Make it a word and a blow") and frustratingly combined with contemporary asides ("Yo, you up for some hoops later?").

The hunky ensemble shares a fine chemistry, but Brown's stylistic choices lie somewhere between perverse and nonsensical. If Baz Luhrmann made his MTV-ready adaptation today, maybe he, too, would arbitrarily add YouTube lip-synching to Bishop Allen songs, but at least his desecration of the timeless source material would entertain.



Private Romeo
Directed by Alan Brown
Opens February 10, Cinema Village


"Tu doives entendre je t'aime."
(and you know who I am...)


Cowboy Curtis (Laurence Fishburne)
and Pee-wee in the 1990 episode
"Camping Out"

Offline Aloysius J. Gleek

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“Did my heart love till now?
 Forswear it, sight!
 For I ne’er saw true beauty till this night!”





http://www.observer.com/2012/02/private-romeo-and-juliet-rex-reed-seth-numrich/

movies
Private Romeo:
Every Soldier is a Lover

In turn toward traditional Shakespearean casting, Romeo and Juliet played by
all-male ensemble. But no cross-gender roles here. Hooah!


By Rex Reed
2/08 10:11am



O Romeo, Romeo, wherefore art thou, Private Romeo?


From a World War II Macbeth  in an Alan Ladd trench coat to a drug-dealing Shylock in an all-black Merchant of Venice  set in Harlem, Shakespeare has been boldly “opened up” before. (A rock ’n’ roll Hamlet, anyone?) But a gay Romeo and Juliet,  both played by military school cadets on their way to West Point, is a new one on me. It’s Private Romeo, a brave, controversial, not always successful, but hugely adventurous and highly liberated movie that offers a fresh take on the Bard in the age of same-sex marriage. Like it or not, you will not go away yawning.
 
When most of the students at the McKinley Military Academy go away for four days on a supervised land navigation exercise, the eight cadets who remain behind with no officers or faculty on campus are ordered to follow their usual classwork, homework and physical fitness routines. But as the English lit class studying Romeo and Juliet falls under the spell of the most romantic love story ever written, the two classmates reading the leads begin to take the Bard too seriously and live their roles as star-crossed lovers for real. Utilizing the actual text in a scaled-down version of the play’s tumult, writer-director Alan Brown embellishes old-world romance with modern concepts like YouTube videos and indie-rock tunes to broaden a young audience’s exposure to Shakespeare and provide fans of all ages with a fresh new way of looking at an old classic.
 
Instead of Verona, you get the gym, mess hall and dorm rooms of a military campus. Instead of class wars and family feuds, young plebes worry about demerits and falling in love. Between reveille and taps, they shower and drill and horse around, giggling at the flowery dialogue while nervously trying to ignore the impact it is having on their lives. The poetic exchange between Mercutio and Romeo, touching and groping each other in their tight shorts—“‘You are a lover. Borrow Cupid’s wings and soar with them …’ / ‘I am too sore piercèd with his shaft / To soar … / Under love’s heavy burden do I sink’”—becomes a new homoerotic double entendre. Spotting another lonely cadet in gym shorts sipping a beer, Romeo swoons: “Did my heart love till now? Forswear it, sight! For I ne’er saw true beauty till this night!” It’s the cry of a boy on the verge of risking his popularity to come out of the closet. The director takes the same words Shakespeare wrote to convey a different kind of love story between men. Mercutio is now a jealous lover scorned. The death of Tybalt has been moved to a basketball court. Romeo’s lusty “What light through yonder window breaks?” is now addressed to the beam of a flashlight that lures him to Juliet’s dorm room after curfew. “Parting is such sweet sorrow” becomes a plaintive sigh between two horny guys whose kisses are interrupted by an impatient upperclassman before their passion is consummated. Every “prick” and “pump” has a hidden emphasis, as it did in Shakespeare’s day, when men played all of the women on stage.
 
If this is beginning to sound like a desperate overreach for the sake of shock value, I hasten to add that it is all performed with great taste and respect for the text. The big sex scene is a model of discretion. There was more nudity in the glossy Franco Zeffirelli version. But the acting, by a uniformly polished cast of terrific New York actors destined for huge things, is sincere enough to convince the most cynical skeptic. Seth Numrich, the marvelous young actor from the Lincoln Center production of War Horse,  is a galvanizing Private Sam Singleton (a.k.a. Private Romeo), and Matt Doyle, as cadet Glenn Mangan, the hopelessly smitten lover who follows him to the altar, makes for a perfect pink-nippled, gooey-eyed Juliet. What Mr. Doyle does not do is sing with the same charm and precision that is on view in his acting. I am appalled the director ends it all with Juliet singing an out-of-tune pop-rock version of “You Made Me Love You” that reduces the final touching moments to unnecessary camp when none had gone before.
 
The entire supporting cast is flawless, especially Hale Appleman as a majestically duplicitous Mercutio (a.k.a. Private Josh Neff). The meticulous locations (SUNY Maritime College in the Bronx, a high school in Mineola and Sarah Lawrence College) lend an authenticity no soundstages could suggest. And I respect the way the cadets guide us into a world of tenderness without a trace of homophobia, opening the grace of Shakespeare’s poetry to other interpretations beyond the traditional one. Here, love is blind, as it is today among the young. Reshaping the narrative into a 90-minute narrative, the Capulet-Montague feud is no longer clear. Mercutio lives, and so do the lovers. Love is all, as it is in As You Like It and other Shakespearean plays that erode the barriers of gender identity. No contemporary film that promotes love instead of war should be overlooked. Private Romeo will undoubtedly be regarded by some as a curio, but it’s a sweet, sympathetic and surprising one, highly recommended to the adventurous spirit in an enlightened and changing world.
 
[email protected]
 
PRIVATE ROMEO
Running Time 98 minutes
Written and Directed by Alan Brown
Starring Hale Appleman, Seth Numrich and Matt Doyle



"Tu doives entendre je t'aime."
(and you know who I am...)


Cowboy Curtis (Laurence Fishburne)
and Pee-wee in the 1990 episode
"Camping Out"

Offline Aloysius J. Gleek

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http://www.out.com/entertainment/theater/2011/04/03/need-know-matt-doyle-seth-numrich



Need To Know:
Matt Doyle & Seth Numrich

After turning the most famous love story ever told on its head,
the actors can't seem to quit each other


By Phillip B. Crook
4.3.2011





How, on a sweltering day in July, in a tiny, air conditioner-less dorm room, before 14 onlookers, do two relative strangers conjure any sort of intimacy? 'It could have been an awkward situation, but it never was,' says Matt Doyle, describing a sensual scene he shot last year with his cast mate Seth Numrich for the upcoming film Private Romeo.  By then, both actors had already cut their teeth in sexually charged projects, Numrich with an Off-Broadway turn as a gay teen in Slipping  and Doyle with his role as gay heartbreaker Jonathan Whitney on Gossip Girl. They say leaping into a full-on love scene on day two of filming just felt like another day's work. 'You have to let go of all of your boundaries,' Doyle says.
 
Casting inhibitions aside seems almost necessary when you're faced with the challenge of playing the most famous couple of all time. Private Romeo,  hitting the festival circuit this spring, is a reimagining of Shakespeare's Romeo and Juliet.  In this version, though, the star-crossed lovers are 16-year-old military school cadets Sam (Numrich, right) and Glenn (Doyle, left), and instead of two feuding houses, a group of eight friends divides over the intense infatuation between the boys. Though Numrich is straight and Doyle gay, Numrich says there was chemistry between them almost instantly. 'We auditioned together, so we'd kissed each other before we'd even exchanged names,' he says. 'It forces you to break the ice. There was never hesitation, and that's what's required to build a relationship onscreen.'
 
It's no surprise that relationship has extended off screen as well, considering the actors have spent nearly every day together for the past three months. In addition to Private Romeo,  which they finished shooting last summer, the pair will appear in the much-buzzed-about Broadway play War Horse,  a dazzling, effects-heavy adaptation of Michael Morpurgo's 1982 young adult novel set in World War I. A transplant from London's West End, the show has already generated a following that includes Steven Spielberg, whose movie version of the story hits theaters in December. Numrich and Doyle play cousins in the production, and Doyle also understudies for Numrich for the lead role of Albert.

After turning the most famous love story ever told on its head, the actors can't seem to quit each other

Private Romeo  director Alan Brown recalls how the pair arrived at a dinner party in January and spent most of the evening oblivious to the rest of room. 'We all laughed because they're in rehearsals 10 hours a day together, six days a week, and they were still talking mostly to each other,' Brown says. 'They auditioned for War Horse  while we were still shooting, so I hold myself responsible.'
 
Brown's original script for Private Romeo  called for a larger cast with more adult roles, but the film's budget forced him to pare it down to just eight 20-something actors -- a decision he's ultimately happy with because the smaller ensemble aligned his vision with the Shakespeare text perfectly. 'My first idea was to place it in a barracks, but then I thought, Romeo and Juliet really have to be young. The whole idea is that they're foolish youth.' He chose to revisit the play when he was fighting to overturn 'don't ask, don't tell' and says that although Private Romeo  contains no references to the bill, his decision to cast two men as the leads was 'very political.'
 
From the grueling routine of daily drills to stolen moments in shadowy hallways, Private Romeo 's isolated, martial backdrop is a pressure cooker complete with homophobia and hazing rituals. But even with strong themes typical of the gay film genre, Brown insists there would be no Private Romeo  without Doyle and Numrich. 'Matt was at the callbacks for six hours,' he remembers. 'We kept mixing and matching him with people. But when Seth came in, I don't think we read him for anything but Romeo. I put him and Matt together, and there wasn't a question.'

 
War Horse  opens April 14 2011 at New York City's Vivian Beaumont Theater. For more information and the trailer of Private Romeo,  which opens in theaters Feb. 10 2012, click here.

« Last Edit: February 18, 2012, 10:30:58 pm by Aloysius J. Gleek »
"Tu doives entendre je t'aime."
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Cowboy Curtis (Laurence Fishburne)
and Pee-wee in the 1990 episode
"Camping Out"

Offline Aloysius J. Gleek

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[youtube=425,350]http://www.youtube.com/watch?feature=player_embedded&v=6NXGfp3-Nuk[/youtube]
Uploaded by mccann76 on Jul 15, 2011



"Tu doives entendre je t'aime."
(and you know who I am...)


Cowboy Curtis (Laurence Fishburne)
and Pee-wee in the 1990 episode
"Camping Out"

Offline Aloysius J. Gleek

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Matt Doyle and Seth Numrich portray rivalrous cousins who vie for ownership of
hero horse Joey in Warhorse  and Shakespearean lovers in the new film Private Romeo


"Tu doives entendre je t'aime."
(and you know who I am...)


Cowboy Curtis (Laurence Fishburne)
and Pee-wee in the 1990 episode
"Camping Out"

Offline Aloysius J. Gleek

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I went and saw Private Romeo  today, and I thought it was terrific--the actors especially, they were wonderful.

Very worthwhile!

 :D :) ;) 8)


"Tu doives entendre je t'aime."
(and you know who I am...)


Cowboy Curtis (Laurence Fishburne)
and Pee-wee in the 1990 episode
"Camping Out"