I Believe the Children are the Future…

2 Jan

My humble opinion: children, pre-teens, tweens, so on? They should read the Classics. Literature. Teachers should insist on it.

A particular memory tickles me to this day. My sis and I were sitting in a movie theater years ago, waiting to see Baz Luhrmann’s “Romeo + Juliet.” Behind us, we caught the following conversation which, in all honesty, actually happened:

Girl 1: Somebody told me that he dies at the end!
Girl 2: Are you serious? He dies?
Girl 1: That’s what I heard.

Needless to say, my sis and I could not contain our endless laughter. It was hilarious and terrifying. Had these girls never heard of Romeo and Juliet? Were they not aware that not only does “he” die, but she, as well? Or was this solely a DiCaprio thing, that of simply coming to the movies to ogle and swoon at Mr. Popularity of That Time? We didn’t know. All we knew was that their breathless, concerned conversation had actually taken place.

The point: children, pre-teens, tweens, so on? They should read the Classics. Literature. Teachers should insist on it. (Although, being that every English class since the beginning of time has likely read that play, those girls might have been absent from class on that particular day. Yes. Absent. That’s it). That way, if Hollywood takes it upon itself to make a film about a famous Shakespearean play, those girls can enter the movie theater with pride–well aware that yes, he most certainly dies in the end. Well, that he should die, if they stick to the original story. Of which they rarely do.

Um, Movie Girls? Just read, OK? Just read.

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2 Responses to “I Believe the Children are the Future…”

  1. Lynn January 3, 2008 at 7:37 pm #

    The only Shakespearean plays that I read in school were “The Tragedy of Julius Caesar” and “A Midsummer Night’s Dream”. I tragically (ha!) never read “Romeo and Juliet” and the most I knew about it was that it was about a guy and a girl that were in love. So my first experience of the story was Baz Luhrman’s take on the movie. And since I don’t like to know the endings of movies, I was shocked, SHOCKED at the ending. So heartbreaking! Well, at least at the time.I laugh now that it surprised me so much. At the time, it didn’t even phase me that I didn’t know about the story beforehand and I should have. Now that I look back, you are right; people need to read more of the classics. And if not read them, at least know the gist of the story.

  2. GirleyGirl January 7, 2008 at 3:44 pm #

    Hey, it WAS a heartbreaking ending!Admittedly, I did hope that they’d give us a Hollywood ending and have them run away together or something), so I totally understand.I think what tickled us was the wide-eyed terror of those girls. As if it was Leo himself taking his last breath. 🙂

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