Baz Luhrmann is an Australian film director who got his start in acting. However, his claim to fame was through his directing—his unique style of telling grandiose stories set in the past while also blending in some modernizations make him one of the most unique and remarkable filmmakers we have today. Below are three of his most notable films.
The classic play is given a modern twist in this film, although still maintaining most of its original dialogue. Because it is quite strange, hearing people speak in Shakespearean in a modern-day setting, there were lots of mixed reactions with the movie: with some saying it’s innovative and others saying it’s a mess. Despite the absurdity of the film’s premise, it still captures the essence and spirit of the original play. Plus, the performances of Leonardo DiCaprio and Claire Danes make it really difficult to completely dislike this movie. This unique and audacious movie truly deserves its cult classic status.
Unlike Romeo + Juliet, this film is actually set in the time it is supposed to be set in, the Bohemian revolution in Paris in 1899. It’s a vibrant, sensual, and dazzling musical about two star-crossed lovers infused with music from contemporary times, including renditions of popular songs like “Lady Marmalade” by Labelle. That seems to be Baz Luhrmann’s style, if you’ll notice, using pop music in a time when pop music isn’t traditionally appropriate, but he just makes it work. Filled with an extravagant production and the soundtrack to match, this love story is an exciting whirlwind to watch, and it definitely deserves the many accolades it has received.
Luhrmann’s most recent film is another adaptation of a classic, again starring Leo DiCaprio. It shows all the extravagance that Gatsby’s parties would have actually been and the crippling problems that shook America in the 20’s, but with a little modernization, particularly in the soundtrack—as is the norm for Luhrmann’s movies. It’s produced by the king of rap himself, Jay-Z. I know it sounds absurd—mixing hip-hop and jazz? But honestly the result is just so fantastic. And come on, a soundtrack including the likes of Beyoncé, Lana Del Rey, Fergie, and many more is one that’s hard to ignore.
With this amazing filmography, Baz Luhrmann surely proves to be one of the most creative directors of this generation. His style of huge, extravagantly produced movies with modern pop soundtracks is truly unique and distinctive in every way. Whatever kind of movie he decides to make next, I’m sure it’ll be as bold and brilliant as the three mentioned above.
All photos are from IMDb