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Romeo and Juliet
The new “Romeo and Juliet” is an interminable, unintentionally hilarious misfire, apparently aimed at a youth audience weaned on “Gossip Girl.” (One of the stars of that show, Ed Westwick, appears as a frothingly intense Tybalt.) Romeo (Douglas Booth) is introduced with a heaving close-up emphasizing his bare chest and sensitive features; Juliet — Hailee Steinfeld, so good in “True Grit,” so bad here — turns her lines into iambic mush.
The screenplay by Julian Fellowes (“Downton Abbey”) script cuts much of the Bard and adds insipid new dialogue, and the actors with actual talent (Damien Lewis, Paul Giamatti) ham it up helplessly. It’s a movie that only a 13-year-old girl with an English paper due could love. And she’d still get a D.