Luhrmann uses water as a representation of love. The water is a recurring image and representation of baptism and rebirth. It symbolizes the start of a new life together and cleansing. Romeo and Juliet’s first encounter incorporates water as the two lovers gaze at each other through a fish tank which serves as a physical barrier between the two lovers, even though there are also a lot of emotional barriers. Romeo later submerges his head under water in an attempt to return to his usual self after being dazed from the drug and the free, flowing nature of water cleanses his mind.
For Romeo and Juliet the pool serves as a medium that distances them from the “real” world and the water joins them together as one. In the water, their love for each other and anything else is possible. Their love for one another is cleansing and water is the unique image used to help show this purity, depth and magnitude of their love. Although water is used as a symbol of rebirth it is also is used to symbolize sorrow and misfortune. In the scene where Tybalt is killed by Romeo, he falls into the water while a heavy rainfall occurs at the same time. Here, water is associated with the disastrous tragedy that has just happened and the even more misfortunate events yet to unfold.
Romeo and Juliet’s rings are used to symbolize their love for each other. On the ring, the words “I love thee” are carved which displays the strong, passion they have for one another. The ring is a very appropriate and effective way of presenting their love as it is in the shape of a circle, which displays the image of their love going in circles that will never have an end. Also carved on the ring is the letters R & J, which represents the two lovers’ names. The names are only represented by one letter and this shows the concept of love is blind and that what they are and who they are does not matter. The only that matters is their love.
Soon several member of both houses jump into the fight as well as citizens of Verona. Capulet calls for his sword. Then Montague tells his wife to let him go so he can attack Capulet. The fight is then broken up by the Prince stating that if the Capulets and Montagues get into a fight again, those responsible will be put to death. Everyone departs the scene save for Montague, Lady Montague, and ...
Religious symbols can be seen everywhere and the film is replete with religious imagery. Luhrmann takes Shakespeare’s idea of religious imagery and exaggerates it until it becomes clearly obvious. Huge oil paintings depicting such biblical scenes as Christ ejecting the money lenders from the temple decorate the gaudy Capulet mansion. Crosses, immaculate hearts and images of the Virgin become fashion accessories. the guns which the Montagues and the Capulets carry are decorated with images of religious icons. Juliet has a Madonna statue and Victorian images of angels. A large statue of Christ stands overlooking the city of Verona Beach.
The church plays a prominent role in the modern-day Verona Beach and hymns are sung by church choirs. Despite all this religious icons the characters are surrounded by to reflect the depth of their religion, all are just token symbols. The reality of their society is not represented by these symbols at all. Instead, the city is corrupted and overwhelmed with violence. The repeated focus on the Jesus statue and other religious icons in the opening scene, comments on how religion, like the law, is no longer an effective means of maintaining peace and harmony in modern society.