Paige Stegina | A&E Editor
Most know the classic Shakespearean play, Romeo and Juliet. Hulu has released a modern take on the story through the film. Instead of following Juliet, this adaptation follows Rosaline. In the original story, Rosaline is Romeo’s love interest before he meets Juliet. The film follows this undeveloped character as the cousin of Juliet as she attempts to derail the classic couple’s relationship all while attempting to avoid an arranged marriage set up by her father.
One of the more intriguing aspects of the movie is how it infuses certain essential features of the original text, while also updating it for the modern age. The sets and costuming are beautiful, leaning into the Shakespeare atmosphere. Certain classic scenes, such as Romeo climbing up to Juliet’s balcony, and in this case also Rosaline’s, to express words of love and beauty. However, the film updates certain features for the modern age. The movie keeps modern language, which only creates more of a comedic effect when Romeo insists on declaring his love in Shakespearean language. In terms of the soundtrack, Rosaline tapped into the Bridgeton style of using covers of popular music, including a rendition of “All By Myself”. Kaitlyn Dever as Rosaline brings a modern day spunk, wit, and energy to the role. She is strong in her opinions and fierce in her actions. She actively fights against her father in his attempts to set her up in marriage and is willing to do anything to get Romeo back. However, during the course of the movie, Rosaline develops as a character who sees the consequences of her actions on those around her. Then the same stubborn nature that brought on the story to begin with is what drives the plot as she attempts to save Romeo and Juliet from their tragic fates.
Rosaline is successful in adapting a story of tragedy into one of comedy. The film leans into the atmosphere of Shakespeare while developing a character that is barely mentioned in the original text. Overall, the movie is light hearted and humorous for all that wish to see a happy ending in Verona.
Rosaline is available to watch on Hulu