Steve Simels
December 06, 1996 AT 05:00 AM EST

Apparently every era gets the Romeo and Juliet it deserves — witness the current MTV-influenced hit version or this similarly youth-oriented (but more moistly romantic) Franco Zeffirelli treatment, a major date movie back in the Age of Aquarius. Zeffirelli’s direction — well served by a first-time wide-screen transfer — still looks innovatively realistic (read: There’s occasional gore). And the supporting actors, particularly a feral Michael York as Tybalt, are terrific. Still, the whole thing sinks on the shoulders of its pretty teen stars (Hussey and Whiting), who exhibit all the raw talent and sensuality of bit players in some bad Spanish soap. C+

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