By William Stevenson
Updated February 13, 1998 at 05:00 AM EST

Dead Poets Society meets Romeo and Juliet. In R & J, director Joe Calarco’s inventive adaptation of Shakespeare’s inventive adaptation of Shakespeare’s tragedy, four boys at a repressive prep school perform the play and shed their inhibitions along the way. Juggling characters, the talented young actors make the familiar story fresh. And when Daniel J. Shore’s character enters solemnly as Juliet, breaking with the other boys’ campy mimicry of women, it’s an electrifying moment. B+