According to some, this was what Saving Private Ryan was snubbed in favor of, allegedly due to a campaign by Miramax. A campaign so effective, in fact, the Academy members are said to have actually booed the latter film. Needless to say, the film gets A LOT of hate for said snub. Rejection, thy name isRyan.
Other than Romeo and Juliet, the three Shakespeare plays explicitly referenced in this film are Two Gentlemen of Verona (which the actors are shown performing), Henry VI and Titus Andronicus (which are both mentioned in dialogue). If you're familiar with the timeline of Shakespeare's career, this should immediately make it clear that the movie takes place at an early point in his life. Scholars generally agree that those are three of Shakespeare's earliest plays, and that one of them was probably the very first play he ever wrote (though it's almost impossible to know which one). note Dating is rather inexact, since most plays in the Elizabethan era weren't actually published until long after they were written, and after they had already been performed for years. But by comparing the plays and analyzing their composition, scholars have at least managed to develop a rough idea of which plays came first.
Every trope that happens in this movie - Sweet Polly Oliver, King Incognito, etc. - refers to similar tropes that pop up - often repeatedly - in Shakespeare's plays.
The Earldom of Wessex hadn't existed for nine hundred years when this movie came out with a fictional Lord Wessex as the villain; a year after the film's release, Prince Edward was created Earl of Wessex on his marriage.
Hype Backlash: Inverted. People seem to forget it's quite a good movie due to anger over the Best Picture win. Among Rotten Tomatoes' Top Critics, its Tomatometer and average review score are nearly identical to Ryan's.
It also doesn't help that Harvey Weinstein was later fired from his own company for sexual harassment, with Gwyneth Paltrow among his victims. Every picture of her awkwardly smiling next to him at the Academy Awards paints this movie's nomination in an even more uncomfortable light.
Tear Jerker: Will and Viola parting at the end, never to meet again.
Will: You will never age for me, nor fade, nor die.
They Copied It, So It Sucks: There was some controversy at the time of the film's release due to its alleged similarity to the mid-20th-century novel No Bed For Bacon by Caryl Brahms and S J Simon.
Vindicated by History: For years the film got a torrent of hate for the infamous Award Snub. These days the hate has levelled off and people are more appreciative of it.