Go see Spielberg's West Side Story


niremetal
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Just saw it in theaters and thought it was amazing. It's just incredible that it was directed by Steven freaking Spielberg, who had never directed a musical before.

I'm convinced now there is literally nothing the guy can't do in terms of film projects. One guy directed Jaws, Raiders of the Lost Ark, ET, Schindler's List, Jurassic Park, Saving Private Ryan, Minority Report, Catch Me If You Can, Lincoln, and now West Side Story. Each of those was groundbreaking, historically great films in their respective genres (which span from horror to drama to sci-fi to historical epic to musical), or both. Even his "misses" were pretty much all good movies, just not "great" ones (The Terminal, the closest he's come to a comedy film in my lifetime, is actually low-key one of my favorite movies). The only one of his movies I really did not like at all was AI, and I have friends who swear that's his best movie.

Anyway, see it in theaters while you can, because the sets, colors, and choreography just won't land the same on a small screen, and apparently no movie stays long in theaters anymore unless it's got lots of explosions.

Edited by niremetal
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This is my "review" that I posted to my personal Facebook page after seeing the movie the night it opened.  

 

I went to see the new West Side Story movie last night. Saw it with my older brother, and our wives, as he and I had seen the original together in 1961 when we were 10 and 8 years old. It had made quite an impression on us, 60 years ago, and it became my favorite musical of all time. So, I was leery about how this new version could possibly compete with it.
The original was so groundbreaking for its time, that there was no way this new one could attempt that. And staying “too true” to the original would make this new version simply redundant. Not sure what was going to happen. It needed to be fresh but respectful to the legacy. In the end, it did all that and more!
From the very opening, Spielberg caught the mood of the original. In fact, this film was even grittier when called for while also being breathtakingly more beautiful than the original, without being overly extravagant. The coloring of the costumes, the very appropriate and powerful restaging of the some of the original numbers (especially “America” – which was fantastic and grand), the excellently precise but still accessible dancing, and the wonderful actual singing (no dubbing of the stars this time), all built upon the original while also creating a new masterpiece.
I especially appreciated the fuller backstories for several main characters and plotlines, as well as the amplification of several original secondary characters. It brought much more depth to the telling of the story for me and made it even more realistic, which was always going to be difficult (considering you are showcasing “gang members” singing and dancing!). It worked perfectly.
All in all, I would say that 50% of this new version was as good as the original, and the other 50% … surpassed it. Seriously, if you haven’t been inside a theater for a while (two years for me – since the pandemic began), THIS is the movie that should tempt you to attend in person, see it on the big screen, with the amazing sound, and share it with people you love, and who love music, drama, and history.
Simply spectacular!!!
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