West Side Story ★★★★★

West Side Story is one of the pure five star films I have seen. It is film of perfect scenes, that come directly one after another that it ultimately is just a perfect 150 minutes. Jet Song. Dance at the Gym. Maria. America. Tonight. Somewhere. I mean it is just hit after hit. No musical has a better raft of songs. And then, to hang it off the classic Romeo & Juliet plot, it is utter cinematic bliss.

Natalie Wood, Richard Beymer, Russ Tamblyn, Rita Moreno, and George Chakiris are all wonderful in their respective roles. There isn't a flat note in the whole film. It looks wonderful, Robert Wise's direction, and Jerome Robbins directorial choreography, matched with the colour sets, the spry dancing.

Leonard Bernstein's score, and Stephen Sondheim's lyrics, and Saul Bass' end credits and visual consultation. This is a film buoyed by its spectacular collaborators. The best a film could want.

I read recently that Steven Spielberg is intending to remake the film. I like Spielberg a whole lot. But he is going to have to go some to make a film half as good; to make a film as good, well, that just isn't going to happen.

One of the great Hollywood films. The greatest Hollywood musical.

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