Alexis P. Johnson’s review published on Letterboxd:
Saw this (fully) for the first time last night on the big screen!
On a technical level, it's a great film. I loved the camera angles and use of lighting and color for symbolism throughout.
Though it's a retelling of Romeo and Juliet, which leaves room for some irrational drama or hokey moments, I was surprised by this film. It's musical satirical prose on so much of what our society (STILL) struggles with. Watching this film today, the themes feel more real than ever, and the themes were my favorite aspect. From dissecting the issues with our mental health/social services to street kids, to the obvious theme of racism and prejudice, to the purity of the idealist youth, West Side Story is the quintessential American story. Sadly, one we keep telling over and over and never really learning from.
And don't let the R&J retelling aspect fool you, the ending is fantastic with a bit of a twist from the original story.