West Side Story
Synopsis: It’s the story of Tony and Maria, two teenagers in New York, who fall in love despite their differing backgrounds. Their friends and family are allied to two different gangs, who hate each other with a passion. It’s basically Romeo and Juliet modernised and set to music.
I love this movie, always have done. Rita Moreno is fantastic as Anita, providing a fiery and vivid contrast with Natalie Wood’s softer and rather naive Maria. The songs are wonderful too, particularly ‘America’ delivered by Moreno and the other Puerto Rican characters, about moving to New York, with the female characters expressing all the positive things about the move, while the male characters talk about the negative things.
The dancing was spectacular, particularly in the ‘America’ sequence, and the scene when the Jets (white gang) are coming down the street, performing a ballet with seemingly effortless elegance.
I just like the whole spirit of the film. There’s not one thing that I could say was really that bad within it. It’s clear that other people feel the same way as I do, given how many tv programmes have referenced the film within episodes, ones like Friends, Glee and even Tom and Jerry.