Thursday, November 10, 2011

Still Cool

(I promise my 10Ks post is forthcoming, but here's another quick post to further make up for having written none last month.)

This year marks the 50th anniversary of the release of the masterpiece that is West Side Story.  Anyone who knows me knows that this (winner of ten 1961 Academy Awards) is one of my very very favorite movies, definitely in my top 10 (it's hard to line them up exactly, but I have a pretty clear top 10 at least), and I listen to the soundtrack on a pretty regular basis, and try to get around to watching it at least once every year.  Recently I learned that in honor of this landmark anniversary, NCM Fathom and Turner Classic Movies were bringing it to Cinemark theaters for one night only.  Some of you may know that we have taken to attending several of these Fathom events in the last year or so, including the 25th anniversary concert productions of both Les Misérables (AWEsome) and The Phantom of the Opera (mostly awesome) broadcast from London, and of course the three-week event of The Lord of the Rings, so when I heard about this one, I thought I really just better go for it or I might regret it forevermore.  Sure it's a little pricy for a movie, especially one that I've seen many times and the special edition DVD boxed-set of which I have sitting right there on the shelf, but I mean, the chance for me, having been born in this generation and all, to see West Side Story on the big screen?  I couldn't pass that up!
So my lovely wife supported me in this and we went to see it and it was just resplendent.  There was a short feature at the beginning where they interviewed a few of the cast and crew, which was pretty interesting, but the real excitement started with that whistled theme introducing the Overture.  It looked so big and beautiful on the movie screen, and I loved every second.  The story is of course wonderful, I mean, it IS basically Shakespeare, and my word, what a score.  (I have many times called it one of the best scores ever written, and I stand by it.  You disagree?  I refuse to allow it!  Ha ha.  But seriously.)  I won't go into a lot of detail, because most everyone has already seen this movie, though if you haven't, you really and truly must.  MUST!  Look, I know they're singing juvenile delinquents and their fighting is heavily (and brilliantly) choreographed, but that is the beauty of it.  Own it, accept it, enjoy it, relish it.  Oh yes, it is relish-worthy.  It does make me very emotional, but in kind of surprising parts.  I don't usually cry at the end (thanks to Cami's a-little-too-accurate impersonation of Maria's brilliant final monologue), though that part does make me sad, but for some reason I find parts like America and Cool really moving.  It's just so good it makes me want to cry.  I mean, just look!--

That's it then, just a brief report that we saw this great movie all big and loud last night and it was wonderful and I never ever ever get tired of it, and it really is one of the best movies ever made.  I was thinking last night of just skipping it, but I'm really glad we went.  No matter how many times I watch it, I still always hope that Tony will be able to stop the rumble or that Anita will somehow get that message through or that Doc won't tell Tony or that Chino won't be waiting there in the shadows and that things will turn out differently, but they never ever do.  *sigh*
Of course two teenagers can fall truly and honestly in love in a matter of moments!  Why not, right?  Poor kids.

So basically you should all watch it again.  :D

1 comment:

  1. "America" is on my top five list for favorite song from a musical ever! We need to convince John to like this movie!