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Rita Moreno remembers West Side Story's bold, subversive 'America'
The 85-year-old film legend talks about delicious dance moves, blingy costumes, and porny shops

Joe McGovern@jmcgvrn

In 1961, Rita Moreno achieved movie immortality with her performance as the no-nonsense Anita in West Side Story. Set within a vibrant Puerto Rican community in New York City (though filmed almost entirely in Los Angeles), the film won 10 Oscars, including best supporting actress for Moreno and best picture.

The actress, now 85 and earning raves for her work on Netflix’s One Day at a Time, talked to EW about the barnstorming song-and-dance number “America,” in which she jousts with her boyfriend (George Chakiris) about the pros and cons of their adopted home.



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Book Review: "Robert Wise: The Motion Pictures" By Joe Jordan

BY DEAN BRIERLY

For a film director with such an iconic resume, there’s a surprising scarcity of scholarly books devoted to Robert Wise, the man who directed such classics as "West Side Story" (1961), "The Haunting" (1963), “The Sound of Music” (1965), “The Curse of the Cat People” (1944), “The Day the Earth Stood Still” (1951), “The Sand Pebbles” (1966) and many other critical and commercial successes. To say nothing of his stature as the man who edited “Citizen Kane” (1941) and “The Magnificent Ambersons” (1942) before taking up decades-long residence in the director’s chair.

Wise brought a self-effacing approach to directing, one that never drew attention to itself. He may have had the most “invisible” style of all the major directors from Hollywood’s Golden Era, which no doubt helps explain why he never had the auteur imprimatur conferred upon him by French critics who swooned over Welles’ baroque visuals, Douglas Sirk’s melodramatic excess, and Howard Hawks’ male-bonding thematic.
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Silent, colour 8mm home movies shot behind the scenes of the filming of WEST SIDE STORY. Included are many of the songs and also included is a comparison of the film and the behind-the-scenes footage. What the cast can be seen doing at 2:53 is a "rain dance". They would do rain dances in order to stop filming to rest. Eventually they were told to stop because it actually worked!

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Cleveland Orchestra closes season in style with spectacular 'West Side Story' film presentation

By Zachary Lewis, The Plain Dealer ,
zlewis@plaind.com

CLEVELAND, Ohio - Call it unorthodox. Call it populist. Just don't call the Cleveland Orchestra's season finale anything less than spectacular.

Sure, by performing "West Side Story" live with the film, the orchestra is breaking a few tired, unwritten rules. Instead of its traditional subscription brochure, the orchestra is taking a page out of its "At the Movies" pamphlet.

But who cares? The reward justifies the risk. Any number of core classical works might have filled the season finale slot, but the fact is "West Side Story" suits the occasion perfectly, better than just about anything else.
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West Side Story Sing-Along

Part of the Summer Classics Series

Wednesday, June 28 · @ 7:15 PM
Price: $10.00 regular | $8.00 student & senior | $7.50 ArtsQuest Member

Venue: Frank Banko Alehouse Cinemas
ArtsQuest Center
101 Founders Way
Bethlehem, PA 18015
610-297-7100
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A fascinating and moving account of the romantic and creative partnership of storyboard artist Harold Michelson and film researcher Lillian Michelson: two unsung heroes of Hollywood’s Golden Age.

Harold and Lillian worked on hundreds of renowned films including The Ten Commandments, The Apartment, The Birds, Who’s Afraid Of Virginia Woolf?, The Graduate, Rosemary’s Baby, Fiddler On The Roof, Scarface, Full Metal Jacket and many more.

Although the couple was responsible for some of Hollywood’s most iconic examples of visual storytelling, their contributions remain largely uncredited. Through an engaging mix of love letters, film clips and candid conversations with Harold and Lillian, Danny DeVito, Mel Brooks, Francis Ford Coppola and others, this deeply engaging documentary from Academy Award®-nominated director Daniel Raim chronicles their remarkable marriage and extraordinary careers through six decades of movie-making history.

HAROLD AND LILLIAN will open in theaters in early 2017
petzipellepingo: (wss national kyle ali by skybound2)
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I'm been thinking a lot about the possibility of a remake lately. Read more... )
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Darren Aronofsky’s Favorite Movies and Where to Stream Them

By Indiewire Staff

West Side Story

“Since we were going to talk about music and film, I wanted to definitely choose a piece from my favorite musical, ‘West Side Story’…The camera’s in exactly the right place for every single shot, as far as capturing the choreography, telling the story, including the right characters at the right time. From the opening shot, you can see that the bars over to the side are going to end up, for the final verse, behind. The director is already thinking about where the entire number is going to go."

http://www.indiewire.com/gallery/darren-aronofsky-favorite-movies-stream/#!11/west-side-story/

At 2:58

Feb. 11th, 2017 03:44 am
petzipellepingo: (wss bernardo by love_disco)
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Witness the Evolution of Cinematography with Compilation of Oscar Winners



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Top 10 Best Romance Movies of the 1940s - 1960s

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La La Land video compares film to its classic cinematic inspirations

Joey Nolfi@joeynolfi

La La Land is riding high this week after the film scored a record-tying 14 Oscar nominations, and a new video is diving into the cinematic predecessors that inspired Damien Chazelle’s hit movie musical.



Edited by Sara Preciado, the clip compares La La Land‘s visuals to those found in various films released over the years, including obvious genre brethren like 1978’s Grease, 1969’s Sweet Charity, 1961’s West Side Story, 1952’s Singin’ in the Rain, and the 2001 song-and-dance extravaganza Moulin Rouge!

Read more... )

At 2:54

Dec. 17th, 2016 09:56 am
petzipellepingo: (wss america by whimsicalage)
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Movie musicals were hugely popular from the early days of cinema through the early 1950's, before the genre began a slow decline. But one of this year's most buzz-worthy films -- a likely Oscar contender -- has critics singing its praises. That's putting the focus on a possible revival of musicals made just for the big screen. Anthony Mason reports.

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Baroness Floella Benjamin, OBE introduces West Side Story

The actress, author, presenter and politician introduces this classic musical at the British Film Institute, Monday 19 December 2016 19:50.

Actress, author, presenter and politician Baroness Floella Benjamin introduces a film that has inspired her. West Side Story is the multi Academy Award-winning musical inspired by Romeo and Juliet. Set in New York’s West Side, young lovers Maria and Tony become caught up in the battle between rival gangs the Jets and the Sharks.

Champions and Members can priority book up to four tickets and the first is free.

https://whatson.bfi.org.uk/Online/default.asp?doWork::WScontent::loadArticle=Load&BOparam::WScontent::loadArticle::article_id=F366A4FE-8B2F-4D66-8377-DD7121415D59&BOparam::WScontent::loadArticle::context_id=24CE6694-9459-46D3-A8F3-1B17EDF6C1CE
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West Side Story on Turner Classic Movies :

Friday November, 18 2016 at 10:15 PM
Thursday December, 29 2016 at 05:00 AM
Thursday March, 2 2017 at 08:00 PM

Natalie Wood - Star Of The Month, Fridays in November
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petzipellepingo: (wss tony maria balcony by tafs_icons)
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12 ‘Romeo and Juliet’ Movies, Ranked
Not all adaptations are alike in dignity

1. West Side Story (1961)


It speaks to the eternal brilliance of Shakespeare that when we reimagine his plays in strange new places, they work all the better — and it speaks to the perfection of Robert Wise and Jerome Robbins’ West Side Story that it beat out all these lush Renaissance retellings for the top spot among Romeo and Juliet movies. Fair Verona becomes Manhattan in the 1950s, where rival gangs the Jets and the Sharks are embroiled in a bitter turf war, and former Jet Tony (Richard Beymer) romances the Sharks’ leader’s sister Maria (Natalie Wood) from the bottom of a fire escape. While nobody speaks a word of Shakespeare, the movie’s got the next best thing in Stephen Sondheim, who got one of his first major gigs writing the lyrics to Leonard Bernstein’s songs. And while the young lovers are both sufficiently charming, it’s George Chakiris’ Bernardo (the Tybalt character) and Rita Moreno’s Anita (the Nurse) who steal the show in Oscar-winning performances buoyed by some killer dancing. West Side Story may not be written in iambic pentameter, but its passion and sincerity get to the heart of Romeo and Juliet better than anything else.

http://www.ew.com/gallery/romeo-and-juliet-adaptations/2799581_1-west-side-story-1961

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