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Steven Spielberg's WEST SIDE STORY (2021)


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1 hour ago, jamesjazzguitar said:

Spielberg was NOT making a reboot/remake of the movie,  but instead a movie version of the original play.    

The original 1957 Broadway production, conceived, directed and choreographed by Jerome Robbins and produced by Robert E. Griffith and Harold Prince,

Therefore in that regard the 1961 film version is no more "original" than the Spielberg film version. 

 

 

Thanks for fighting the good fight, james, but now that " the dissenter" is back on the scene she'll be trotting out all the same misinformation and weird logic we've seen so may times before re: the remake. Anyone who'd care to get caught up should check out the numerous threads on West Side Story she's started in the Musicals sub-forum, minus the one which the moderators deleted when she got so abusive to fellow posters. Grain of salt here, folks. 

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1 hour ago, DougieB said:

Thanks for fighting the good fight, james, but now that " the dissenter" is back on the scene she'll be trotting out all the same misinformation and weird logic we've seen so may times before re: the remake. Anyone who'd care to get caught up should check out the numerous threads on West Side Story she's started in the Musicals sub-forum, minus the one which the moderators deleted when she got so abusive to fellow posters. Grain of salt here, folks. 

As for weird logic;   my guess is that no matter what they would have complained about this Spielberg adaptation;   If the setting,  content,  part of the storyline was much different than that of the movie,  they would have complained it should be like the 1961 movie version of the play,  and if it was similar (like it is),  they instead complain that it is too much like the 1961 movie version and thus there was no reason for it to be made!

 

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I'm watching West Side Story as I type this. The gymnasium dance scene will have completed by the time I'm done. 

I can think of few less worthy endeavors than remaking this movie. It is if not my all time favorite, it's close enough to qualify as such depending on my mood that given day. As a preteen I wore out my mothers LP soundtrack way before I ever saw the film. I could, and did frequently, sing -and dance- my little heart out from track 1 side 1 to the end of side 2. 

 I cannot imagine the bet Spielberg lost that is forcing him to waste so much money and time. I guess he should be thankful The Warriors wasn't available for a makeover.

The social issues explored in the film 60 years ago are just as relevant today as they were then.  A freshened up woke treatment might fool the uninitiated, but we that have grown up with them know better. 

Oh, that's right.....he's filming the play.. OK, that usually works. Jersey Boys was so much better on screen than stage, .......it wasn't? Ok, strike one, but Rent! that one was better on screen. ....well I guess that's strike two. Surely Spielberg won't strike out, ...again. 

And spare me the Natalie didn't sing business. If you can play along with dancing gang rumbles and knife fights a few lip syncing scenes shouldn't offend your sense of reality too much. 

I'll probably watch this rehash and who knows I might even like it, after all his War of the Worlds tribute was pretty good.

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16 minutes ago, Moe Howard said:

War of the Worlds tribute was pretty good

Y'mean that TOM CRUISE movie?  Mixed bag.  Typical of SPEILBERG, that one is filled with powerful images.

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Posted (edited)

As a devout fan of the original 1961 film version of  West Side Story, I saw the new trailer of the upcoming new film version of West Side Story  by Steven Spielberg and I do not  plan on seeing it when it hits the movie theatres this December, for the following reasons:

A)  Given the intensely brilliant Leonard Bernstein Musical Score, the very story behind West Side Story,  the great cinematography by the late Daniel Fapp, and the seamlessly and creatively combined on-location scenes with sound stage scenes, the cast of the 1961 film v version, and the fact that the  original  1961 film version of West Side Story  won 10 well-deserved and well-earned Academy Awards, including Best Picture, the new film version of West Side Story feels all wrong to me, and not like West Side Story at all, any more. 

B)  The new film version of  West Side Story  feels totally unnatural, forced, and way too contemporary for my tastes.  It seems extremely overdone, too bombastic, too intense, too out of control, and too heavy for me, plus everything seems to be happening in a non-stop manner.  A musical is also supposed to have some lightness to it as well, and the new film version seems to not have that.  

C)  The Jets, the Sharks, and their girls in the new film version of  West Side Story  look far more like wealthy suburban prep school kids who are dressed to the nines for partying around town than two street gangs who are at war with each other, and the dancing seems far too hyped up.

D)  Also, given Ansel Elgort's record of being rather assaultive, especially to underage girls, and the fact that he posted a nude picture of himself in the shower to some cause (which escapes me at the moment) he was involved in, Ansel Elgort sounds like a dangerous, disgusting and gross human being.  

E)  There are some people calling for Elgort's replacement, but that's impossible, given that the filming was done almost 2 years ago.  Elgort doesn't have that great a voice, nor does he have the looks of an ex-gangster, either.  

F)  Having said all of the above, I prefer the  original 1961 film version of   West Side Story over the new film version.

Edited by miki
Just to add why the WSS reboot feels all wrong to me.
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23 hours ago, Bogie56 said:

But why would a person with Spielberg's talent and license to choose wish to remake anything?

That's a good, interesting question, Bogie56.  Frankly, I think it wasn't a wise decision for Spielberg to do a reboot of the film  West Side Story.  I saw the new trailer for his  film version of West Side Story, was not at all impressed,  and, for a number of reasons, do not plan on going to see it.

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On 4/30/2021 at 5:29 PM, jamesjazzguitar said:

Spielberg was NOT making a reboot/remake of the movie,  but instead a movie version of the original play.    

The original 1957 Broadway production, conceived, directed and choreographed by Jerome Robbins and produced by Robert E. Griffith and Harold Prince,

Therefore in that regard the 1961 film version is no more "original" than the Spielberg film version. 

 

 

I saw the new trailer for Spielberg's film version of West Side Story, and it looks  absolutely nothing like the original late 1950's stage play of WSS.  Therefore, in that regard, the original version of the 1961 film version of West Side Story was the one that came out first, which I already prefer over Spielberg's reboot of it.

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On 4/30/2021 at 7:35 PM, DougieB said:

Thanks for fighting the good fight, james, but now that " the dissenter" is back on the scene she'll be trotting out all the same misinformation and weird logic we've seen so may times before re: the remake. Anyone who'd care to get caught up should check out the numerous threads on West Side Story she's started in the Musicals sub-forum, minus the one which the moderators deleted when she got so abusive to fellow posters. Grain of salt here, folks. 

Come on now, DougieB.  I recently saw the trailer of Steven Spielberg's upcoming film version of West Side Story,  did not like it, and plan on voting my pocketbook and not going to see this film when it hits the theatres this December.

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Rita Moreno doesn't seem to have a problem with it, since she's both on screen and an executive producer on the new film.  Sorry you feel that way.

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So what?  I can still have my own opinion about it.  To me, Spielberg's version just doesn't  feel like West Side Story any more.

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I understand the emotional response to this topic. WEST SIDE STORY (1961) is a great, beloved film. But people, it was outdated by the time it hit the theaters! 

Time moves fast, things change...

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41 minutes ago, miki said:

So what?  I can still have my own opinion about it.  To me, Spielberg's version just doesn't  feel like West Side Story any more.

I didn't write that you couldn't have your own opinion.   Rita can have hers.  And I can have mine, though I haven't made up my mind yet, since the film is still seven months from release.  

Enjoy your day.

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On 5/2/2021 at 9:32 AM, miki said:

It seems extremely overdone, too bombastic, too intense, too out of control, and too heavy for me.

 Ansel Elgort sounds like a dangerous, disgusting and gross human being.  

And all that based on the trailer? Reminds me of before we even had that much to go on when you were convinced the movie would be full of assault weapons, "rap and hip-hop", etc. etc. No wonder the Moderators booted Holden's thread down to this sub-forum once you entered the scene. What exactly was too intense and bombastic for you? The opening dreamlike shots of a quiet cityscape at dawn, a man sweeping the street, laundry blowing in the breeze, a church bell sounding and a candle being placed in front a statue of the Virgin Mary? Is that what convinced you there isn't any "lightness" to this movie?

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6 hours ago, DougieB said:

And all that based on the trailer? Reminds me of before we even had that much to go on when you were convinced the movie would be full of assault weapons, "rap and hip-hop", etc. etc. No wonder the Moderators booted Holden's thread down to this sub-forum once you entered the scene. What exactly was too intense and bombastic for you? The opening dreamlike shots of a quiet cityscape at dawn, a man sweeping the street, laundry blowing in the breeze, a church bell sounding and a candle being placed in front a statue of the Virgin Mary? Is that what convinced you there isn't any "lightness" to this movie?

I beg to differ with you here, Dougie.  Having watched the trailer of Spielberg's upcoming film version of West Side Story, I stand by all that I've said, and will not go back on my opinion.  The whole thing seems forced, unnatural, too intense and too heavy, and all wrong for me,  the dancing, which is choreographed by  Justin Peck, seems far too hyped up, and it does not feel at all like West Side Story to me.   My preference is for the original 1961 film version of West Side Story, and that's that.

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On 4/27/2021 at 8:40 PM, HoldenIsHere said:

 Spielberg's movie is set in the 1950s , corresponding to the time when the original musical play was produced on Broadway.

Now the image of Maria twerking is burned into my brain!  :)

 

Spielberg's upcoming film version is presumably set in the late 1950's through the 1960's.  Films that are presumably set during the 1950's and 1960's, but  are  made  after that period have not come out very well, and, having watched the trailer of Spielberg's upcoming film version of West Side Story, I don't see  it as being any exception to that.

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On 4/26/2021 at 6:26 AM, TikiSoo said:

Agree. I like the idea that it keeps the flavor of the original. Is it supposed to be a period piece set in the 60's? I don't see NYC looking like that much anymore, nor the modest clothing. 

I'm not sure an update would be such a good thing for this movie-somehow I can't picture Maria twerking.

Frankly, I don't think that Steven Spielberg's upcoming film version of West Side Story is anything like the original 1961 film version of West Side Story.    Frankly,  it doesn't come off very well.  It's too contemporary for my tastes.

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On 4/30/2021 at 5:29 PM, jamesjazzguitar said:

Spielberg was NOT making a reboot/remake of the movie,  but instead a movie version of the original play.    

The original 1957 Broadway production, conceived, directed and choreographed by Jerome Robbins and produced by Robert E. Griffith and Harold Prince,

Therefore in that regard the 1961 film version is no more "original" than the Spielberg film version. 

 

 

I stand by everything  I've said, jamesjazzguitar.  

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On 5/2/2021 at 5:30 PM, Herman Bricks said:

I understand the emotional response to this topic. WEST SIDE STORY (1961) is a great, beloved film. But people, it was outdated by the time it hit the theaters! 

Time moves fast, things change...

Oh, come on, Herman Bricks!  A lot of the older classic films, including the original 1961 film version of West Side Story, are far better than much, if not most of what's coming out nowadays in the way of movies.  Hollywood, on the whole, is far too into creating remakes/reboots and sequels of older classic films, because they've clearly run out of creative ideas.

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3 hours ago, miki said:

I stand by everything  I've said, jamesjazzguitar.  

Uh,  you already replied to my post.    You didn't need to reply again just to show how stubborn you are.   Trust me,  I get that after our previous exchanges about West Side Story and so called "remakes" in general.

 

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Everyone, it's okay for miki to prefer the 1961 version. Let her continue enjoying it.

And miki...it's okay for any director to make their own version of the story and for people to like it.

:) 

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10 hours ago, TopBilled said:

Everyone, it's okay for miki to prefer the 1961 version. Let her continue enjoying it.

And miki...it's okay for any director to make their own version of the story and for people to like it.

:) 

I don't recall anyone in all these lengthy discussions ever questioning miki's right to "prefer" the 1961 version. What drives us (or at least me) up the wall is her insistence that any other version would automatically be inferior, sight unseen. And we're not automatically siding with Spielberg; people have been pretty clearly taking a wait-and-see attitude. And now, on the basis of a 1:31- minute teaser, she's characterizing the movie as "extremely overdone, too bombastic, too intense, too out of control and too heavy". She's clearly moved beyond merely stating a preference. I feel bad for the OP, Holden. Lots of threads in General Discussion focus on a specific film or new release, but somehow once miki made her combative presence known, the mods decided it should be moved to a more out-of-the-way location, presumably to protect the innocent. (Personally, I think her slandering the lead as "a dangerous, disgusting and gross human being" may have been their breaking point.)

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On 5/1/2021 at 9:42 AM, Bogie56 said:

But why would a person with Spielberg's talent and license to choose wish to remake anything?

That's a good question,Bogle56.  It wasn't a wise idea for Spielberg to take on such a project, but I'm against a remake of the original 1961 film version of West Side Story by anybody, including Steven Spielberg.  For a number of reasons that I've posted on this thread,  I plan on voting my pocketbook and boycotting Steven Spielberg's reboot/remake of this film.

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