Genre Grandeur – West Side Story (1961) – MovieRob – Encore Review

For this month’s next review for Genre Grandeur – Movie Musicals, here’s a review of West Side Story (1961) by me

Thanks again to Audrey of 1001 Movies and Beyond for choosing this month’s genre.

Next month’s Genre has been chosen by Ghezal of Ghezal Plus Movies and she has chosen the genre of Film Noir Movies.

Please get me your submissions by the 25th of July by sending them to

Try to think out of the box! Great choice Ghezal!

Let’s see what I thought of this movie:


“Why do you kids live like there’s a war on? ” – Doc

Number of Times Seen – Too many to count (TV, Video, DVD, 26 May 2013 and 26 Jun 2017)

Link to original reviewHere

Brief Synopsis – Modern day musical adaptation of the story of Romeo and Juliet set against the rough neighborhoods of New York city and its gang culture of the 1950’s.

My Take on it – This has always been one of my favorite films and is very high among my list of favorite musicals too.

They do an amazing job taking the popular Shakespeare classic Romeo and Juliet and adapting it for a modern audience.

The choice to make them rival gangs instead of feuding families was a great idea and works so well.

The choreography during the song and dance scenes is spectacular to watch and it’s quite easy to be both engrossed by the story and the songs at the same time.

I saw this so many times as a kid and even had the pleasure of seeing it on stage a few times and I pretty much know most of the songs by heart.

It was great being able to sing or hum along to the score that is quite entertaining to listen to.

It doesn’t surprise me at all that this film was able to win 10 of its 11 Oscar nominations that year including Best Picture and Directors (they jointly got the award).

The only nomination they lost that year was for Best Adapted Screenplay which is quite ironic since that it a large part of why this film is so great.

To this day, in the 57 years of Oscars, no other Musical film has been able to win more awards and their record IMHO will stand for quite some time.

The one thing that always gets e when I watch this is the fact that if these gang members are suppose to be so tough, why are they singing and dancing all around New York?

If you’ve never seen this one,e give it a look!

Bottom Line – Such an amazing film because it does an amazing job modernizing one of Shakespeare’s most popular plays.  The songs and music are spectacular choreographed and written and it’s so easily to get caught up in the story yet at the same time hum or sing along with the music.  I’m not at all surprised that this film had so much momentum come Oscar time that they were able to garner 10 Golden Statuettes that year.  It lost only for best adapted Screenplay and set a record held until today for the most awards of a Musical at the Oscars.  Still find it quite funny and silly that these “tough” gang members can dance so well all around the city.  Highly Recommended!

MovieRob’s Favorite Trivia – The actors in the rival gangs were instructed to play pranks on each other off the set to keep tensions high. (From IMDB)

Rating – Oscar Worthy (no change from original review)


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12 thoughts on “Genre Grandeur – West Side Story (1961) – MovieRob – Encore Review

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