OSCAR: ARIANA DEBOSE: BEST SUPPORTING ACTRESS 2021.
“West Side Story” is Spielberg’s Triumph!
I LOVED it! And I hated the original movie! This is Spielberg at his most relaxed and entertaining. “West Side Story” is his most purely enjoyable movie since “Raiders of the Lost Ark.” No fuss. Just one great scene flowing into another.
Justin Peck and Mike Faist.
And what a stunning cast, out-performing the originals in every way thanks to some breathtaking choreography by Justin Peck that transcends Jerome Robbins‘ original more balletic style (shout out to Mike Faist the leader of the Jets -WOW!).
Rachel Zegler’s Maria is a goddess sent from cinema heaven. The scene where Tony and Maria first see each other in the dance hall is magic, cinematic gold. Yes, Ansel (Elgort) is a bit bland, but he sings beautifully and in no way takes from the experience.
Of course, Anita is the real star of the movie and Ariana DeBose is astonishing. She out-Rita’s Rita Moreno who has a role of her own, especially written for her by Tony Kushner, and she is lovely. I think that handing her “Somewhere,” which she does beautifully, may have been a mistake since it deprives Tony and Maria of a seminal moment. But, overall, superb. See it. See it.