Although "West Side Story" was named the best picture of 1961 and won 10 Academy Awards, it is not much mentioned by movie fans these days, and the old warhorse "Singin' in the Rain" is probably more seen and certainly better loved... I hadn't seen it since it was released in 1961, nor had I much wanted to, although I've seen "Singin' in the Rain," "Swing Time," "Top Hat," "My Fair Lady" and "An American in Paris" countless times during those years. My muted enthusiasm is shared. Although "West Side Story" placed No. 41 in the American Film Institute's list of the greatest films of all time, the less industry-oriented voters at the Internet Movie Database don't even have it in the top 250.
I'd venture to guess that it's the only film in his great movies series that he hadn't seen since it's first release. It's also evidence that a "great movie" doesn't have to be a perfect movie.
|:: posted by Donald Melanson, 2/16/2004|