Top 50 Greatest NYC Movies — #32
West Side Story (dir. Robert Wise, 1961)
This legendary musical, and winner of 10 Academy Awards (including Best Picture of 1961) is pure New York, from its Broadway origins at the hands of Leonard Bernstein and Stephen Sondheim, to its legendary on-location shoot. Director Robert Wise was constantly head-to-head with Robert Moses in the efforts to keep the old San Juan Hill neighborhood in the west 60’s intact long enough for him to finish filming, while Moses was preparing to build Lincoln Center on the same spot. Based on a modern Romeo & Juliet play called East Side Story (about the romance between a Catholic boy and a Jewish girl on the Lower East Side), this beloved opera reflects the universality of star-crossed love and both the joys and the tensions of a culturally diverse city.
- Posted in: 10 Best List