West Side Story is a retelling of Shakespeare’s Romeo and Juliet and the plot basically follows in suit. A little love, a little revenge, and then some death. It’s your typical Shakespearean tragedy. But instead of the feuding families of Montague and Capulet, West Side Story features two gangs: The Jets and Sharks.
I recently posted what I learned at a Screenwriting Seminar with Syd Field. One thing in particular has stayed with me over the weeks and that was his definition of a movie. Syd said, “A movie is a story told through pictures.” There are many reasons we love movies, but one definite reason is we connect with images.
Humphrey Bogart is one of the classiest actors to ever grace the silver screen. He has that old cool Hollywood vibe oozing out his pores. It’s quite refreshing to watch a movie and witness someone on the screen who was born to be there. Casablanca is an unforgettable movie. The cinematography is clean and focused, the storyline interesting, and the characters revealing. When I first saw the film I had to find a quiet place right after to just soak it all in.
“We accept the love we think we deserve.”
I recently watched the film The Perks of Being a Wallflower. It’s a beautiful movie that is incredibly well acted and I wholeheartedly recommend it. A number of themes emerge throughout the movie, but this is essentially a story about growing up. It’s about the resiliency of the human spirit. It’s about love for others and yourself. It’s about the importance of friends. And it’s about the need to not simply observe life, but to live it.