West Side Story (Single Disc) (DVD)

Starring Natalie Wood et al

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R 55


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Garnering a total of ten Academy Awards - including Best Picture of 1961 - West Side Story set a brilliant standard for movie musicals that remain unsurpassed to this day. Directed by Robert Wise and Jerome Robbins from Ernest Lehman's spectacular screenplay, the film combines the unforgettable score ("Maria", "America", "Somewhere", "Tonight") of Leonard Bernstein and Stephen Sondheim with Robbin's exuberant choreography to create a transcendent fusion of realism and fantasy that will forever be a feast for the eye, the ear, and ultimately, the heart. A triumph on every level, this electrifying musical sets the ageless tragedy of Romeo and Juliet against a backdrop of gang warfare in the slums of 1950's New York. Starring Natalie Wood, Richard Beymer, Russ Tamblyn and - in Supporting Actor Oscar-winning roles - Rita Moreno and Georg Chakiris, it remains "on of the most popular musicals in history".

Number of Discs
TV System
South Africa
  1. 2
  1. Jerome Robbins
West Side Story
  1. Natalie Wood
  2. Richard Beymer
  3. Rita Moreno
Running Time
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John, South Africa. 15 January 2004

West Side Story, considered by many the greatest movie musical ever, is beautifully packaged in its collector's edition set. The quality of the new 5.1 sound and the picture are excellent. The DVD, like the video, features the original on-screen, colour-changing graphic of New York while Leonard Bernstein’s overture introduces you to the strong musical numbers which are to follow. The 1961 film has not dated and will be enjoyed by everyone. The music and dance is strong and the acting good. From the opening sequence where we are introduced to the two New York gangs, the Jets and the Sharks, to the dramatic finale, this film is not to be missed and is a ‘must have’ in any DVD collection. An absolute cinema classic.

The second disk features a documentary “West Side Memories” and it is amazing the political intrigue that went on behind the scenes, particularly regarding the co-director Jerome Robbins who choreographed and directed the original Broadway production. Robert Wise, one of my favourite directors, gives his views about the story and the making of the movie and some of the behind the scenes intrigue. The whole presentation box is rounded off with a thick (although small-sized) booklet that gives the original screenplay and cinema lobby brochure. The Take2 price is also excellent in terms of value for money and on par with the cost in the USA. I bought my copy from the USA last year and am not sorry.

DVD Features:
o Disc 1:
o New Dolby Digital 5.1 audio
o Option to play feature with or without intermission
o Disc 2:
o "West Side Memories": 1-hour retrospective documentary containing Natalie Wood's original vocal recordings and new interviews with the cast and crew, including Robert Wise and Stephen Sondheim
o Original film intermission music, restored and remixed in 5.1 surround
o Storyboard-to-film comparison
o Original release trailers and behind-the-scenes photos, plus production design and storyboard galleries
o Collectible scrapbook:
o Ernest Lehman introduction
o Complete copy of the working film script
o Reproduction of the original lobby brochure
o Behind-the-scenes memos plus film reviews from 1961
o Widescreen anamorphic format
o Number of discs: 2

Region details

DVD Region 2

Region 2 - Europe (except Russia, Ukraine, and Belarus), Middle East, Egypt, Japan, South Africa, Swaziland, Lesotho, Greenland, French Overseas departments and territories.

R 55

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