In The Heights (2021)

Jon M. Chu directs Anthony Ramos, Melissa Barrera and Jimmy Smits in this big screen adaptation of Lin-Manuel Miranda’s hit musical about a NY Latinx community facing off gentrification, last chances and unrequited romance during a hot summer week.

Mixing together equal parts West Side Story and Do The Right Thing (and these are the most obvious influences) this aims for hope and positivity over all else. Winningly so. Chu’s brightly hued visual sensibilities are rarely lazy, if he can find an experimental cinematic conceit to open up a stage number then he marries them together with elan. So it can be a little lovey dovey and earnest. Isn’t that exactly the vibe a hit musical should aim for? My main man Detective Bobby Simone cannot sing for toffee. This only adds to the overall spell.

9

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