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West Side Story as Cinema: The Making and Impact of an American Masterpiece (CultureAmerica) Hardcover – October 8, 2013

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$26.58 FREE Shipping on orders over $35. Only 6 left in stock (more on the way). Ships from and sold by Amazon.com. Gift-wrap available.

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West Side Story as Cinema: The Making and Impact of an American Masterpiece (CultureAmerica) + Something's Coming, Something Good: West Side Story and the American Imagination + Our Story Jets and Sharks Then and Now: As Told by Cast Members from the Movie West Side Story
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Editorial Reviews

Review

"Beautifully captures the dense weave of creative voices that were involved in the film's production. Acevedo-Muñoz demonstrates not only why the film's complex mix of music, dance, gender, and race has been so ardently embraced by legions of fans for the past fifty years, but also why West Side Story will continue to influence media culture well into the future."--Jeff Smith, author of The Sounds of Commerce: Marketing Popular Film Music

"A savvy combination of production history and close analysis, this book will seem like candy to lovers of what many consider the high point of the American film musical. A great read and a powerful addition to our understanding of a particularly American film in a particularly American genre."--Rick Altman, author of The American Film Musical

"This is the definitive and most comprehensive book about the film West Side Story. It is filled with fascinating information and thought-provoking commentary, including an Hispanic sensibility that looks at the movie with a fresh point of view. An outstanding work of movie scholarship."--Thomas Hischak, author of The Oxford Companion to the American Musical

About the Author

Ernesto R. Acevedo-Muñoz is associate professor and director of Film Studies at the University of Colorado and author of the books Pedro Almodóvar and Buñuel and Mexico: The Crisis of National Cinema.

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Product Details

  • Series: CultureAmerica
  • Hardcover: 232 pages
  • Publisher: University Press of Kansas (October 8, 2013)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0700619216
  • ISBN-13: 978-0700619214
  • Product Dimensions: 1 x 6.2 x 9 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 12.8 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.4 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (5 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #993,305 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful By T. Fraser on December 11, 2013
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
Exuding devotion for a film close to his heart, Ernesto Acevedo-Munoz eloquently constructs a vision of the riveting drama of West Side Story as Cinema. Determined to unwind the intricacies of West Side Story, he wades into cinematic territory seldom broached by academic experts. In developing extensive original research, the methodical production of West Side Story becomes its own adventurous tale, riddled with inevitable dramas. Extracting fascinating and undisclosed knowledge about West Side Story, the book delves into the process of crafting characters true to gang life in New York. Investigating the significance of police reports, intensive auditions, contextual landscapes, authentic costumes, ghost singers, a dwindling budget and controversy over “America” contributed to his comprehensive study of West Side Story as Cinema. Acevedo-Munoz's book eloquently broadens the spectrum of what West Side Story as Cinema has the potential to divulge historically, formally and artistically.
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4 of 5 people found the following review helpful By Carlos R. Acevedo on December 4, 2013
Format: Hardcover
For anyone who is interested in the creative process, the industry mechanism, structure, cultural and social aspects of a movie, this book is mandatory. West Side Story is an artistic and social benchmark.

Dr. Acevedo-Muñoz gets us into the boardrooms of the Studio producing the film and the sets and locations where the movie was conceived and finally completed. The legal and sociopolitical maneuvers that peppered the history of this movie are presented so that the reader can grasp the impact the this movie had in its time (which goes a long way into explaining why it is so relevant even today).

The scene and song by song explanation invites the reader to comprehend that there are no coincidences in a shot. Every detail is there for a reason and the things we learn with this book and this movie will make the experience from future movie watching much richer.

The person that says that the extra material in the DVD is much better than the book must be unaware that that material must be considered as "promotional" and not historical.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By mplo on April 14, 2014
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
so far, "West Side Story as Cinema" has shaped up to be a wonderful book, with loads of information about how a wonderfully dynamic and beautiful classic film was created.
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2 of 3 people found the following review helpful By J. David Kopp on October 18, 2013
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
For a passionate 'West Side Story' fan, since high school, this was an excellent and informative addition to my WWS library.
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2 of 7 people found the following review helpful By Frank on October 28, 2013
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
The book is mainly a recap of the script. A waste of money. The notes that came with earlier DVDs were more inormative.
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West Side Story as Cinema: The Making and Impact of an American Masterpiece (CultureAmerica)
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