Movie Review-IN THE HEIGHTS
IN THE HEIGHTS is currently in theaters and also showing on HBO/Max. It's a very contemporary musical with amazing music and very sharply choreographed dance scenes. The movie is set in a Dominican neighborhood in Washington Heights, a Manhattan community in New York City.
The movie is directed by John M. Chu who was also at the helm of the movie CRAZY, RICH ASIANS. And just as he did in that movie IN THE HEIGHTS does a fantastic job of portraying the community and the culture of the Dominican community. It's a rare positive portrayal of Latino people who come to America, work hard and pursue their dreams.
The movie stars Anthony Ramos as Usnavi, a bodega store owner who runs the store with his younger cousin (Gregory Diaz IV). The movie hits the ground running with a song and dance number from Usnavi who explains his situation in the neighborhood in song. The movie is filled with great songs performed by the very talented cast.
The movie is reminiscent of the musical WEST SIDE STORY but instead of Anglos in dark skin makeup the cast is filled with some fantastic Latino actors who are all passionate about their roles in the movie and it really shows. IN THE HEIGHTS is a very uplifting story. My favorite line in the movie which also represents the film is, "we are not powerless, we are powerful."
Usnavi, while connected to his community in Washington Heights, dreams of the island paradise where he grew up, The Dominican Republic. He saves his money and plans to return there one day.
IN THE HEIGHTS is a fantastic movie that will have you dancing in your seat and the songs will stick in your head for a long while after the movie has ended. This movie is a great example of what Hollywood can produce if it will be more
inclusive and positive in the roles they present. (There wasn't a single criminal in this movie!)
The movie is rated PG-13 with a run time of 2 hours and 33 minutes (which goes by really quickly). I cannot say enough good things about this move. I loved it! On my "Hollywood Popcorn Scale" I give IN THE HEIGHTS my highest possible rating, a JUMBO WITH EXTRA BUTTER!