SXSW Film

Daily reviews and interviews

NY Export: Opus Jazz

Narrative Feature, Emerging Visions
D: Henry Joost, Jody Lee Lipes

A visual feast of color and physical beauty unfolds throughout this "ballet in sneakers," a film adaptation of the 1958 gem by Jerome Robbins, who choreographed this piece as a companion to his famed West Side Story. Shot on location in New York with a 35mm camera, the cast, made up of New York City Ballet dancers, stays true to the theatrical and musical rhythms of the Fifties. The adaptation to film allows for freedom of movement, from remote open spaces to a dimly lit stairwell to a well-worn stage; in every dance number, the characters jump, jive, and roll with the grit and restless spirit of urban youth. Like good dialogue, good dance can leap off the screen and leave you in wide-eyed amazement, with an appreciation for all things creative. Opus Jazz, making its world premiere at this year's SXSW, is no exception. A short documentary by Anna Farrell and Matt Wolf follows this stunning performance.


Saturday, March 20, 7pm, Ritz 2

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NY Export: Opus Jazz

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