‘In the Heights’ is a delightful, vibrant celebration

This movie is pure joy.

In the Heights is a movie about dreams, trying to follow them, and where they take you set in Washington Heights, a dying neighborhood on the verge of gentrification. This isn’t a movie that wants to bash your head in with messages or guilt, it isn’t a movie that wants to say anything more important than be proud of who you are and sometimes your dreams are closer than you think. This movie… it’s joy. It’s joy, color, tradition, song, and life.

I loved it. Simply loved it. There is something for everyone in In the Heights.

This adaptation of the Broadway show stars Anthony Ramos who headlines the entire affair with an unmistakable charisma and likeability. This isn’t a complicated movie…. Usnavy, Ramos’ character, is likable, nice, and a guy you want to root for who has dreams and the courage to chase them. Along the way, he falls in love, encounters complications and heartbreak and you never want to stop being on his side even when he makes the self-discoveries you knew he was going to make.

In the Heights doesn’t muck everything up with complications or complex storytelling, it sets out to be an audience pleaser and that is what it becomes. It never makes it a mission to become anything else and I like that it was simple and entertaining.

The movie is alive with music and dance numbers, all of the songs are catchy and toe-tapping, and you’re going to find yourself humming along. This is an emotional movie as well and, I will admit that I shed a tear during a very emotional sequence that just hit me right in the delicate feels.

I loved it. I loved the experience, the simplicity, the life, love, and music. This is a fantastic musical populated by wonderful characters with charismatic and enjoyable leads. It won’t win any awards for its twists and turns as it ends pretty much how you think it will, but it never claims to be anything more than the crowd-pleaser it is and this crowd? He is pleased.

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