“She is an original, and she can’t help but be that every minute of her life. So one gets lost in her personality, happily and feels better for being with her.” Norman Lear

This engaging documentary on RITA MORENO: JUST A GIRL WHO DECIDED TO GO FOR IT includes interviews, clips, and listening to Rita reminisce about her life. It was informative, “raucous,” emotional, and entertaining. 

I never knew the crap Rita had to endure throughout her journey. I did not realize all the self-doubt she suffered. I was entranced about her total honesty and lack of inhibitions sharing some very painful moments. These included a rape and an attempted suicide. Rita did not believe she deserved to be loved. She credits this to a lack of a father figure and being an Hispanic immigrant, who came from Cuba with her mother in the 1930’s. Tough years to find herself and become who she was meant to be, which was always a movie star. 

Rita is the first Hispanic actress to become an EGOT, which means she was awarded a Tony,i an Oscar, a Grammy, and an Emmy. She receive the Screen Actors Guild Lifetime Achievement, The Kennedy Center Honors, and the prestigious Presidential Medal of Freedom. Not bad for a girl who dropped out of school at 15 and was signed  by Louis B Mayer of MGM at 16. She has always been a force to be recognized. 

RITA MORENO  is 87 and co-starring in the remake  of Spielberg’s West Side Story.  She is not planning on retiring any time soon. She still believes the best is yet to come. She says she is finally free to be herself. Did having “to struggle take it out of her? Not I…not I.” I enjoyed learning about this talented, creative, funny, inspiring woman. Many stand on her shoulders who are successful in the industry today. It is available to stream on Netflix. 

Esta Rosevear

Esta Rosevear has been a Theatre Arts teacher and director for 35+ years, published Children’s author of the Rebecca series, and is passionate about playing her violin, walking, gardening, and reading murder mysteries.

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