Hollywood loves to turn Broadway musicals into movie extravaganzas. Since films started to sing and dance, producers have looked to the stage for shows that could thrive on screen. Over the years, from \u201cMy Fair Lady\u201d and \u201cThe Sound of Music\u201d to, more recently, \u201cHairspray\u201d and \u201cInto the Woods,\u201d movie adaptations continue to become bigger shows. On stage, a small musical called \u201cIn the Heights\u201d quietly opened in New York in 2007 with a score by then-unknown composer and lyricist Lin-Manuel Miranda. This simple story, about people sharing their dreams and realities while occasionally feeling trapped in Washington Heights, immediately connected with audiences looking for substance beyond sizzle. No surprise, the show won the Tony for Best Musical for reaching beyond the dazzle to sincerely open its musical window to a distinct neighborhood filled with interesting people. For the transfer to the screen, filmmaker John M. Chu - who brought us \u201cCrazy Rich Asians\u201d - finds every way to enlarge every moment. From a big musical number in a swimming pool - reminiscent of grand MGM musicals starring Esther Williams - to a dancing on the side of a building that defies gravity - borrowing from Fred Astaire in \u201cRoyal Wedding\u201d - the movie constantly looks for ways to visually top itself. While the narrative follows the stage version, the film\u2019s approach to telling that story is closer to the golden days of the Hollywood musical than to the realities of Washington Heights. Chu transforms a small musical about people into a full-scale extravaganza where each production number tries to outdo one before. That\u2019s wonderful for those of us who love musicals but, at moments, risks overwhelming the intimate power of this show. As the film begins, we meet Usnavi, a bodega owner who introduces the friends and family who define his daily life in this corner of the city. Each brings dreams for the future, including the father who sends his daughter to Stanford with hopes for what she can accomplish, a young woman working in a nail salon while wishing for a downtown life in fashion, and the spiritual leader of the neighborhood who willingly shares her wisdom and food. As they sing and dance, and face the ups and downs that life can bring, we\u2019re inspired to greet each new day with hope and conviction. Within this framework, Miranda - who later wrote and starred in \u201cHamilton\u201d on Broadway - celebrates his unique approach to using song to develop character and advance the story. Rather than follow musical comedy tradition, where characters talk until they sing and dance, Miranda freely moves between dialogue and all types of music to create a seamless experience. Moviemaker Chu matches the magic of Miranda\u2019s work with every type of visual approach. And it looks and sounds wonderful. The best movie musicals from Broadway retain the magic of the original while capitalizing on what the screen can offer. Fortunately, the heart of \u201cInto the Heights\u201d is so strong that it can\u2019t get lost, even in this amazing display of song and dance. \u201cInto the Heights\u201d runs 2 hours, 23 minutes, and is rated PG-13 for \u201csome language and suggestive references.\u201d The film is showing in theaters and on HBOMax.