Film: A Star Is Born
Cast: Bradley Cooper, Lady Gaga, Sam Elliott, Andrew Dice Clay
Director: Bradley Cooper
Rating: * * * * *
Bradley Cooper is intense, handsome, brooding, and heartbreakingly endearing shows what a star is made of. Ditto Lady Ga Ga who is vulnerable, tough, perceptive, and hugely talented. Both shine in this dazzling remake of “A Star Is Born” which remains true to the original story while bringing it up to date with contemporaneous living. Which is what fells our tragic hero (played by Cooper), who is unable to cope with the slings and arrows of a motherless infancy, a distant paterfamilias and fandom which isn’t interested in the country rockstar as a real person.
Cooper directs as well with a sensitivity that surprised your reviewer. Don’t ask. Cooper also co-wrote the script with Eric Roth and Will Fetters and took the role of Jackson Maine, a hugely successful musician who is smitten by hugely talented waitress Ally (Lady Gaga). The movie begins beautifully by juxtaposing her hopeful lyrics and her tenacity (she adores and sings Edith Piaf) with Jackson’s cynical hopelessness. They fall in love, get married, acquire a dog. No space for a baby but Jackson has a way with dogs, who are great substitutes for babies. He saves Ally but can’t save himself. Backslides from rehab. Despair digs a hole when loved ones lie and tell you they can’t, won’t be around.
Love means forever and a day and anyone who tells you otherwise is Luciferian. In Jacksob’s drug-and-booze fuelled world, it can’t, won’t work especially not with Ally’s hard-headed management who reminded me of Madonna’s manager – publicist. This film works with great songs, and superb actors. I would nominate it in a heartbeat.