A Star is Born Review

Cooper and Lady Gaga in  A Star is Born

Cooper and Lady Gaga in A Star is Born

A Star is Born is the fourth rendition of the 1937 flick of the same name. It stars Bradley Cooper, playing a successful musician named Jackson Maine, and Lady Gaga, a struggling artist working as a waitress. This was Bradley Cooper’s first work as both the star and director, and he certainly does not disappoint. Lady Gaga, who has never starred in a major motion picture before, knocked her performance out of the ballpark.  Also, the original music deserves every bit of Oscar buzz and critical acclaim.

The film is about the story of Jackson, a successful, yet obsolete country rock artist who meets Ally, an unknown artist who is working as a waitress. Jackson hears her voice, and immediately falls in love. At one of his shows, Maine brings Ally on stage, and the world is introduced to her voice. Ally’s voice becomes a demand, and within the matter of a year and touring with Maine, she is her own artist and independent of Maine.

Before I went to see the movie, I had low expectations. From every trailer I’ve seen, it looked like just another rom-com chick flick. I even went with my girlfriend, thinking that it would at least make a good date movie. However, I have never been more wrong.

The first thing that blew me away was the music. In the opening scene, it shows Maine walking on stage to begin his performance. Cooper and Gaga wanted film scenes with a genuine feel of a concert. That is why all performances were performed and recorded live in front of real crowds, at music festivals such as Lollapalooza, in between other artist’s sets. That means Cooper and Gaga were actually singing. Cooper has a great voice, along with Gaga, whose voice blew me away. All music in the film was original. In order to feel like you’re in attendance at a Jackson Maine concert, you must go see this in theaters while you can.

I was expecting for the movie to be a bit melodramatic. However, it had the perfect amount of drama to draw you in and keep you on the edge of your seat until the end. The on-screen chemistry of Cooper and Gaga is real. You not only feel like Maine and Ally are in love, but also that Gaga and Cooper are in love. This makes the movie more immersive and convincing. There were a couple times where I thought that Cooper could have cut some unneeded, dramatic dialogue. However, overall the movie kept me intrigued.

Bradley Cooper and Sam Elliott in  A Star is Born

Bradley Cooper and Sam Elliott in A Star is Born

Some key roles that I thought were performed extremely well were Gaga’s and Sam Elliott’s role. I had a bad misconception of Lady Gaga. I only thought of her as another pop star that uses auto tune and doesn’t write their own songs. However, her role blew me away. To play Ally, Gaga stripped all the makeup and wigs to reveal her pure self. The first thing that blew me away was her true voice. When she sang, I got chills. The theater erupted with applause after every one of her songs. The second thing that impressed me was Gaga’s ability to act. There was never a point in the movie that I thought that she should stick to singing. In fact, she was so good that I genuinely thought that she was playing herself in her early career. It felt so raw and emotional. She fit this role perfectly.

Another performance that blew me away was Sam Elliott He had a smaller role, playing Maine’s brother who was essentially his manager. There was little information on his brother, yet the lack of words speaks louder than any dialogue that could have been written. There is a specific scene where Maine tells his brother he loves him, and his brother turns around to back out of the driveway, and tears stream from his face, while keeping a straight face. This describes the relationship that Maine and his brother have better than them talking about it.

Overall, I would give this movie a 4.5 out of 5 stars. I would recommend this movie to anyone looking for a success, a failure, a comedy, or tragedy story. This movie definitely requires a tissue. Many people left the theater crying. I think this movie will jump start Lady Gaga’s acting career in taking bigger lead roles, as well as Coopers singing career.

 

Zach Carpenter