A Star Is Born was one of few movies that made me choke up in theatres. Admittedly, I have never watched the original version of this movie so I can’t make much of a comparison, but I can confirm that this adaptation was beautifully executed. Jackson Maine (Bradley Cooper) is a professional musician who stumbles upon Ally (Lady Gaga), a woman singing recreationally at a drag bar. As Jackson helps bring Ally into the world of fame, they become romantic. Unfortunately, substance abuse creeps into the spotlight and imposes stress on both their careers and their relationship.
First and foremost, the music in this movie is phenomenal. Lady Gaga’s talent in this department is obviously well recognized, but who knew Bradley Cooper could sing! Even Gaga was blown away by Cooper’s voice (both actors discuss their admiration for one another in this interview). Listen to Shallow and judge for yourself—their chemistry on screen becomes a literal beautiful harmony through their vocals.
When looking at their chemistry on screen more closely, the film really helped build up their relationship and connection by having longer intimate scenes. Many movies opt to have montages to compress time; they flash through a bunch of scenes with laughter, sunshine, and happiness. This is not the case in A Star Is Born. The movie focuses more closely on specific moments, and continuously refers back to an inside joke between the lovers about Ally’s nose. The connection feels real, and you can’t help but wonder what could go wrong. I will not spoil anything, but substance abuse becomes a really important part of this movie, and I think this sensitive topic was thoughtfully implemented.
This movie is a big step for both Gaga and Cooper in their careers. This was Bradley Cooper’s directing debut, and Lady Gaga’s first time in a lead role. I suspect Oscar nominations!