Bradley Cooper’s A Star is Born tells the well-known story of a famous man quickly hitting rock bottom, while the woman he loves is rising to the top. This is the fourth version of this story, with previous versions starring Barbra Streisand and Judy Garland in the role taken on by Lady Gaga in the 2018 reiteration.
Most were hesitant about the new remake due to how underwhelming the 1976 version starring Streisand and Kris Kristofferson was. Despite its change from the past films, the 1976 version lacked real purpose and did not say much about the current Hollywood climate.
What makes the 2018 version of the story stand out is the focus on the development of the characters, rather than moving the plot along.
This most recent version of A Star is Born sets itself apart from its three predecessors. The performances were exquisite from both Gaga and Cooper, and the soundtrack has been blowing audiences away.
“I absolutely loved the music. No one ever knows what to expect with Lady Gaga, but she stole the show with her stripped down performances and appearance,” Sophia Thagouras (’20) said.
Cooper took on a new role in this film, playing both the male lead and directing. He was behind the casting of Gaga, a celebrity previously known for her avant-garde style and unique stage personality. In the film, her guard is let down, and Gaga delivers an authentic performance which connects her to the audience.
The movie opens with Jackson Maine (Bradley Cooper), clearly drunk, performing on stage. Maine then goes out for another drink. He finds himself in a drag bar where Ally Campana (Lady Gaga) performs her rendition of “La Vie en Rose.” He invites her out that night, where she sings him a quick song of hers in the back of a parking lot.
One of the iconic songs from the movie is “Shallows,” which is the first time Ally sings on stage. At first hesitant, Ally agrees to sing with Maine and quickly becomes the star of the song. She quickly rises to stardom, and at the same time Ally takes on the role of lover, caretaker, and muse for Maine. Ally was accustomed to taking care of the men around her, but her desire for success and the need to sing clashed with Maine’s constant spiraling. What keeps the pair together is their chemistry and passion for one another.
“Going into the movie, everyone knew that the two would fall in love. However, it was done so well, and their intimacy did not feel like forced chemistry in front of the camera,” Betsy Sachs (’20) said.
In the end, Maine loses his sense of who he is, and Ally is forced to constantly remind him how loved he is. Despite all of the mistakes he makes, Ally cannot stop loving him. When Ally reaches the top, the only person she has to thank is Maine. But, he is no longer the man he was when they first met.
“I have no words for this movie. I never would have imagined Gaga and Cooper in roles like this, but their chemistry on screen was astounding. I recommend everyone do themselves a favor and go see it,” Divya Gada (’21) said.
In the midst of the chaos, the film closes in on the intimacy and passion between two stars and lets the rest of the world fall away.