There are many things to love about the newest adaptation of A Star Is Born, but the most important part I noticed was that no scene felt unimportant to the story. Everything in the movie felt as if it was there to build towards its story and characters.
From the opening scene, it’s apparent that Bradley Cooper, in his directorial debut, is approaching the remake from a different perspective. First and foremost is the music which boasts masterfully written original music for the movie that plays to the strengths to both Lady Gaga and Cooper who’s voices naturally blend together in a surprisingly beautiful way. This adds an understated authenticity that simply sucks you into the complete experience of Jackson and Ally’s story as they navigate their relationship. This also speaks to another strength involving its expertly chosen cast. Gaga is phenomenal as Ally and has great chemistry with Cooper onscreen. Not to mention that for her first major role she exhibits the acting range of someone who’s been in the business for years. Many of her emotional scenes are played with such a deft touch that they gave me pause as if to wonder if Cooper was able to pull something out of her that went beyond the role and was rooted in reality as she’s dealt with the music business. Nevertheless, it worked and despite her being in uncharted acting waters she seemed incredibly at ease with the process which is portrayed onscreen.
While both Cooper and Gaga do the emotionally heavy lifting of the film, the real actor allowed to shine is Sam Elliott. Elliott plays, Bobby, Jackson’s older brother who is often at odds with Jackson throughout the film. His presence serves as the voice of reason in many situations and although his screen time is limited, Elliott makes every single word have such a strongly felt impact that he emerged as my favorite character of the film.
I could continue on about the countless things that A Star Is Born does right but I’m trying really hard not to. The music was perfect, the pacing exceptional, the debut of Cooper as a director could not have paid off better for his ongoing career and Gaga proves that she is more than just a former pop star-turned-actress and I’m praying that this will open up more opportunities for years to come.
I can say at this point in the year A Star Is Born is one of the best films I’ve seen all year and I see little in the way of it being forced out of my TOP 3 by the end of 2018. It’s just that good. Even if you’ve seen the previous iterations, I strongly urge you to see this one. Yes, it follows a similar storyline to the others, however, Cooper pays just enough attention to detail where just as you think you’ve figured out where it will go next it quickly finds new ways to surprise you along the journey. A Star Is Born is a wonderful theater experience and its success will now allow me to start clinging to hope that the Academy will rightfully recognize it come Oscar night.
A STAR IS BORN – 5 GARYS