A Star is Born hits the high notes

Tweed Daily News - - PULSE - — Wen­lei Ma

IS THERE a movie that is more hyped up this year than A Star is Born?

The third re­make of a clas­sic Hol­ly­wood flick, the Bradley Cooper and Lady Gaga film is an im­pres­sive spec­ta­cle that hits most of the emo­tional highs and lows au­di­ences want from a movie that prom­ises to take you on a melo­dra­matic jour­ney.

Not melo­dra­matic in a bad way, melo­dra­matic in that ev­ery­thing is height­ened – the tri­umphs are soar­ing, the tragedies are crush­ing. Mu­si­cals are not sub­tle beasts.

Is it per­fect, the most amaz­ing movie you’ll see this year? No, but it is pretty great.

Bradley Cooper plays Jack­son Maine, a coun­try­rock star who com­mands adu­la­tion but whose star is on the wane after years of bat­tling drug and al­co­hol ad­dic­tion, as well as the hear­ing con­di­tion tin­ni­tus.

Com­ing off a roar­ing gig, he goes to a bar where he sees Ally (Lady Gaga) per­form­ing a soul­ful ren­di­tion of Edith Piaf’s

La Vie En Rose. Ally is an as­pir­ing singer who, de­spite her ob­vi­ous tal­ent, has been re­jected by count­less la­bels be­cause she doesn’t have the right “look”.

Jack is im­me­di­ately en­chanted and while she’s ini­tially hes­i­tant, they bond over an evening – she singing her songs for him in a su­per­mar­ket carpark, him mag­ne­tised by her pres­ence.

By the next night, she’s on stage at his next con­cert, belt­ing out the song she sang for him in the carpark, now fully ar­ranged.

It’s A Star is Born’s most ex­ul­tant mo­ment.

That’s also the mo­ment Ally is “dis­cov­ered”.

The first hour of the 2 hours 15 min­utes A Star is

Born is tran­scen­dent; it’s ut­terly amaz­ing, like a drug tak­ing you on the most mar­vel­lous high.

The back half is dif­fer­ent. It loses its dy­namism as it starts to drag.

While im­per­fect, A Star is Born is a sat­is­fy­ing and emo­tion­ally evoca­tive epic.


EMO­TIONAL FILM: Bradley Cooper and Lady Gaga in a scene from the movie A Star is Born.

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