While the classic melodrama may be a hoary old tale, Bradley Cooper, Lady Gaga and the tremendous supporting cast (led by Sam Elliot, Andrew Dice Clay and Dave Chappelle) retell it as well as one wants in a big-screen movie with its eye on an Oscar (or a dozen).
In the latest version, Cooper’s aging “rock star,” Jackson Maine, meets Gaga’s singer-songwriter Ally in a drag bar, where she is singing for and dreaming of her big break. Veteran audience members know where this sad, romantic tale is going. Jackson cannot stop drinking, especially as Ally’s star shines brighter than his own, and is dying the slow death of a living legend.
The appeal of A Star Is Born skews older; those who remember Kris Kristofferson and Barbra Streisand will enjoy it most. Who cares why Bradley Cooper decided his directorial debut should be the fourth big-screen remake of William Wellman’s tale when the performances are this sharp, the songs this catchy and the emotions this genuine?
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