A Star is Born follows Ally, a singer-songwriter who works as a waitress to make ends meet. She meets famous singer, Jackson Maine, and they fall in love. On a whim, Ally hits the road with Jackson and eventually surpasses him in the music scene.
This release is the third remake of the original 1937 film. Each film roughly follows a similar story, but ends up as a product reflective of its time and director. This version originally planned to feature Clint Eastwood and Beyoncé, but Beyoncé’s pregnancy led her to leave the film and production stagnated afterwards. Eventually, Bradley Cooper took over the directorial role and Lady Gaga joined as the leading female part.
As a whole, this film is very well-made, especially considering that this is Cooper’s directorial debut and Gaga’s first leading role in a movie. Their chemistry throughout the film is palpable, and the raw emotion they convey is moving and heartbreaking.
A personal criticism would be the surprising lack of focus on Ally’s character development as she eventually becomes a celebrity. Although Ally’s choices and story are the driving forces of the movie, the film essentially portrays Jackson as the main character. Jackson and Ally’s relationship is viewed through his perspective, limiting the audience from getting to know what’s going through Ally’s head.
The real highlight of the film is its soundtrack, which ranges from blues to country rock to pop. The evolution of the songs mirror the progression of Ally and Jackson’s relationship, particularly with the meaning of the lyrics. As their relationship devolves, the music does too. Gaga’s vocals remain effortless throughout the entire soundtrack, showcasing her genre-breaking range. Cooper, who is by no means an established singer, surprisingly holds his own weight and nicely contrasts Gaga’s clear, powerful timbre with his gritty country drawl.
The film is free to all UCSD undergraduate students with valid student ID. Doors open at 7:00 p.m. and the screening starts at 7:30 p.m.
Arun Dhingra is a Staff Writer for The Triton.