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A Star Is Born

2018  136 MN


A Star Is Born on IMDb
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Bradley Cooper

Seasoned musician Jackson Maine discovers — and falls in love with — struggling artist Ally. She has just about given up on her dream to make it big as a singer — until Jack coaxes her into the spotlight. But even as Ally's career takes off, the personal side of their relationship is breaking down, as Jack fights an ongoing battle with his own internal demons.

 Release Date

October 3, 2018


2h16m (136 min)


$ 36,000,000


$ 433,888,866

 Top Billed Cast

 Lady Gaga
 Ally Campana
 Bradley Cooper
 Jackson Maine
 Sam Elliott
 Bobby Maine
 Andrew Dice Clay
 Lorenzo Campana
 Rafi Gavron
 Rez Gavron
 Anthony Ramos

 Written by

Bradley Cooper Screenplay
Will Fetters Screenplay
Eric Roth Screenplay
Frank Pierson Original Film Writer
Moss Hart Original Film Writer
John Gregory Dunne Original Film Writer
Joan Didion Original Film Writer
Robert Carson Original Story
William A. Wellman Original Story



Lady Gaga
  Ally Campana
Bradley Cooper
  Jackson Maine
Sam Elliott
  Bobby Maine
Andrew Dice Clay
  Lorenzo Campana
Rafi Gavron
  Rez Gavron
Anthony Ramos
Dave Chappelle
  George "Noodles" Stone
Alec Baldwin
  Alec Baldwin
Marlon Williams
  Marlon Williams
Brandi Carlile
  Brandi Carlile
Ron Rifkin
Barry Shabaka Henley
  Little Feet
Michael D. Roberts
Michael Harney
Rebecca Field
Willam Belli
Greg Grunberg
  Phil (Jack's Driver)
D.J. 'Shangela' Pierce
  Drag Bar Emcee
Eddie Griffin
Drena De Niro
  Paulette Stone
Jacob Schick
  Bryan (Catering Manager)
Gabe Fazio
  Music Awards Presenter
Matthew Libatique
Robert S. Wilhelm Jr.
  Music Awards Announcer
Lukas Nelson
Anthony LoGerfo
Alberto Bof
Corey McCormick
Tato Melgar
Don Was
  Super Group Bassist / Leader
Victor Indrizzo
  Super Group Drummer
George Doering
  Super Group Guitarist
Michael Bearden
  Super Group Keyboardist
Lenny Castro
  Super Group Percussionist
Chris Kelly
  Chris Kelly
Don Roy King
  Don Roy King
Greg Scarnici
  Greg Scarnici
Christopher Martinez
  SNL Dancer
Amanda Balen
  SNL Dancer
China Taylor
  Concert Dancer
Hunter Goligoski
  Concert Fan (uncredited)


Bradley Cooper
Basil Iwanyk
  Executive Producer
Will Fetters
Bill Gerber
Bradley Cooper
Bradley Cooper
Scott Trimble
  Location Manager
Nate Taylor
  Location Manager
Jay Cassidy
Karen Murphy
  Production Design
Eric Roth
Matthew Libatique
  Director of Photography
Frank Pierson
  Original Film Writer
Moss Hart
  Original Film Writer
John Gregory Dunne
  Original Film Writer
Joan Didion
  Original Film Writer
Erin Benach
  Costume Designer
Lynette Howell Taylor
Todd Phillips
Jason Ruder
  Supervising Music Editor
Dean A. Zupancic
  Sound Re-Recording Mixer
Tom Ozanich
  Sound Re-Recording Mixer
Alan Robert Murray
  Supervising Sound Editor
Ve Neill
  Makeup Department Head
Frank Torres
  Stunt Coordinator
Bob Dohrmann
  Unit Production Manager
Heidi Pascoe
Dean Bailey
Bruce Jones
  Visual Effects Supervisor
Michele Ziegler
  First Assistant Director
Ben Hernandez Bray
Xanthus Valan
  Second Assistant Director
Mary Vernieu
Heather Parry
  Executive Producer
Lindsay Graham Ahanonu
Bradley Rubin
  Supervising Art Director
Bob Dohrmann
Bradley Cooper
  Additional Music
Ravi D. Mehta
  Executive Producer
John Holmes
  First Assistant "B" Camera
Jeff Stewart
  Second Assistant "B" Camera
Lisa Dennis
  Post Production Supervisor
Julia Michels
  Music Supervisor
P. Scott Sakamoto
  Steadicam Operator
Sue Kroll
  Executive Producer
Matthew Horan
  Art Direction
Jon Peters
Brittany Bradford
  Assistant Art Director
Chris Moseley
  "B" Camera Operator
Julianne Jordan
  Music Supervisor
P. Scott Sakamoto
  "A" Camera Operator
Michael Rapino
  Executive Producer
Clay Enos
  Still Photographer
Amy Lederman
  Makeup Artist
Mandi Ann Ruiz
  Makeup Artist
Kai Blomberg
  Set Dresser
Brandon Fox
  Set Dresser
Al Lewis
  Set Dresser
Roland N. Thai
  Sound Effects Editor
Matthew Jerome
  Set Costumer
Mitchell Ray Kenney
  Costume Supervisor
Ryan Watson
  Set Decoration
Ed W. Marsh
  Visual Effects Editor
Jacob Eaton
  Visual Effects Coordinator
Craig Dollinger
  Boom Operator
Lyn Matsuda Norton
  Script Supervisor
Thomas DeRose
  Rigging Gaffer
Tana Dubbe
  Key Grip
James Coffin
  Best Boy Grip
John Mang
  Dolly Grip
William Clouter
  Dolly Grip
Charley Gilleran
  Key Rigging Grip
Kevin Fahey
  Rigging Grip
Lori McCoy-Bell
  Hair Department Head
Joy Zapata
  Key Hair Stylist
Dawn Victoria Dudley
Bruce J. Samia
Maria Lorenzana
  Key Costumer
Michael Sexton
  Property Master
Greg Gonzalez
  Assistant Property Master
Larz Anderson
  Special Effects Coordinator
Kira Roessler
  Supervising ADR Editor
Kira Roessler
  Dialogue Editor
Curt Schulkey
  Dialogue Editor
Frederick H. Stahly
  Dialogue Editor
Michelle Pazer
  Dialogue Editor
Michael Dressel
  Foley Supervisor
Christopher Flick
  Foley Editor
Willard Overstreet
  Foley Editor
Christian Wenger
  Assistant Sound Editor
Thomas J. O'Connell
  ADR Mixer
Dan O'Connell
  Foley Artist
John T. Cucci
  Foley Artist
James Ashwill
  Foley Mixer
Richard Duarte
  Foley Mixer
John Guentner
  Foley Mixer
Michyl-Shannon Quilty
  Production Coordinator
Laura Peña
  Assistant Production Coordinator
Kelly A. Snyder
  Production Accountant
Steve Goldstein
  Payroll Accountant
George A. Sack
  Transportation Coordinator
Nathan Hardcastle
  Transportation Captain
Jonathan Bobbitt
Susannah Carradine
  Art Department Coordinator
Joe Ondrejko
  Construction Coordinator
Raylin Sabo
  Casting Associate
Heidi Falconer
  Unit Publicist
Patty Rhinehart
  Casting Assistant
Matthew R. Milan
  Second Second Assistant Director
Bruce Jones
  Second Unit Director
Elizabeth Kemp
  In Memory Of
Robert Carson
  Original Story
William A. Wellman
  Original Story
Andrew Wyatt
Lady Gaga
Heidi Pascoe
  Stunt Double


 New Quote


 New Review

Half excellent, half boring
By DJ on March 3, 2019

I usually don't watch trailers of films I plan to watch. This was the case with "A Star Is Born". I was really looking forward to see the grand cinema debut from Lady Gaga, a great artist far better and deeper than what many would think.
Ironically, when watching the trailer just after watching the film for the first time, I think it shows exactly the beauty of the film, as well as its main flaw.
The first official trailer focuses almost 100% on the first part of the film, the one where Jackson, portrayed by Bradley Cooper, meets Ally (Lady Gaga). There is a true beauty in their first meeting and their ongoing romance. I really loved it.
But then, as soon as Ally meets her producer, the rest of the film fells slightly out of place. We have all seen so many times the fake scenes of producers forcing artists to jump into the show business.
It's a shame, because the film could really have been great, unfortunately, I could not enjoy fully the second part. It's as if we coudln't scratch the surface and go beyond it.

I give it 6 out of 10. Very good.


It feels silly to even qualify this one. LADY GAGA. BRADLEY COOPER (who can sing and direct, apparently). You don’t even need to have any info about the plot to know that this a priority must-see.

But, in case you’re wondering, it’s also based on one of the most iconic (and beloved) movie musicals of the 20th century (it’s been re-made a bunch of times, but none was better than the Judy Garland-helmed version) and in addition to all the Gaga-Cooper creative brilliance, the screenplay is also co-written by Eric Roth, the Oscar-winning screenwriter who once compared life to a box of chocolates in Forest Gump (he modified the novel’s original — and far less quotable — line, “Being an idiot is no box of chocolates”)


Very interesting. As soon as I saw the trailer, I wanted to see it. I work in the professional cv services, and through the big traffic there is no time for going to the cinema, so I will wait for the film to appear in good quality on the Internet. But the trailer is exciting. Everything I love: romance, love and music!


Lady Gaga clearly is (and has been for a very long time) a fantastic singer, and has made massive strides as an actor as well, but I _really_ did not enjoy this.

Bradley Cooper has clearly been studying at the Jeff Bridges' School of Being Completely Fucking Incomprehensible for this one. Maybe he was just trying to lend some believebility to the idea that he and Sam Elliot were brothers, I don't know (If that is the case, it failed miserably). Which I mean, whatever, it's his movie, he do that character whichever way he wants, but I don't appreciate it myself. Honestly the only thing in this, the fourth iteration of _A Star Is Born_ that I **did** appreciate at all was the first 15 minutes and the last 15 minutes. I didn't love those segments by any stretch, but I liked them at least partly. Not so for what came in between.

I can definitely support _A Star is Born's_ two audio-related Oscars, and maybe, _maybe_ even see my way to understanding the Best Actress nomination for Gaga, but beyond that, I don't follow the logic at all.

_Final rating:★★ - Had some things that appeal to me, but a poor finished product._


Lady Gaga clearly is (and has been for a very long time) a fantastic singer, and has made massive strides as an actor as well, but I **really** did not enjoy this.

Bradley Cooper has clearly been studying at the Jeff Bridges' School of Being Completely Fucking Incomprehensible for this one. Maybe he was just trying to lend some believebility to the idea that he and Sam Elliot were brothers, I don't know (If that is the case, it failed miserably). Which I mean, whatever, it's his movie, he do that character whichever way he wants, but I don't appreciate it myself. Honestly the only thing in this, the fourth iteration of _A Star Is Born_ that I **did** appreciate at all was the first 15 minutes and the last 15 minutes. I didn't love those segments by any stretch, but I liked them at least partly. Not so for what came in between.

I can definitely support _A Star is Born's_ two audio-related Oscars, and maybe, **maybe** even see my way to understanding the Best Actress nomination for Gaga, but beyond that, I don't follow the logic at all.

_Final rating:★★ - Had some things that appeal to me, but a poor finished product._

Stephen Campbell

_**A strong directorial debut**_

> _I always knew that I wanted to direct, but I also knew that I could only direct something that I had a point of view about, a story that I want to tell, something deep down. Some people said, why don't you direct a pilot or a commercial or something just so you could learn, and I thought that scares the hell out of me, because I don't even know where I would put the camera._

- Bradley Cooper; "The _Star Is Born_ Scene That Scared Bradley Cooper" (Krista Smith); _Vanity Fair_ (October 1, 2018)

_A Star is Born_ was met with a rapturous reception at its Venice Film Festival première earlier this year, and has since gone on to receive near universal critical acclaim (90% on Rotten Tomatoes at time of writing), with much speculation as to its staying-power come award season. And whilst I liked it, and found a great deal to admire, I didn't love it. At least I didn't love all of it.

The original _A Star is Born_ was made for Selznick International Pictures by William A. Wellman in 1937 and told the story of aspiring Hollywood actress Esther Blodgett (Janet Gaynor). Discovered and mentored by one-time star, but now fading alcoholic, Norman Maine (Fredric March), against all odds, Esther quickly becomes a huge success. When Maine proposes, she says yes, but only on the condition that he give up drinking. He agrees, and they elope and marry. As their careers continue to move along opposite trajectories, he secretly begins drinking again, and when she wins the Academy Award for Best Actress, he ruins her speech by drunkenly storming the stage, prompting a stay in a sanatorium. Upon his release, Esther determines to help him face his demons no matter the cost, leading to much emotional trauma and tragedy. Possibly based on the marriage of Barbara Stanwyck and Frank Fay, and the life and death of John Bowers, the storyline for the film was so similar to RKO's 1932 film _What Price Hollywood?_ that Selznick expected to be sued by RKO (although they weren't). _What Price_ was directed by George Cukor, and based on a story by Adela Rogers St. Johns inspired by the marriage of Colleen Moore and John McCormick, and the life and death of Tom Forman. Although both films were critical successes, _What Price_ was a box office flop, and _A Star is Born_ was a huge hit. It was first remade as a musical by (ironically) George Cukor in 1954, starring Judy Garland and James Mason, and with a virtually identical plot. A second remake followed in 1976, directed by Frank Pierson, which told the story of aspiring singer Esther Hoffman (Barbra Streisand) and fading alcoholic rock-star John Howard (Kris Kristofferson).

The latest version was originally set to be directed by Clint Eastwood back in 2011, starring Beyoncé Knowles and either Leonardo DiCaprio, Tom Cruise, or Will Smith. As the project languished in development hell following Beyoncé's pregnancy, Eastwood approached Esperanza Spalding and Bradley Cooper but the project never got going. By 2015, Eastwood had moved on, replaced by Cooper himself, who remained as leading actor (he would also co-produce and co-write, with Eric Roth and Will Fetters). In 2016, Cooper cast Stefani Germanotta (aka Lady Gaga), and the film began shooting the following year.

Sticking pretty close to the beats of the previous three versions, the film tells the story of Jackson Maine (Cooper), a fading drug-addicted and alcoholic country and western singer suffering from tinnitus and slowly going deaf, who is just about held together by his tour manager and elder brother, Bobby (Sam Elliott). After a show, Maine ducks into the first bar he finds, where he sees Ally Campana (Gaga) singing a sultry version of "La Vie en rose" (1946). Impressed by her talent, Maine goes backstage to meet her, and they spend the night talking, during which time she tells him of her dreams to be a professional singer/songwriter. Although he invites her to his next show, she has no intention of going, much to the chagrin of her father, Lorenzo (Andrew Dice Clay), a limo driver who is adamant he was a better singer than Sinatra. When Maine's driver arrives for her, she tells him she isn't going, but he refuses to leave without her, and she soon finds herself on Maine's private jet with backstage passes to the show. During his performance, he unexpectedly invites her on stage to sing one of her own songs, and the crowd eat it up. With her performance getting millions of views on YouTube, she joins Maine on tour, and they soon begin a romantic relationship. As Ally's popularity grows, she is approached by Rez (Rafi Gavron), a music producer who offers her a record deal. Maine and Ally are later married, but as Rez moves her away from her pseudo-unplugged origins towards a more manufactured style of pop, Maine begins to voice his disapproval, whilst increasingly indulging in drink and drugs.

To begin with what I disliked about the film. Firstly, the first half is markedly superior to the second, which, I think, comes down to pacing issues and editing rhythm. Whereas the first half really takes its time in setting up the characters and their relationship (it's nearly an hour before their first kiss), the second half often feels rushed, offering almost a highlight reel of events spread out over many months, without really giving any of them time to breathe.

Secondly, I had some problems with the character of Maine. As is the case with all previous versions of the story, although the woman is ostensibly the lead, the man's troubles are the focus of the narrative, with the template established in 1937 (or 1932) inviting the audience to pity the man more than admire the woman. But with Cooper writing, producing, directing and starring, this can come across as a little self-indulgent in ways which weren't an issue in previous versions. Look, for example, at the number of close-ups and shirtless scenes Maine has, with the film going to some lengths to ensure we never think really badly of him despite his, at times, utterly reprehensible behaviour. Additionally, Cooper's Maine is the least convincing and wantonly self-destructive drunk of any of the four _Star_ male leads, with only one scene where he genuinely seems to be completely hammered (although, to be fair, it's a cracking scene).

Another issue, and one which I totally recognise I'm in the minority regarding, is that I found Gaga's performance a mixed bag. I hated her work in _American Horror Story: Hotel_ (2015-2016), where I thought her sultry and seductive vampire was a mass of clichés and overacting, although critics and audiences seemed to really like her. She's a lot better here, but still nothing spectacular, essentially doing a Barbara Streisand impression (albeit a decent one). Additionally, her performance doesn't really go any way towards showing us why this young woman would want to be with an alcoholic twice her age (apart from the fact that he's good for her career). Gaga never lets us see her fall in love with him, despite the framework being right there in the script, but neither does she play the role in such a way as to suggest a cynical exploitation of Maine.

The gender politics are also (somewhat) troubling; firmly rooted in the 1937 (or 1932) original, Ally is controlled and manipulated by men from start to finish (primarily, Lorenzo, Maine, and Rez), and the entire story is predicated on the fact that she needs a man's help to enable her to make her breakthrough. In this sense, it might have been interesting to reverse the genders, and instead have the film tell the story of a fading, substance-abusing older woman mentoring a hungry up-and-coming young man. It would probably be automatically criticised by the type of men who downvote anything gender progressive, but it would have been an interesting modern spin on an old story.

To counter that suggestion, however, and move onto what I liked about the film, it could be argued that by effectively maintaining the themes of the previous iterations of the story (and, in relation to the 1976 version, actually returning to plot points which were ill-advisedly discarded), the film is simply embracing its histrionic Classical Hollywood genesis, unapologetically retelling a traditional story in much the same manner as it was originally conceived. And with that in mind, the film is undoubtedly both an effective melodrama and a Classic Hollywood escapist fantasy.

Which is not to say it tries nothing new, or never goes left when you expect it to go right. For example, the film also surprised me in relation to Ally's new style, as never once does it imply that this style is any less authentic than it was under Maine's tutelage, or that his is somehow more "truthful" than hers. After she has her hair dyed, Ally looks in a mirror and says, "_it doesn't even look like me_", and I fully expected this to be the beginning of an arc which satirised what the industry has cost her, pointing out that the only way she could make it as an artist was by abandoning the art that meant anything to her, in favour of something synthetic. But that doesn't happen. Her new style (which becomes closer and closer to the real Lady Gaga as the film goes along) is presented as simply different from Maine's, in the way that his would have been different from those who came before him. If anything, the film presents the whole thing as a fairly organic evolution, with a lyric of what appears to be Maine's best-known song telling us, "_maybe it's time to let the old ways die._"

Another aspect of the film which worked well is that there was genuine sexual chemistry between Cooper and Gaga. Sure, having a good script helps tremendously in this sense, but just because there is chemistry on the page, doesn't necessarily mean there'll be chemistry on the screen - think of the wet fish of a relationship that is Kit Harington and Emilia Clarke's romance on _Game of Thrones_ – I've seen more chemistry between relations (pun intended). And although I do have some issues with the performances, the element of sexual attraction is very much there for all to see. Also on the subject of acting, Sam Elliott and Andrew Dice Clay steal pretty much every scene they're in.

Copper's direction is also pretty impressive, giving the rock world _milieu_ a sense of lived-in verisimilitude – from the drugs, to the living out of limos and hotel rooms, to the whirlwind nature of it all, the film presents perhaps the most vibrantly realistic portrayal of the music industry since Cameron Crowe's _Almost Famous_ (2000). Visually, Cooper's direction is functional (more the laconic style of Clint Eastwood than the hyperkinetic style of Cooper's frequent collaborator, David O. Russell), never drawing attention to itself, and allowing instead the camera to be a fairly passive observer. For the most part, Cooper as director is invisible, which makes sense, given the nature of the story (the ominous nooses seen hanging above Maine on a billboard are a little over the top, however). He also avoids the type of clichés we usually see in this kind of story. For example, to suggest the increasing success of a character, a standard music film will undoubtedly feature either a single scene or a montage of hasty autograph signings, a scene or two of an increasingly rabid fanbase, and at least one, but usually more, chaotic press conferences. Cooper features none of these, relying instead on scenes which illustrate to us Ally's popularity in a more organic manner (for example, we know how successful she has become when she is asked to perform on _Saturday Night Live_).

Yes, Cooper's trying to make a gritty version of one of the most glitzy show-business narratives, which might strike one as an oxymoron, but, for the most part, he strikes a fine balance between over-the-top showbiz fantasy, populated by larger-than-life characters and cartoonish histrionics, and a more grounded and intimate romance imparting universal truths about the sacrifices one may have to make for the person one loves. To cite just one example of how well he handles this dichotomy, the scenes which introduce the two leads are as far as you can imagine from razzmatazz – Maine is shown alone in a green room popping pills before staggering onto stage, and Ally is shown in a toilet cubicle breaking up with her boyfriend over the phone. These two scenes set the tone nicely, and are a credit to Cooper's directorial choices.

All things considered, _A Star is Born_ is an impressive directorial debut, and is probably the best of the four versions of the story (it's certainly better than the 1937 and 1976 versions). Signalling the advent of Lady Gaga as a leading lady, the film also marks the arrival of an interesting new directorial voice. I didn't think it was as good as a lot of critics and fans have made it out to be, finding it a little too disposable at times, but I certainly enjoyed it, and I'm looking forward to whatever it is that Cooper does next.


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Chocolate Lagoon, a Bad Lip Reading of Shallow
 March 24, 2019

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Lady Gaga & Bradley Cooper Performance Hits 25M Views
 March 2, 2019

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Are you ready for A Star is Born?
 August 19, 2018

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