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Drama - Musical

A Star is Born (2018)

Duration2h 16m
RatingsUK: 15, USA: R, Denmark: 11
Source of storyAny of the previous three interations of the story all apparently based on a story by William A. Wellman and Robert Carson
DirectorBradley Cooper
Writers/ScriptEric Roth, Bradley Cooper, Will Fetters
StarringLady Gaga, Bradley Cooper, Sam Elliot, Dave Chappelle, Alec Baldwin, Drena De Nero,
RatingsIMDb: 7.6/10 by 396,000 people.  Rotten Tomatoes: 90% by a stunning 534 reviewers. Review2view: 6/10.

Summary: Jackson Maine is a successful Country and Western star who privately has serious problems with alcohol and drugs. Late one night looking for booze he ends up in a gay club, where one of the acts is a young woman singing Edith Piaf. Jackson get to talk with her and convinces her to come to a performance he is giving, and once there she sings with him. This is a success and as a result Ally often joins him on stage, sometimes singing her own songs, resulting is an approach to her by a record producer who promotes her individual performance. Meanwhile Jack’s booze problem becomes worse, but in spite of it, he and Ally marry. From this point it is downhill all the way for Jack while Ally becomes a star. It cannot end well.

Content: Ally is seen naked in the blink of an eye, which the IMDb content review describes in detail. There is also some sex, but without nudity and a lot of drinking, Jackson being drunk most of the time. There are stage performance by Jackson with his band, duets with Ally and individual performances by Ally. Between shows he is mostly seen drunk sometimes critically so, resulting in him falling about on stage when Ally gets a Grammy, and  being unconscious at the side of roads.  Ally gradually changes from being a young woman who does not even wear make-up to the sort of stage persona we are familiar with.

A View: This film has been generally feted by the critics, many of them making it the best film of their year. It made a load of money and the CD of the soundtrack sold millions – literally. I had a bit of a problem with it maybe because I am not a Lady Gaga fan, and so even watching it in 2023, I was not familiar with the songs. Just one or two of the critics had a bit of a problem with the relationship between Jack and Ally. Right from the start she sees that he is an alcoholic, and marries him as he gets worse. And actually the presentation is unremittingly bleak. No matter what, I like a bit of humour. So a watch if you are a Lady Gaga fan.

I have reviewed a number of musicals on this site including La La Land, The Blues Brothers and one of my favourites of all time Elvis.

About Victor R Gibson

Author of this site three technical books and two novels


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