A Star Is Born

A Star Is Born Hits: All the Right Notes

We have all experienced that one concert.

It awakens your spirit and makes you want to run away and escape the pressures of societal norms.

It makes the night feel everlasting and the impending morning schedule nonexistent.

Now imagine the lead vocalist of this scenario.

In the case of A Star is Born, that soul-awakening entity is none other than Jackson, played by Bradley Cooper.

I know, it surprised me too.

A Star is Born follows the exhilerating rollercoaster of fame and love.

Jackson is a hard-headed guitarist wrapped up in the world of sex, drugs, and rock and roll.

On the other hand, Ally, played by Lady Gaga, is a determined waitress that spends her evenings belting out french ballads in a nightclub alongside spunky drag queens.

After a wild show, Jackson stumbles into his limousine and spots a bar.

Jackson’s interest is peaked immediately as he enters the eccentric scene, meeting a friend of Ally’s.

Shortly after, Ally steps onto the stage, clad in risqué garments, and drawn on eyebrows, performing the French ballad “La Vie en Rose.”

Jackson is instantly intrigued, and the moment they lock eyes, both know their lives will change forever.

When their worlds collide, a musical and romantic partnership ensues.

Spurred from several adaptations, including the 1976 classic starring Barbra Streisand and Kris Kristofferson, this latest version had rather spacious shoes to fill.

However, Cooper and Gaga give the modern generation a taste of the classic adaptations that came before it, fill older viewers with nostalgia, and put fresh faces on inspiration.

During the show, I even  heard someone say, “He sounds just like Kristofferson!”

The execution of this film in its entirety was captivating and intense.

Jackson and Ally embody the awkwardness and humor that comes with a budding romance.

Cooper directed the film and starred as a lead, infusing his comedic roots into the storyline.

Ironic scenes such as Jackson doing cocaine in his dressing room then proceeding to perform at a pharmaceutical convention, exemplify the dark humor that attracts many viewers.

Other more lighthearted scenes include Jackson taping a bag of frozen peas to Ally’s hand to help her bruised hand.

Gaga’s acting was stupendous, completely recreating the feelings of terror and anxiety when faced head on with the things that you fear.

The actress emulated how it would feel to have your dreams come true, all the while slowly falling in love. 

Just like the rapid changes Ally endures, the chaotic camerawork by Matthew Libatique was completely intentional; making the audience feel as if they were in the large waves of people singing to the music.

The scenery is breathtaking, from the spot-on depictions of a rock concert to the desolate roads on an obscure highway.

When Jackson arrives back home in Arizona, he embraces Ally near an abandoned gas station, surrounded by beautiful skies and relentless wind brushing against their faces.

It seems as if the world is entirely their own.

While the camerawork makes us feel like we’re standing in the pit of Jackson’s concert, the music will make you tap your feet and want to surf through the crowds of people lost in the bliss of an epic time.

The start of the film is remarkable, beginning with Jackson’s “Black Eyes” and a bass that will electrify your whole body. It is the true essence of rock and roll.

I was waiting for that “Evergreen” moment, but Cooper’s direction took a different turn, in the form of “Shallow.”

This song was the saving grace for the musical score.

It proved Cooper’s ability to stand next to Gaga and have just as strong of a musical presence, all the while creating the most standout musical collaboration of the year.

The irony of the performance is that we all are aware of the powerhouse that is Lady Gaga.

From her raspy voice that can strongly deliver any musical genre, to her memorable wardrobe (that includes meat dresses), Gaga takes a huge step out of her comfort zone in the role of Ally.

The actress bares her insecurities and becomes vulnerable with the world.

Gaga is almost telling us that this is who she is behind the fame; a woman who still gets angry at her boss or gasps for air when laughing with a good friend.

Meanwhile, Jackson is a worldwide superstar who has thousands attend his shows, all the while coasting through it clutching to the alcohol and drugs.

While there appears to be a stark difference between the two, their musical chemistry makes them become one.

If you adore past versions of A Star is Born or just want to see a quintessential love story for the ages, you were born to see this flick.

For those who want to relive the feeling of being in an electric concert crowd, here’s your chance.

Jackson and Ally’s talents will make you feel like you’re back in the pit, but at a ticket price eighty percent cheaper.

PHOTO TAKEN from Variety