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A Star is Born Review: Film is an Impressive Success!

Sometimes Love Can't Conquer All

Reviewed by on Oct 04, 2018
Rating: 5 Star Rating

Kidzworld reviews A Star is Born, the perfect film for you, your date or BFFs. Bradley Cooper and Lady Gaga are totally believable as a music star and his discovery. Can they make it as a couple?

By: Lynn Barker

A Star is Born is the fourth film version of this troubled love story (iconic star on the downslide discovers an amazing talent, falls in love with her and, as her star ascends, his goes down in flames). This time songwriter but shy singer Ally (Lady Gaga) only feels comfortable singing at a drag club pretending to be a guy dressed as a woman.

Jack is a successful rock starJack is a successful rock starCourtesy of Warner Bros. Pictures

This doesn’t fool super-famous singer Jackson Maine (Bradley Cooper) who, after his concert, drops into the club because he needs a drink. He is immediately drawn to the strange young woman. Can this encounter lead to a relationship and stardom for her?

(Warning: This film is rated “R” for language throughout, some sexuality/nudity and substance abuse).

At the club, Jack is smitten on seeing Ally performAt the club, Jack is smitten on seeing Ally performCourtesy of Warner Bros. Pictures

Chance Meeting

Popular singer Jackson Maine takes a slug of whiskey and goes onstage in a huge fan-packed arena. Although he is a giant hit, he needs more to drink so gets his chauffeur to drive him to a bar….any bar. He ends up at a drag queen club and is mesmerized by a supposed “guy” in drag singing the French tune “La Vie en Rose”. He realizes the singer is a girl and goes backstage to meet her and asks her to come for a drink with him.

Ally is star struck and attractedAlly is star struck and attractedCourtesy of Warner Bros. Pictures

They go out for a night on the town and he learns that she writes songs but doesn’t sing them because she’s been told that nobody likes the way she looks. He disagrees. She creates one for him on the spot. He shares sad things about his past including the fact that older brother, now manager Bobby (Sam Elliott) raised him.

Ally and friend make it to Jack's concertAlly and friend make it to Jack's concertCourtesy of Warner Bros. Pictures

Come to My Gig

Jack takes Ally to her home (she still lives with her dad) and asks her to his next gig where we learn that Jack is losing his hearing! His brother Bobby tells him it won’t get better and drinking doesn’t help. With dad’s (Andrew Dice Clay) approval (he thinks Jackson might help her career), Ally goes to the concert where she is treated like royalty. Jack has done an arrangement of her song and, after much protest on her part, she comes on stage to sing it with him. They are a big hit! Afterwards looks like they will hook up but, Jackson passes out and Bobby has to put him to bed. Evidently, this happens a lot but Ally and Jack make up for it in the morning.

Bobby is worried about younger brother JackBobby is worried about younger brother JackCourtesy of Warner Bros. Pictures

On the Road

Jack takes now girlfriend Ally on the road with him. In Arizona, Jack and Bobby have a huge fight over his substance abuse and their past family history and Bobby leaves. Ally doesn’t like seeing Jack use drugs and drink before a performance. She keeps singing with Jack and does some singing on the tour. Her popularity attracts a record company and a big record deal. Ally gains controlling manager/producer Rez (Rafi Gavron) who leads her in the wrong direction, adding dancers to her act and a more “pop” tune feel. Jack hates it. It’s not her! The couple shares a house but are separated by her having to record and album and his tour. His ears are getting worse.

Ally and Jack duet on the song she wroteAlly and Jack duet on the song she wroteCourtesy of Warner Bros. Pictures

Getting Hitched

Jackson disappears and Ally tracks him to the Memphis home of his old musical buddy Noodles (Dave Chappelle) where he is in worse shape than usual. She’s worried. He sobers up enough to make a ring out of a guitar string and propose. They get married as Ally’s career takes off bigtime. She changes her look and Jack tells her to “Dig deep in her soul and tell your truth”. She’s gone way off track. Her sound is no longer her own but she is nominated for several Grammys and, as Jack’s career wanes, they fight, he goes off the rails and apologizes to her.

Ally and Jack share married life with their dog CharlieAlly and Jack share married life with their dog CharlieCourtesy of Warner Bros. Pictures

Embarrassing Moment

Jack is asked to play guitar at the Grammys but only as backup for some new kid. He’s upset, drinks more than ever and, when she wins, joins her on stage, pisses himself and passes out in front of everyone. Ally loves him and freaks out. He goes to rehab and she moves back with her dad. He admits that he tried suicide at age 13 and his dad, an alcoholic, didn’t even notice. He is released after months and writes a great love song for her. He cries as he apologizes for his behavior. She still loves him.

Ally still loves Jack despite the challengesAlly still loves Jack despite the challengesCourtesy of Warner Bros. Pictures

Ditch Him!

After the horrible embarrassment on TV, Ally’s manager Rez insists that Ally can’t take Jack on tour. In fact, she shouldn’t be seen with him at all. Although Jack has cleaned up and also apologized to brother Bobby who has joined him again, Rez tells him he is ruining Ally’s career and shouldn’t be anywhere near her. Jackson is hurt but thinks it is true. Can he ever part from Ally? If he leaves, what will it do to her? How will this troubled relationship end?

Ally's fame growsAlly's fame growsCourtesy of Warner Bros. Pictures

Wrapping Up

A Star is Born is not for younger tweens. There is a load of substance abuse and foul language but that is a necessary part of telling the story of a popular singer’s downfall. You should make your filmgoing choice as you and your parents see fit.

Jack tries to convince Ally to come on stageJack tries to convince Ally to come on stageCourtesy of Warner Bros. Pictures

That said, Lady Gaga’s acting as Ally is a revelation. Whether you are one of her “Little Monsters” (fans) or not,….If you liked her in TV’s creepy “American Horror Story”, that was just the tip of the iceberg. Underneath that and her wild publicity appearances as a singer, lies one heck of an amazing actress. Bradley Cooper also directs the film and his work is sensitive and “real” making the most of both funny and emotional moments. He hones right in on just how soul-stripping the starmaker machine can be whether artists are on the way up, or down.

Noodles (Dave Chappelle) tries to help old pal JackNoodles tries to help old pal JackCourtesy of Warner Bros. Pictures

Some great laughs come out of the lipsticked mouths of performing drag queens who are friends of Gaga’s character Ally. Other chuckles come from moments we all may have experienced. Dialogue throughout is very “real” and effective.  Gaga and Bradley have great chemistry and you will be “shipping” for Ally and Jackson to keep it together.

Ally's dad wants the best for herAlly's dad wants the best for herCourtesy of Warner Bros. Pictures

Songs, some written by Bradley and Gaga in association with others, are almost all really good. The catchy yet sad “Shallow” is already a chart hit. It’s cool to know that Gaga and Bradley performed their music live and aren’t lip-syncing in the movie.

Recovered, Jack writes a love song for AllyRecovered, Jack writes a love song for AllyCourtesy of Warner Bros. Pictures

If you are mature enough to deal with the R-rating, you can’t go wrong going to see A Star is Born. It is destined to win some Oscars and is one great time at the movies. You’ll laugh, you’ll cry and want to go buy the soundtrack. The movie is completely “lit” with a very warm fire.  We go five stars.

A Star is Born Movie Rating: 5

A Star is Born Movie PosterCourtesy of Warner Bros. Pictures

See A Star is Born in theaters Friday, October 5th!

We Want to Hear From You!

Have you ever seen any of the other A Star is Born films on video? Are you a Lady Gaga or Bradley Cooper fan? Do you hope someone will discover you and your special talents? Share below with a comment or see the film and write your own review on your Kidzworld profile page!