Lady Gaga and Bradley Cooper in reversed roles: In this heartwarming tale about the ups and downs of rising to fame in the music industry, Cooper proves that he can sing and Gaga proves that she can act…
About singers and dreamers
Jackson Maine (Bradley Cooper) is a famous country singer, but also a secret alcoholic and drug addict.
After a show in California, he ends up in a drag bar, where he sees a performance by Ally (Lady Gaga), then an undiscovered waitress and singer-songwriter, who sings her interpretation of the French chanson "La vie en rose".
Jackson is immediately smitten – both with Ally's talent and Ally herself. So, he invites her to his next show.
Over time, Jackson and Ally grow closer, start a romantic relationship and even get married. But then Ally gets discovered by a talent agent and becomes super famous. While Amy's star is rising, Jackson's is on a free fall.
As the two start fighting more often and he finds it harder and harder to battle against his demons, will their love be strong enough to overcome the downsides of fame?
The Film Locations
Although I thought at the beginning that this film looks like it is set in New York City (Lady Gaga's real-life home), A Star Is Born was almost exclusively shot in California.
Among the film locations in Los Angeles are the Super A Foods store on 2924 Division St. (Jack gets Ally frozen peas to ice her hand after she had been involved in a fight) and the Greek Theatre on Griffith Park, 4730 Crystal Springs Drive.
Other Californian film locations included Santa Clarita and Riverside County.
My favourite film location in A Star Is Born was the scene, in which Jackson and Ally talk on a balcony just before she heads out to one of her concerts. While we see them standing on this balcony, there is a really nice panorama of a sunny Californian city and a huge billboard of the rising star Ally in the background.
Being a film about two musicians, there were of course several scenes, in which either Gaga, Cooper or both sing. The festival scenes were shot at the star-studded Coachella Festival in Indio, California and, as the only film location outside the US, at the famous Glastonbury Festival in Somerset, England.
An acting star is born!
I have been a huge fan of Lady Gaga ever since she first shot to fame as a (hugely talented) singer about ten years ago. I loved almost all of her songs and her often very artistic music videos, in which she already proved that she has a talent for acting. I also enjoyed watching her Netflix documentary Gaga: Five Foot Two (2017), which provided a very close look at the sensitive girl that's behind Lady Gaga.
With her first feature film A Star Is Born, she definitely proved what a great actress she is. Although it was somewhat strange to see the "normal Lady Gaga" or Stefani Germanotta, which is her real name, with a totally normal haircut in light brown instead of her usual platinum blond wig. Plus, according to the lady herself, first-time director Bradley Cooper had given the instruction that she should wear almost no makeup in A Star Is Born.
Personally, I think that Bradley Cooper looks a lot more sexy without the (partly grey) beard and the constantly greasy hair on display in A Star Is Born… He seemed like a total "trainwreck" all throughout the film. But then that was surely done on purpose because his character was beside "out of it" most of the time.
Probably to emphasize this aspect, the camera movements in A Star Is Born were often very shaky and almost made me as a viewer a bit dizzy.
The final verdict:
It is worthwhile seeing Lady Gaga's debut as an actress. She clearly rocks the stage in every aspect! Apart from that, unfortunately just a medium-exciting film. For me, A Star Is Born definitely lacked some rock'n'roll.
*** 3 out of 5 stars