By Cody Curtis, Staff Writer
Every year from September to December, cinematic accolades are discussed. While talking about the Oscars and Golden Globes is important, the power of the messages presented in certain films are even more crucial. The new interpretation of A Star is Born presented by Bradley Cooper and Lady Gaga is an example of this. Powerful, musically strong and all around beautiful.
When Jackson Maine (Cooper), a very successful country rockstar, stumbles into a bar, he discovers someone truly special. Ally (Gaga) is a young woman, with an extraordinary ability to sing and create music. Maine is immediately intrigued by Ally. At one of his concerts he invites her to perform with him on stage. While unwilling at first, she takes a leap of faith and after the concert is completed love for Maine and her career start to explode as his begins to decline.
Cooper and Gaga shine as Jackson Maine and Ally. The brilliance of it, is the contrasting emotion. Cooper gives us a picture of a falling star who is depressed, with no escape until he finds love. This is Cooper’s best performance to date, not just because the strength of emotion shown, not just because of the music, but because Jackson Maine is a damaged man looking for a sense of hope, a sense of helping people.
The performance of the film and quite possibly the entire year however belongs to Gaga. Her portrayal of Ally is nothing short of a star truly being born, for audiences everywhere. Ally shows sense of vulnerability, because she is not ready to showcase her talent with the rest of the world. She is a representation of so many out there who dream of helping the world, with their own brand of creativity and talent. It is a performance for the ages and one that will rock you to the core.
A Star is Born is a musically driven film and within the first scene, we get the chance to see how great the music will be. Cooper trained for six months to be able to perform with Gaga and the work pays off. The music is very much a character in the film as much as Jackson Maine and Ally. Each song reveals something new about the plot and about the emotions of each individual on screen and it will make your toe tap. You may even want to sing along.
Stories about creativity are rampant in recent years, however no film up to this year in this writer’s humble opinion, has matched the true meaning of ‘suffering for your art’. Throughout the run time, the audience is told time and time again, when creating something, the message has to come first. One scene in particular emphasizes this very point. Jackson Maine is telling Ally that if she does not hold on to her truth and her message, she might as well not be creating at all. In today’s society, where there are so many films and music specifically tailored to entertain, but not educate, or cause self-reflection this is a critical message.
A Star is Born is a perfect title. Not only the film of introduces Lady Gaga into the spotlight of actress stardom, but because the star of this cinematic masterpiece is the music and the message. Every year film are produced, but maybe once in a decade, or two does a film get released, which is entertaining, meaningful and reflects the state of society in a perfect light.
The entertainment industry as a whole may not be a complete mess, but according to A Star is Born, it has a lot of work to do. The best takeaway anyone watching this film should have is to not be afraid or ashamed of the message you want to share with the world. Share it and be proud of it.
If you have not already, make the time to go to your local movie theater to check this film out. It is a film that will be timeless. It will encourage creativity and closer relationships with the people around you. A Star is Born is the film of the decade.