I was so hungry for subtext - any kind of subtext - in A Star Is Born that I realized that I was listening to the scenes between Bradley Cooper and Sam Elliott with the same kind of gratitude I would reserve to Harold Pinter. Needless to say, these scenes are really quite superficial, but they seem unusually profound when compated to the - many, too many - scenes which Cooper shares with his co-star Lady Gaga.
I must be careful writing aboit this movie on this board. A Star is Born after all is - always was - a very American dark fairy tale, one dealing with two American obsessions - their hunger for success, money and prizes, and their immense, invincible fear of losing them. I am immune to all this and couldn't care less, so I must admit that even the other versions hadn't impressed me much. But the orher versions - yes, even the Barbra Streisand one - had at least, if not great acting (though Garland and Mason were of course great), EFFECTIVE acting. The main roles were showy, the kind of meaty roles actors sink their teeth into.
But Lady Gaga usn't an actor. She's just a good singer (and the scenes where she sings are the best in the movie). But honestly her performance reminded me of Pia Zadora (no, Uri, it's not just about not being a movie star or not looking like a movie star - it's about her being a bad actress). Bradley Cooper at least IS an actor, but a crucial element in this story is the audience believing that the leading man instantly falls in love with the talent, the charisma and the soul of the leading lady - and when Cooper looks adoringly at Lady Gaga you can only think it must be too much alcohol.When the central relationship miserably fails, the movie fails with it, and gets embarassing (and boring).
But again - American critics LOVE this movie, and the Americans on this board will follow suit (this will be Oscar Guy's favorite novie of the year - wanna bet?). It will get lots of Oscar nominations, will certainly win at least one - and probably four Golden Globes. So, just between you and me : it's a bad movie. But nobody else except me will tell you so. Keep the secret and be grateful to Italiano