Director: Bradley Cooper
Cast: Bradley Cooper, Lady Gaga, Andrew Dice Clay, Sam Elliott
Have I Seen it Before: Am I terribly behind the curve if I say no? Probably. Guess I’m just behind the curve.
Did I Like It: It’ll stick with me, so I’m gonna say yes.
By the time I came around to Bradley Cooper’s directorial debut, it already had a number of things working against. First, it’s a remake. Not just a remake, but a remake of a remake. By all rights, there should be something diminished about it.
Beyond that, it’s been hyped to me beyond the previous known limits of hyping. Everyone loves this movie, to the point where In early considered not writing a review of it at all, because what more could I possibly contribute to the conversation? I’ll either join the chorus, or the movie might not work for me in that particular instant, and I’ll be forced for 300 or more words to pass off my particular mood at the time the movie played for some kind of objective truth.
And so, I’m left somewhere in the middle. I don’t know if the film particularly transfixed me in the moment, but as I mentioned above, in the hours that have passed since I watched it, it is sticking with me. Which is more than the vast majority of movies, and hints at even more greatness to come from Bradley Cooper as a director, and Lady Gaga as an actress.
And that’s where the film truly, if you’ll forgive the expression, sings. This is a film built nearly totally off of people expanding into roles that we never expected them to fill. Bradley Cooper acquits himself well as a director, and turns out to be a far better musician than anyone could have rightly expected him to be. Similarly, Lady Gaga emerges as a fully formed film actress where other musicians would struggle, and manages to stretch her muscles in the music arena, while still staying true to her brand.
So, while it may not be as earth-shatteringly good as some people insist, it is far better than it deserves to be, and it will only continue to grow on me.