Ten Lessons To Learn From ‘A Star Is Born’ starring Lady Gaga and Bradley Cooper
Remakes are a thing of evil. Have you seen the 2009 version of the 1980 dance classic Fame? My point exactly. Well, I have and let me tell you one thing – it’s not worth the 107 minutes of your life. There’s many other examples that can support my solid hatred of remakes, formed by a personal belief that there are so many amazing stories to tell that haven’t been told yet. Are we really that lazy that we need to just rehash an idea someone else has already done? And even worse, done beautifully? So, imagine a remake of a remake of a remake. That’s a firm NO from me. And A Star Is Born is exactly that.
A 1937 film about a rising star in Hollywood turned to a 1954 musical starring Judy Garland and James Mason which then was remade in a 1978 rock musical with Barbra Streisand and Kris Kristofferson. This year, the star was reborn for the third time round, in a Hollywood blockbuster that also happens to be Bradley Cooper’s directorial debut starring Coops alongside Lady Gaga. Do you see a pattern here? Garland, Streisand, Gaga – gay icons extraordinaries. Mason, Kristofferson, Cooper? A trio of alpha males if we ever saw one. That’s both the pink pound and the blue pound covered. Three remakes, three box office success stories? No coincidence here. As I walked into the cinema last night, forced mainly by the excitement of seeing Rupaul’s Drag Race alumni Willam and Shangela on the big screen, I was expecting to hate every second of the film without the two drag superstars in it. And oh how I was wrong.
Lesson one. Never judge a remake just for being a remake. I might hold my opinions near and dear to my heart, but I also like to be proved wrong. In 135 minutes of screen time, I went from being the biggest cynic to a full-on cry-baby. Without giving away any spoilers, I’ll tell you my lesson number two. Every time a full-on singing moment happens in the film, that’s your cue to cry. Whether for happy reasons or sad, this is the right moment to shed a tear, two or a shower, as your sobs get overridden by the bass. Third lesson – just like the classic story of a rising star, pencil-thin eyebrows are officially back. Yet again. Bad Gal Riri already did it on the September cover of British Vogue, and now goes Lady Gaga, completing her Edith Piaf homage with a silky black negligé and a cover of La Vie En Rose in a dingy drag club. That’s your lesson number four: queens are the best talent-detectors out there. Skip The X Factor and find yourself a drag stage. Lessons five, six and seven are fashion ones. Cowboy hats, chain belts and shaggy white tees tied in knots à la …Baby One More Time. You need all of them in your autumn wardrobe.
Back to the film itself, let’s note that Lady Gaga can act. Lesson number seven that is. Yes, I’ve seen her eating people on American Horror Story, but I wasn’t convinced on Gags playing an actual human being with emotions. Turned out, I was wrong. Yet again. My penultimate lesson is another beauty secret. Never go from being a brunette to a full-blown ginger because shit will happen in your life. The final lesson? Pop music is fabulous. It’s okay to create bops that get stuck in people’s heads. It’s completely fine to have backup dancers dressed in sequins. It’s acceptable to love acoustic music, but make a career out of autotune. That’s your ten lessons, (mostly) without a single spoiler in there. Now go and see A Star Is Born, and learn ten of your own lessons. And don’t forget to cry. It feels good.
A Star Is Born is in out in cinemas worldwide.