Windy City Media Group Frontpage News
Celebrating 30 Years of Gay Lesbian Bisexual and Trans News
home search facebook twitter join
Gay News Sponsor Windy City Times 2019-03-13
About WCMG Publications News Index  Entertainment Features Bars & Clubs Calendar Videos Advertisers OUT! Guide    Marriage



MOVIE REVIEW 'A Star is Born' is born again for the 21st century
by Jerry Nunn, Windy City Times

facebook twitter pin it google +1 reddit email

The fourth version of the classic tale titled A Star Is Born is belting it out for a new generation in 2018, following versions that were released in 1937, 1954 and 1976. The first two films are centered around the acting world and the last two around music. Fans of the previous versions will no doubt spot how various elements from each incarnation have been repackaged in this year's film.

Bradley Cooper, who directed, plays the already famous singer Jackson Maine ( an homage to legacy character Norman Maine ) and Lady Gaga plays Ally ( no last name and named Esther in previous versions ), a struggling performer with big dreams.

Maine wanders into a gay bar and hears Ally singing Edith Piaf's "La Vie en Rose." He meets her in the dressing room, she removes her makeup and we all start to fall in love with her. Things get complicated as the two date, marry and experience episodes with addiction.

Cooper and Gaga's chemistry is undeniable, and following an early screening in Chicago, Cooper said that the production team halted the filming for two months to workshop the piece. It certainly paid off.

The film includes many cameos, among them foul-mouthed funnyman Andrew Dice Clay, who plays Ally's father; and another comedian, Dave Chappelle, who plays Maine's best friend. Viewers may also recognize Anthony Ramos, who plays Ally's best friend, from Hamilton. Sam Elliott gives another grounded performance as Bobby, the brother and manager of Maine. RuPaul Drag Racers D.J. 'Shangela' Pierce and Willam Belli ( whom Gaga hand-picked ) are also given a few good one-liners.

Cooper is impressive as a first-time director, with shots that flow together from Maine's massive concert scenes to simple home life with Ally. At one point, the camera pans over to a picture on the wall, giving a glimpse of Ally's mother and telling the audience all they need to know about this family tree. Cooper knows how to keep scenes intimate and not veer into melodrama, allowing the leads ample opportunity to create raw, emotional performances on the big screen. The movie is meant to be watched in a Dolby Cinema theater, so seek one out as Cooper suggested at the Q&A.

As an actor, Cooper is very likable and that carries over into his character onscreen. Maine suffers tinnitus, an ear condition, along with his multiple addiction issues. Many actors would have gone overboard, especially playing an alcoholic, but Cooper hits the right notes.

He also complements Gaga's singing and holds his own on the riveting duet "Shallow." When Ally's career moves into her performing shallower pop songs, you can see Jackson appear frustrated without him overdoing it. This makes his character drink more and the cycle continues.

Stefani Joanne Angelina Germanotta ( aka Gaga ) hits notes not usually heard from her, and bares her soul in a moving performance that is not to be missed. While she may not take home all the trophies during the upcoming awards season because of the stiff competition, she has proven with this project that she can cross over into the world of starring roles.

At one point in the movie, Ally sits in a parking lot frustrated with her flailing success. I couldn't help thinking of the time she performed at Windy City Media Group's Idol competition at the finals and she sat outside the club on the curb and no one wanted an autograph. She has since proven she's a star worthy of more attention, and this movie is a reflection of her meteoric rise in the music world. Sometimes you have to pay your dues in a gay club and fight your way to the top, making one fan at a time. I predict she will now do this in the acting world and silence any of the doubters. Happy new birthday, Gaga—an acting star is born on Oct. 5.

A Star Is Born opens nationwide Friday, Oct. 5.

Also see .

facebook twitter pin it google +1 reddit email

Windy City Media Group does not approve or necessarily agree with the views posted below.
Please do not post letters to the editor here. Please also be civil in your dialogue.
If you need to be mean, just know that the longer you stay on this page, the more you help us.


Gay News

PASSAGES Filmmaker Barbara Hammer dies at 79 2019-03-17 - Pioneering experimental filmmaker Barbara Hammer—whose works involved a distinctive lesbian perspective—has died of ovarian cancer, ARTNews reported. She was 79. Hammer's breakthrough film, ...

Gay News

SHOWBIZ: Aguilera, Beyonce, Tribeca Film Festival, Marc Jacobs 2019-03-12 - The Human Rights Campaign ( HRC ) announced the organization will honor six-time Grammy Award-winning singer-songwriter Christina Aguilera with the HRC Ally for ...

Gay News

Wiggins Weighs In On Giant Little Ones 2019-03-12 - There's a new, little movie in town that defies labels in big ways while showing a whole spectrum of the LGBT community. Giant ...

Gay News

'Legally Blonde' collection now out on Blu-ray 2019-03-09 - The Legally Blonde Collection, centering on the character Elle Woods ( played by Reese Witherspoon ), is out on Blu-ray. The series is ...

Gay News

SHOWBIZ Tyler Blackburn, Ellen Page, Isaac Mizrahi, Annie Lennox 2019-03-06 - Former Pretty Little Liars actor Tyler Blackburn recently talked with Entertainment Weekly about the same-sex relationship his character, Alex, has on the new ...

Gay News

MOVIES New Madonna docudrama gets into the groove 2019-03-03 - Who's that girl? Meet Madonna's doppelganger—Jamie Auld, a 23-year-old actress taking on the role of pre-fame Madonna in a new film chronicling the ...

Gay News

Film program on March 1 addresses Cuban LGBT politics 2019-02-28 - The next installment of Cuban Visions, a year-long film series exploring both early revolutionary and contemporary Cuban life and culture, will explore the ...

Gay News

Feminist film fest kicks off at Columbia College 2019-02-27 - A number of LGBT-themed films are featured within the Chicago Feminist Film Festival, running Wed., Feb. 27-Friday, March 1. The films will screen ...

Gay News

Billy Masters 2019-02-27 - "I'm not crying because I'm on my period or anything. I can't believe a film about menstruation won an Oscar!"—Rayka Zehtabchi during the ...

Gay News

New film sparks talk on broken justice system for local trans women 2019-02-27 - Eisha Love is a 29-year-old trans woman with profound stories to tell about her life in Chicago and its justice system. Her life ...


Copyright © 2019 Windy City Media Group. All rights reserved.
Reprint by permission only. PDFs for back issues are downloadable from
our online archives. Single copies of back issues in print form are
available for $4 per issue, older than one month for $6 if available,
by check to the mailing address listed below.

Return postage must accompany all manuscripts, drawings, and
photographs submitted if they are to be returned, and no
responsibility may be assumed for unsolicited materials.
All rights to letters, art and photos sent to Nightspots
(Chicago GLBT Nightlife News) and Windy City Times (a Chicago
Gay and Lesbian News and Feature Publication) will be treated
as unconditionally assigned for publication purposes and as such,
subject to editing and comment. The opinions expressed by the
columnists, cartoonists, letter writers, and commentators are
their own and do not necessarily reflect the position of Nightspots
(Chicago GLBT Nightlife News) and Windy City Times (a Chicago Gay,
Lesbian, Bisexual and Transegender News and Feature Publication).

The appearance of a name, image or photo of a person or group in
Nightspots (Chicago GLBT Nightlife News) and Windy City Times
(a Chicago Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual and Transgender News and Feature
Publication) does not indicate the sexual orientation of such
individuals or groups. While we encourage readers to support the
advertisers who make this newspaper possible, Nightspots (Chicago
GLBT Nightlife News) and Windy City Times (a Chicago Gay, Lesbian
News and Feature Publication) cannot accept responsibility for
any advertising claims or promotions.








About WCMG Publications News Index  Entertainment Features Bars & Clubs Calendar Videos Advertisers OUT! Guide    Marriage

About WCMG      Contact Us      Online Front  Page      Windy City  Times      Nightspots      OUT! Guide     
Identity      BLACKlines      En La Vida      Archives      Subscriptions      Distribution      Windy City Queercast     
Queercast Archives      Advertising  Rates      Deadlines      Advanced Search     
Press  Releases      Event Photos      Join WCMG  Email List      Email Blast     
Upcoming Events      Todays Events      Ongoing Events      Post an Event      Bar Guide      Community Groups      In Memoriam      Outguide Categories      Outguide Advertisers      Search Outguide      Travel      Dining Out      Blogs      Spotlight  Video     
Classifieds      Real Estate      Place a  Classified     

Windy City Media Group publishes Windy City Times,
The Bi-Weekly Voice of the Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual and Trans Community.
5315 N. Clark St. #192, Chicago, IL 60640-2113 • PH (773) 871-7610 • FAX (773) 871-7609.