A Star Is Born – 7

If you like watching Bradley Cooper (with Sam Elliot’s voice) and Lady Gaga (with and without makeup), you’ll find plenty to like in this movie, which owed its feeling of longeur partly to overlong closeups of the two stars. If you’re looking, however, for credible characters, gripping story or particularly good music, you may be disappointed, as I was. The dramatic peak arrives one-third of the way in, when Jack calls the starry-eyed Ally onstage to sing a song they have never rehearsed, to heartwarming effect. Everything curdles after that. Jack’s descent into drugs and alcohol made no emotional sense to me, let alone his suicide after a seemingly successful stint in rehab. And Ally’s looks and songs lose their authenticity, and her final memorial to her husband’s memory is totally forgettable. OK, so maybe A Star Is Born is not meant to be a feel-good movie. Somehow the depressing turn doesn’t jibe, however, with all the closeups of our glamorous stars.

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