It’s nominated for a bunch of Oscars, it’s the most memed film of last year, and you can finally watch it from the comfort of your living room via Lightbox now. Superfans Alex Casey and Sam Brooks discuss why A Star is Born is the best film ever made.
A Star is Born is available on Lightbox now.
Alex Casey: Okay. The time has come. You can now watch A Star is Born whenever, wherever, and as many times as your credit card will allow. I’m obsessed. How does one even begin to describe the many, many layers of Lady Gaga’s first big screen role, Bradley Cooper’s directorial debut?
Sam Brooks: It’s a love story. Between a man of indeterminate age and a girl in her thirties, between a man and country music, between a man and his brother, between a girl and her lover’s butt, between Lady Gaga and Bradley Cooper. It’s where Bradley Cooper, believing himself to a be a heterosexual visionary, remakes a story that has previously starred both Barbra Streisand and Judy Garland with Lady Gaga.
How many times have you seen it?
Once in the cinema and once at home. Honestly feels dangerous that it’s so readily available now, truly I’m off the deep end (of the couch) watch as I dive in (to the TV). My first question for you is this: how does one create the perfect A Star Is Born viewing environment?
When I first saw it, it was at the media screening where my fellow Borner (my name for A Star is Born superfans) and I had snuck up to the fancy Gold Class seats and reclined. When I watched it yesterday, I was lying in bed with half my face on a pillow.
I honestly think the ideal viewing situation won’t happen for another decade, where people can sit and recite the best lines along with the film, Rocky Horror Picture Show style.
It’s gone straight to the special place in my heart reserved for the first Twilight film. So fun, so quotable. I’m thinking a midnight screening at The Hollywood complete with dress-ups and free donuts to throw at the screen.
Can we talk about some of the best lines in this movie? I would like to nominate “If you don’t dig into your fuckin’ soul, you won’t have legs,” ideally muttered in a low growl in front of a large CGI billboard.
For me, it’s “I’m gonna be thinking about your nose for a very long time.” Or Halsey’s all-time line, “How great.”
I see that and I raise you Alec Baldwin’s “Ladies and gentlemen… Ally.”
How about ‘Hi Ally, I’m Gail’, from the queen that is Gail, the road manager?
I am also a huge fan of the exchange between Jackson and the pompous manager man while they are waiting for Ally to stop whingeing in the bathtub while dressed as literally a Betty Spaghetti:
And it’s less a quote and more a lyric but, “Why you come round here with an ass like that?” is something that I would consider tattooing on my lower back. Speaking of which, what’s your favourite song from the soundtrack, not including the dialogue tracks?
I am such a goddamn sucker for ‘Always Remember Us This Way.’ I particularly enjoy the lyrics “Lovers in the night / Poets trying to write / We don’t know how to rhyme / But, damn, we try.”
It’s literally a stone’s throw from your Uncle leaning over with a beer and going “I’m a poet and I don’t even know it!” and also the way she pronounces “damn” like DOMMM is enchanting.
I’m low-key obsessed with ‘Heal Me’, because it sounds exactly like Gaga’s 2017 single ‘The Cure’, which contributes to my conspiracy theory that all the pop songs were originally written for an album that has yet to materialise, and then she got cast in this, and so she used them for this instead. Also, it’s just a really lovely song that’s barely even in the movie.
We’re burying the lede. We need to talk about the first time they sing ‘Shallow’ live.
It’s honestly the best part of the movie – I could watch that scene forever. The moment where she makes the decision to go out onstage made me cry in the movies all three times and my bed once.
I completely agree. Love when Ally covers her eyes when she does the first big belt-out bit, love when Jackson encouragingly mouths “I find myself longing”, love that the video of it I just watched is uploaded to a channel called ‘Middle Aged Women Fan Club’
But what I love even more is now that we get to enjoy it playing out again and again in real life, like when Bradley Cooper got pulled onstage at Gaga’s Vegas show. He absolutely tanks it, has absolutely no idea what to do, and starts doing super meek air guitar. Honestly, he should have just peed. When in doubt, pee it out.
I can’t believe it took us this long to get to the pee. I have so many thoughts, feelings and philosophies about that scene. How many times did they film it? If that actually happened, it would be an international news story immediately and we never hear about it again afterwards? Do you think he actually peed? If not, what was the contraption used to make Bradley Cooper look like he peed himself? Was it CGI?
I would wager that he actually peed. He seems like that type of guy. Based on my extensive pee-search, I have found that both Shania Twain and Fergie have peed themselves on stage in the past. There’s also that scene where they have just eaten breakfast and Jackson picks up a giggling Ally and carries her back to bed. I SWEAR when they are rolling around he goes “the toast is going to come out” Does he mean he is about to crap on the bed? Is Jackson Maine a serial pooper and pee-er? All signs point to ‘yes’.
You heard it here first: Bradley Cooper, Method Pee-er. I remember us talking way back in October, when hope was young, about the most ridiculous scene in the film: the one where he smashes a pill with his gumboot.
Cowboy boot, surely.
My sincerest apologies – he crushes a pill with his cowboy boot, puts it in a glass of whiskey and downs it in one. Sometimes symbols just get in the way, and I’m glad that Bradley Cooper as a director knows that.
I would also like to table another one of my favourite scenes: Jackson slowly smooshing a donut all over Ally’s face when she finds out she’s got a record deal. At first, I was annoyed because it seemed like a tremendous waste of a donut, but I like how she scolds “Jaaack-son” in the exact same cadence as the owner scolds Denver the guilty dog.
If nothing else, A Star is Born is the kind of film that is full of iconic scenes that make up the two and a half hours. I know that’s a big call: a movie full of scenes. But let me be the first one to put it down on paper: A Star is Born has Some Scenes.
You know what else it delivers on? Stars. Many stars. Yuge stars. Drag stars. Kiwi stars. One of the biggest stars in the ASIB universe doesn’t even make it on screen – Willie Nelson. When Bobby Maine randomly show up backstage at SNL (I feel like there are no security guards in this world?) he casually mentions that he just got back from being on tour “with Willie”. Now THAT is a road movie I would watch. Oh god, I already want to watch it again.
I just… I just love this movie, Alex. From when Gaga starts singing ‘Somewhere Over the Rainbow’ right at the start, to when Gaga sings about her lover’s butt, to when Gaga sings about never saying goodbye, I love it. The best moments make me cry, and the most unintentionally funny moments genuinely make me laugh – and we haven’t even mentioned Sam Elliott’s voice or the way he cries when he drives away from the house.
OR THE DOG! The poor, beautiful dog.
I’m done. Going to go watch it again now.
You can watch A Star is Born on Lightbox right here. Rentals start at $6.99.
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