We've been anxiously awaiting A Star Is Born, for what seems like forever. Frankly, our friends are tired of us talking about it already and it just hit theaters today!
The musical romance of Bradley Cooper and Lady Gaga is finally here though, and there's plenty of gaga-goodness to get you through the workday until you get to the movies.
First the film. It's Cooper's directorial debut and Gaga's first starring role, but the reviews sound like they've been together forever. People are already predicting Academy Award nominations and are piling on the critical acclaim. The film currently has a 93 percent on Rotten Tomatoes. This is actually the fourth time A Star Is Born has been made, but the film is a "reimagining" not a remake. It's also the first version with Bradley Cooper showing off his new country crooning chops, so we're here for it.
According to Cooper, the two set up a meeting over pasta in Lady Gaga's living room, and the tape of Bradley singing that evening was part of the pitch for the film. "She had all this pasta that she had made the night before. She heated it up and I was eating it with her, it was insane" Cooper told Conan last month. "She made me feel so comfortable."
Cooper didn't become a grizzled, well-worn rockstar overnight - that kind of transformation takes time and a little help from some true professionals. Bradley learned to play guitar from Willie Nelson's son Lukas Nelson, and learned some frontman swagger from Pearl Jam's Eddie Vedder. “He gave me minor, little things that only musicians know about what to do, just aesthetically and the inner workings," Cooper told Yahoo about Vedder.
In the end it all worked, as Cooper comes off authentic and a perfect match for the powerhouse of Lady Gaga.
In addition to the film, today also sees the release of the A Star Is Born Soundtrack. Here we find a collection of songs from both Bradley Cooper and Lady Gaga, and key moments of dialogue from the film to help tell the story. In fact, it might be too key, and the soundtrack should really come with a "spoiler alert." Aside from revealing far too much of the movie, it's an amazing collection of songwriting and dynamic style. Gaga of course is the star, who shines on the classic country ballads. It feels like a natural next step for Lady Gaga, and actually feels like a proper evolution from her last studio album Joanne in a lot of ways. Some songs sound instantly timeless, like the aching "Is That Alright?" and the Whitney-channeling "I'll Never Love Again." The surprise is Cooper, who sounds perfectly comfortable as a weary, whiskey-soaked singer - but also just as at-home as a Sturgill Simpson-style rocker. Skip the cast recording clips until after you leave the theater, but enjoy the songs as soon as possible.
Finally, Lady Gaga stopped by The Late Show with Stephen Colbert last night to talk about the film. The two drank wine, talked politics, and broke down some moments from the movie. "I had to really get inside of that" she told Colbert about getting into her character. "I changed my hair and I took off my makeup months before filming the movie, because I had to get into character and I had to get used to it."
"It was actually kind of liberating, cause nobody knew who I was" she laughs.