Friday, March 11, 2022

#PopCultureResolution - A Star is Born (1954)

A Star is Born (1954)

Director: George Cukor

Length: 176 minutes

Cast: Judy Garland, James Mason, Jack Carson

Release Date: September 29, 1954

Synopsis: Hollywood actor Norman Maine (James Mason) is a celebrity whose star is on the wane, but when he meets aspiring actress Esther Blodgett (Judy Garland), he is inspired to help her, and soon the two appear in a musical together. Now known as Vicki Lester, she marries Norman and finds herself in demand, while his reputation continues to decline, resulting in heavy bouts of drinking. Eventually, Vicki must choose between moving forward with her career and attempting to save her husband.


This movie is not what you might consider a musical but it is musical adjacent so I decided to include it.

Judy Garland is a legend and icon but I am not overly familiar with or a fan of her work. I understand why she is so beloved but I have never been drawn to her work. 

This movie did not change that. I think she gives a commendable and engaging performance in this. She is known for her incredible signing talent and that is definitely evident here. I just did not connect with her performance as fully as I would have wanted to.

James Mason's performance did not work for me. I didn't see the vulnerability that this character is supposed to have. I did not see the tragedy of this story through this character. It is a decent performance but one that pales, for me, to the awards worthy one given by Bradley Cooper. I mostly blame this lack of connection with the lack of connection between the two leads.

The chemistry between the leads, for me, was lacking. I didn't feel the love between them and that made the later half of this movie not quite connect with me. This is a story that has to make you care and I just did not feel it.

I personally enjoyed seeing the scenes and elements that influenced Bradley Cooper's version of the story - complete with the 'another look at you' line. It made me appreciate both movies all the more because you can why those moments stood out and were worth including. The moments that did work in this one really shone brightly.

I love the Bradley Cooper directed version of this story and this one did not surpass it as my favourite. I enjoyed this one enough but felt some elements lacking and did not quite connect with it as much as I did the more recent take on this Hollywood tale.

I am curious to see what I think of the other versions of this story and would ultimately recommend it for those who have an interest in seeing it ... even with the almost three hour time commitment.

No comments:

Post a Comment

I love comments. Thank you for stopping by my blog and thank you even more for leaving me a comment.

I have decided to make this an awards free blog. I appreciate the gesture, and love that you thought of my blog, however I simply can't pass them along as required.

You Might Also Like

Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...