A Star Is Born (1954)

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(out of 5)


This is the best version of the oft-told tale of stardom and personal loss. gives the performance of a lifetime as an aspiring singer who meets famous movie star  and falls in love with him. He promotes her to his film studio and she eventually becomes a big movie star, while he descends into a personal struggle with alcoholism.  Try as she might, Garland’s love for him just can’t stop him from doing extreme harm to himself, personally and professionally. The many musical numbers are beautifully achieved, sung to perfection by Garland and photographed in gorgeous Technicolour. George Cukor’s direction is superb, and Moss Hart’s screenplay the best treatment ever written of the story. The two versions prior to this, What Price Hollywood and the 1937 version also called A Star Is Born were dramatic pieces, while this one, the 1976 version with Barbra Streisand and Glitter starring Mariah Carey in 2001 are all musicals.


USA, 1954

Directed by

Screenplay by , based on the 1937 film, story by , , screenplay by , , Robert Carson

Cinematography by

Produced by

Music by

Production Design by

Costume Design by ,

Film Editing by


Cast Tags:  


Academy Award Nominations
Best Actor (James Mason as “Norman Maine/Alfred Hinkel”)
Best Actress (Judy Garland as “Esther Blodgett/Vicki Lester”)
Best Art Direction (Colour) (art direction: Malcolm Bert, Gene Allen, Irene Sharaff; set decoration: George James Hopkins)
Best Costume Design (Colour) (Jean Louis, Mary Ann Nyberg, Irene Sharaff)
Best Music (Music Score of a Musical Picture) (Ray Heindorf)
Best Music (Song) (“The Man That Got Away”, music by Harold Arlen; lyrics by Ira Gershwin)

Golden Globe Awards
Best Performance By An Actor in a Motion Picture-Comedy or Musical (James Mason)
Best Performance By An Actress in a Motion Picture-Comedy or Musical (Judy Garland)

New York Film Critics Award Nominations
Best Actor (James Mason)
Best Actress (Judy Garland)

National Board Of Review Award
Top Ten Films

Writers Guild Award Nomination
Best Written American Musical

Directors Guild Award Nomination
Outstanding Directorial Achievement in Motion Pictures (George Cukor)

British Academy Award Nomination
Best Foreign Actress (Judy Garland)


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