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A Star Is Born (1976)

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A has-been rock star falls in love with a young, up-and-coming songstress.

Director:

Frank Pierson

Writers:

John Gregory Dunne (screenplay by), Joan Didion (screenplay by) | 3 more credits »
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Popularity
18 ( 28)
Won 1 Oscar. Another 6 wins & 6 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Barbra Streisand ... Esther Hoffman
Kris Kristofferson ... John Norman Howard
Gary Busey ... Bobby Ritchie
Oliver Clark ... Gary Danziger
Venetta Fields ... The Oreos
Clydie King Clydie King ... The Oreos
Marta Heflin ... Quentin
M.G. Kelly M.G. Kelly ... Bebe Jesus
Sally Kirkland ... Photographer
Joanne Linville ... Freddie
Uncle Rudy Uncle Rudy ... Mo
Paul Mazursky ... Brian
Stephen Bruton Stephen Bruton ... The Speedway
Sammy Lee Creason Sammy Lee Creason ... The Speedway (as Sam Creason)
Cleve Dupin Cleve Dupin ... The Speedway
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Storyline

Talented rock star John Norman Howard has seen his career begin to decline. Too many years of concerts and managers and life on the road have made him cynical and the monotony has taken its toll. Then he meets the innocent, pure and very talented singer Esther Hoffman. As one of his songs in the movie says "I'm gonna take you girl, I'm gonna show you how." And he does. He shows Esther the way to stardom while forsaking his own career. As they fall in love, her success only makes his decline even more apparent. Written by A. Lloyd Adams [aadams@airmail.net]

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Genres:

Drama | Music | Romance

Certificate:

R | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Details

Country:

USA

Language:

English

Release Date:

17 December 1976 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Rainbow Road See more »

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Box Office

Budget:

$6,000,000 (estimated)

Gross USA:

$80,000,000

Cumulative Worldwide Gross:

$88,870,102
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

| (extended)

Sound Mix:

Dolby

Color:

Color (Metrocolor)

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Kris Kristofferson did not get along with the director. According to Kris, Frank Pierson, himself a World War II veteran, looked down on Kristofferson for being in the Army, but not going to war in Vietnam. Kristofferson later said: "I was too drunk to give a shit." See more »

Goofs

During the first breakfast of John and Esther, the layout of hands and dishes changes several times between shots. See more »

Quotes

Esther Hoffman: You can trash your life but you're not going to trash mine.
See more »

Crazy Credits

Ms. Streisand's clothes from ... Her Closet. See more »

Connections

Referenced in Mystery Science Theater 3000: Werewolf (1998) See more »

Soundtracks

I BELIEVE IN LOVE
Music by Kenny Loggins
Lyrics by Alan Bergman & Marilyn Bergman
Performed by Barbra Streisand
See more »

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User Reviews

 
An Enduring Tale
4 April 2009 | by bkoganbingSee all my reviews

Transferred from the world of Hollywood to the world of rock music, this latest version of A Star Is Born lacks the glamor of the other two, mainly because the field is a less glamorous one. Nevertheless the role of Esther has attracted only the best of players, from Janet Gaynor to Judy Garland and now Barbra Streisand. That's a hat trick hard to beat in any field.

In the other two versions, Fredric March and then James Mason, are a pair of self destructive drunks who when we meet them are on the downward side of their careers and have only one ennobling virtue, their love for Gaynor/Garland. Kris Kristofferson however is a multi-substance abuser and because we're talking about the rock scene has the groupies attached to him. Unlike in the other two versions, Streisand catches him with one and the whole thing about the pure love loses its potency because of it. However the incident does set him up for his final moment of self destruction.

All the supporting characters from the other two versions are completely eliminated. Gary Busey has a nice role as Kristofferson's music arranger who fulfills many of the functions that eliminated characters from the other versions have. The rest of the film's supporting parts are very undefined which makes this version weaker than the others.

But for those who are interested in hearing Barbra sing, A Star Is Born will more than satisfy you. The film got an Oscar for the song Evergreen which Kristofferson and Streisand duet and it became one of her best selling records. Judy Garland was similarly served in her version with The Man That Got Away although that song was nominated and did not win.

A Star Is Born is an enduring tale and I don't think we've seen the last of it. May the next group of players do the story as much justice as the three pairs of co-stars I've cited.


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