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While the Oscar-buzzed remake of A Star is Born stuck to its romantically old-fashioned roots, the Natalie Portman-starring drama offers a toxic alternative
Who’d be a pop star, eh? If there’s one thing we’ve learned from cinema in 2018 – A Star is Born, Vox Lux, even the PG-rated neutering of Freddie Mercury’s legend in Bohemian Rhapsody – it’s that the gleaming lights of the music industry can emit a pretty harsh glow when you’re under them, that the warm embrace of a crowd can turn to a stranglehold in the blink of a heavily made-up eye. That fame comes at a price is, admittedly, not the hottest of takes: in the movies, it goes back at least as, well, 1932’s What Price Hollywood?, the film that directly bore one of this year’s grit-amid-the-glitter case studies.