A Star Is Born came out over the weekend and it’s Bradley Cooper’s defining role — as an actor, as a director, as a writer, as a producer, and as the sexiest, scruffiest voice to ever exist in the land. Yes, the movie's as good as critics as saying. And yes, Cooper's voice is even better.
As Jackson Maine, Cooper’s voice takes on its own personality. His voice can sing, his voice can drink, his voice can argue, his voice can seduce. You want to know the one issue with Cooper’s A Star Is Born voice is, though? That Cooper has neglected to make it his everyday voice.
The origin of the voice is simple: the voice is the love child of Eddie Vedder’s rockstar growl, and Sam Elliott’s husky baritone. But unlike Lady Gaga's Ally, whose star is born and soars beyond her wildest dreams, this star of a voice's lifespan is confined the film's run time. Lady Gaga wholeheartedly agrees, saying that the first time she heard him sing in the voice she was "blown away." Same. I miss it.
It’s not that Cooper’s real-life voice is bad, per se, but it’s kind of like cheap gin versus top shelf. It'll do the trick, but it's not the good stuff. To Cooper's credit, the voice is apparently painful to maintain, and it took him literally years to get it right, but that doesn't mean I can't mourn the loss of the Best Voice of the Year.
Now, I can't prove my point without proving my point, so here goes.
Exhibit A: Cooper singing in A Star Is Born.
Exhibit B: Cooper talking in a A Star Is Born.
Exhibit C: Cooper using his normal voice in an interview this week.
Exhibit D: Cooper's voice in Wet Hot American Summer.
Exhibit E: Cooper's saying "I just wanted to take another look at you."
Grade: A +++++++++.
And finally, exhibit F: Cooper saying he hopes to one day sound like Jackson Maine IRL.
Just bring back the voice, Bradley. Please.