With Bradley Cooper‘s Maestro about to stir the soup at the 2023 Venice Film Festival, it’s allowable, I feel, to look back at what happened when Cooper’s A Star Is Born premiered at the 2018 Toronto Film Festival, and why the lizards leapt and hissed.

The inciting incident was triggered by Variety‘s Kris Tapley, and it happened just shy of five years ago (on 9.4.18) and posting all of those “whoa, wait a minute…let’s have some perspective” essays was thoroughly exhausting, and I’m speaking only as one who merely joined the cause after Tapley declared that Bradley Cooper‘s remake of a remake (‘76) of a remake (‘54) of a remake (‘37) was an historic humdinger to end all humdingers.

I genuinely admired the first half of Cooper’s film but not so much the second half, and those inner voices just wouldn’t stop. This well-made film had been over-praised to death, and it had to be cut down to size. Proportionality was all.