Rose Dommu: Oh, those are Lady Gaga's next two album titles.
Okay, so let me preface this all by saying that I am a Little Monster. So, anyone listening — I want everyone to know I am a Gaga stan. That is very important context for everything that I'm about to say. I think it is both. It is both hot garbage and a cultural touchstone. It is like a good movie that is also very bad, with good performances that are also terrible.
Fran Tirado: It's difficult to kind of grade it on that scale because so many elements of the film were enrapturing and Lady Gaga really is the best part of the movie. And Little Monster or not, I think that's really the thing that's coming through. She's so charismatic and enrapturing and I honestly didn't expect that. I kind of was expecting something bad and campy. And, obviously, she understood the assignment — she still gave us camp. But I think the film as a whole had an editing issue and focused on some of the least interesting parts of the true story, which is extremely juicy and a great premise for a film.
RD: I do think there's a better movie inside the movie, and one that stuck closer to Patrizia and the romance and the murder and less of the business stuff. But I agree with Fran — I think Gaga is really the shining star of this movie. Also, Salma Hayek and Al Pacino were great. But I don't know, after seeing A Star Is Born — like, A Star Is Born is kind of just Gaga playing a version of herself. And here we see her play an actual character and a real person, although she chose not to meet that person. So who knows how much of this is a realistic portrayal? But it is Gaga being a fully embodied character and a villain and chewing every ounce of scenery possible. And I think some of the dissonance comes from the fact that some of the actors feel like they're all in different movies, but Gaga is in the movie that I want to watch.
FT: Exactly. And the hour spent on the financial drama that Rose was talking about really just felt like a gorgeously staged and costumed episode of a crime thriller podcast. I was like, "These are not the parts that I want to be watching."