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The Fault in Our Stars - Movie Review

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The Fault in Our Stars - Movie Review

3 stars

The genre of book to movie interpretation has worked well for Hollywood in the past, with such titles as The Lord of the Rings, The Silence of the Lambs, and True Grit, the industry has shown, with the right director, correct cast, and duly constructed screenplay, that book films can make quite an impression. Perhaps it is the correct timing, or perhaps, in my opinion, the director and cast making the biggest impression, (Peter Jackson, Joel & Ethan Coen), which decidedly cement these films as some of the greatest book to film adaptations to have been shown on the silver screen.

So is not the case however, for The Fault in Our Stars. Based off of John Green’s novel of the same title, the film stars Divergent centerfold Shailene Woodley, as cancer patient, Hazel Grace Lancaster, feeling the consequences of stage 4 Thyroid cancer, as she must endure every waking moment of the day without the simple luxury of breathing on her own, a pain subsided by a portable oxygen tank at her heels. Reluctant to socialize and experience “normal,” life, she must, not of her own volition, attend a cancer support group at a local church, due to a decree of worry from her parents, and doctor.

Whilst at the support group, Hazel unwillingly runs into Augustus Waters (Ansel Elgort), a former cancer patient just the same, which inevitably causes him to have a leg removed. From a single bump in a hallway comes the uncomfortable flirtatious eye contact, as well as some unwelcome blushing, ultimately culminating into the overly cliché  moment of the boy asking the girl on a date. Unfortunately, from this moment on, the film loses much credibility and steam.

While a vast majority of the film focuses on the two children being intoxicated by a book with an unsatisfying ending, and their journey to Amsterdam to meet a very pretentious, alcohol reliant, asshole if you will, author Peter Van Houten (Willem Dafoe), comes one of the stronger performances, and focalization points of the film. As the pretentious ass, Dafoe creates a strong antagonist, which is a direct juxtaposition to the rest of the film’s hopeful, support group style theme.

As a whole the film is just, and I mean just. It lacks any solid direction, as the theme, and overall direction of the story had many stop and go’s. Perhaps it is the overly cliché use of symbolism in life, that presents a new perspective for those who suffer from illness. Perhaps it is the dry, prototypical performance of Ansel Elgort, who lacks from any dramatic sense of character development, meaning simply, that his performance is very shallow, and transparent. Or perhaps most of all, in which may present the most sense, is that of ill-experienced director Josh Boone, who has only one film on his resume (Stuck in Love).

All of the perhaps(‘s) aside, Shailene Woodley has solidified herself as a legitimate talent in the film industry, breaking away from her T.V. roots. Willem Dafoe offers a convincing performance, and the film itself is a real tear-jerker. Enjoy ladies.

The Fault in Our Stars - Movie Review

MPAA Rating: PG-13 for thematic elements, some sexuality and brief strong language.
Runtime:
125 mins
Director
: Josh Boone
Cast:
Shailene Woodley, Ansel Elgort, Nat Wolff
Genre
: Drama | Romance
Tagline:
One sick love story.
Memorable Movie Quote: "They don't kill you unless you light them. And I've never lit one. It's a metaphor, see: You put the killing thing right between your teeth, but you don't give it the power to do its killing. A metaphor.."
Distributor:
Fox 2000 Pictures
Official Site: http://thefaultinourstarsmovie.com/
Release Date:
June 6, 2014
DVD/Blu-ray Release Date:
No details available
Synopsis: Hazel (Shailene Woodley) and Gus (Ansel Elgort) are two extraordinary teenagers who share an acerbic wit, a disdain for the conventional, and a love that sweeps them -- and us -- on an unforgettable journey. Their relationship is all the more miraculous, given that they met and fell in love at a cancer support group. THE FAULT IN OUR STARS, based upon the number-one bestselling novel by John Green, explores the funny, thrilling and tragic business of being alive and in love.

No details available.

 

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