Based on the best-selling book by Hoosier native John Green, The Fault in Our Stars (PG-13) follows the friendship/romance of two cancer-stricken teenagers (Shailene Woodley and Ansel Elgort). Nat Wolff, Laura Dern, Sam Trammell and Willem Dafoe costar in the film. Josh Boone directs.
Andy: The Fault in Our Stars is one of the most beloved young adult novels of the last few decades. Upon reading the book, it was clear that this is a story that is just about perfect for transitioning into a movie. Star-crossed teenage lovers living in the shadow of cancer seems both depressing and heavy-handed, but what makes the novel so revered is the interesting, realistic, and inspiring way these characters maneuver through their problem-filled lives. The characters are so vibrant and defiant, that you forget how manipulative the narrative is. The film remains shockingly true to the text, but predictably ends up not bringing the same depth and gravitas that the novel does.
Ryan: I have not read the book that the film’s based on, but after seeing the movie I completely understand the allure of The Fault in Our Stars. It’s a timeless story (two star-crossed lovers) but presented with modern sensibilities and tone. Movies of this variety are produced in abundance – either on the silver screen or on television – but The Fault in Our Stars doesn’t (for the most part) fall into the trappings of being overly melodramatic and falsely sentimental.
Certainly the cancer aspect of the film is important to the story and to the characters, but it doesn’t define the movie (or the characters) and that’s key in presenting a young adult love story that feels genuine, authentic and timeless. I believe the movie will not only please fans of the novel but general moviegoers as well.