Music & Culture
Movie Review: Is “The Fault in Our Stars” Worth Watching?
Written by Christi Given | June 29, 2014
Many of you PI Girls probably have heard about The Fault in Our Stars—not only the book by John Greene, but also the film, just released on June 6 by 20th Century Fox. The Fault in Our Stars is a touching and heartfelt love story. The book and film are appropriate for young adults and up, and the film is really growing in popularity ($48.2 million in box office sales, outdoing even Tom Cruise’s Edge of Tomorrow!).
I recently saw the film, and I’m not going to lie…I had my tissues with me, and YES, it was what you think it will be: a tearjerker. It could be in the category of The Notebook and Titanic—films full of romance and drama—but above all, it’s a story about love. Remember, this is not a Christian film and it does have some content that I would not deem “appropriate” necessarily, but for the most part, the film is realistic and tells the story of young love.
Synopsis and movie review
The Fault in Our Stars is a down-to-earth movie and doesn’t have special effects or crazy costumes. It depicts the reality of the world of the main characters, with whom the audience connects and bonds deeply over the course of the film.
The story is about a teenage girl, Hazel Grace (played by The Descendants actress Shailene Woodley), who is coping with a former illness—a tumor that was healed—but still struggles with health issues such as lung problems and unpredictable episodes where it’s hard to breathe. Hazel Grace is a normal “girl next door” who joins a community group of teenagers, all of whom are on the road to recovery with their different illnesses. She reluctantly attends this teen meeting on her mother’s advice, and after a couple of meetings, Hazel Grace meets charming Augustus Waters, aka “Gus” (played by Ansel Elgort), who breathes life into the lonely existence that Hazel Grace tends to feel. This encounter changes her world and lifts her spirits. As you go along for the ride, you feel the invigorating expedition Hazel Grace is taken on and you feel like you’re right there in the center of it all. Through ups and downs, the audience bonds with the characters, and the story has surprises that throw you for a loop.
We also meet Isaac (played by Nat Wolff), a close friend of Gus and then Hazel Grace, and we become drawn into the different scenarios that occur throughout the film. Laura Dern plays Frannie (Hazel Grace’s mother) and Sam Trammell plays Michael (Hazel Grace’s father), and we meet the interesting character of Van Houten (played by Willem Dafoe), the acclaimed author Hazel Grace and Gus once admired.
In my opinion, for a teen heartthrob type of film (which I definitely can fall for!), it was well directed and well produced, with convincing acting and an impressive soundtrack.
Speaking of the soundtrack, I give it five stars, as there are many of my favorite types of artists in the indie/folk/pop music genres. If you like The Civil Wars, or the Lumineers, Ed Shereen and the like, then you’ll enjoy the soundtrack for this film! Some of the songs are by Birdy (her song “Not About Angels” is in the film). In addition, I love Tom Odell’s “Long Way Down,” Ray Lamontagne’s “Without Words” and other new amazing musical discoveries.
Book or film?
I haven’t yet read the book, although I now have an interest because of the film. In general, people say the book is always better than the movie version. What do you think?
PI Girls, have you seen the film or read the book—or both? If so, which one is better in your opinion? Do you think they’re equal, or what are the differences? Comment below!