Projections - Movie Reviews
With Jim Sabatini


The Fault is in Our Stars

The Fault is in Our Stars
Starring:
Shailene Woodley, Ansel Eigort, Laura Dern, Sam Trammell and Willem Dafoe


Rated: PG-13 for thematic elements, some sexuality and brief strong language.
Reviewed by: Frank  
Release date: June 6, 2014 Released by: Twentieth Century Fox

The two young actors give fine performances in this tear jerker, but Director Josh Boone milks each scene far too long and brings us a 2 hour 22 minute uncomfortable sob fest. Following this feature more tissues are on the floor than popcorn boxes. 

At the same time the material from the number 1 best seller draws a young audience filled with women who are ready to experience an emotional evening crying.  I haven heard so much emotion expressed since the old Love Story which produced just about as much sadness as this script filled with anguish on the part of two teens who are battling cancer.  

The parents played by Laura Dern and Sam Trammell follow what is expected from those who know they will probably bury their child rather than the natural reverse. That pain is part of the drama of the story and it can be felt through their performances.  The two young folks are happy warriors particularly Gus (Eilgort) who has lost a leg but is in remission.  He finds joy in life and passes it on to Hazel (Woodley).  

The romance leads the two star-crossed lovers to Amsterdam where they meet author Van Houten (Dafoe), it is his book that fascinates Hazel to the extent she wants to know what happens to the secondary characters after the girl in the book dies mid sentence.  She needs a completion which Van Houten a pajama wearing drunk is not willing to divulge, For him the girl is the driving force of the story and after her it is all over.  Hazel who is generally quiet, sad and conforming climbs all over him and shows serious anger at his attitude.

Mostly what we see is the long sad journey that cancer brings to lives, in this case to young folks who know it will probably catch up with them at one time or another.  Director Boone brings the tears particularly to young women Hazel's age but he misses the drama of surprise and the opportunity to hold the scenes to an effective length which provide an effective flow to the script.  There is more to this story than he was able to bring to the screen. 

  Frank Chris Jim Dave Nina Sam Howard Jennifer Kathleen  Avg. 
The Fault is in Our Stars  B-      B-   C+         A         B- 

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