I wasn’t planning to watch this movie any time soon. But I had to take this one for the team! So those who asked and those who are wondering and haven’t asked, this post is for you.
If you follow my blog, you know I’ve read and reviewed this book giving it 2 stars. With that said, I wasn’t expecting much from this movie. But I still went to see it with this mantra on my mind:
Sometimes when you are reading a book, you can’t bond with the characters no matter what. That’s what happened to me when I read TFiOS. I knew these kids where going through a hard sad time but I was just not sobbing moved by their “struggles” while reading. Don’t know if it was the writing style or what but I wasn’t moved enough.
The opposite happened with the movie.
Shailene Woodly is a convincing Hazel. I had pictured her different in my mind when reading the book, but after the first few scenes in this movie, she grows on you. You know she’s dying even though she might not look like it. Her performance of the eulogy was sad and uplifting at the same time. Yes, I got all teary eyed with her speech. And in that last scene, it’s impossible not to say with a teary eye: Okay Shailene, Okay.
Ansel Elgort playing Gus is a different story. The book’s Gus is supposed to be cool and wise beyond his years. The movie’s Gus was over-confident and arrogant. This will sound cheesy but “he had her at hello“. His super power of attraction was just not believable. And for a teen virgin supposedly on remission, his parents were invisible, he came and went like a 30 year old living in a suburban man cave.
Gus is supposed to be the boyfriend all teenage girls in the world dream, want and deserve. Gus was not that boy for me in the book and he wasn’t that boy for me in the movie. I’m sorry girls of the world, I’m not into Ansel. No hormones were excited. He’s not my cup of Joe. Sorry Gus, but no okay for you. 😦
The parents were perfectly cast. I immediately bonded with Hazel’s mom. It’s too bad that like in all teenage dramas, parents are left in the background. I wish we could’ve watched more scenes of Hazel interacting with her parents. That scene where the mom comes out in a towel, brilliant! It really made the point of how much this woman loves and cares for her daughter, and the sacrifices she does daily for her. You just want to hug her. The parents, specially the mom get an Okay parents, Okay.
Isaac and Van Houten get an Okay, Okay too. In my score card Isaac wins over Gus. He was brilliant in the few scenes he got. He brings the right amount of humor balanced with sweetness to the movie. And Willem Dafoe as expected does a great job as Van Houten. You hate him but you completely understand his point of view. No complains.
The movie’s script was written by Scott Neustadter and Michael H. Weber. I don’t know whose decision it was but it was a brilliant decision. These two did a great job in bringing this book to life. They put on film only what was needed. Although I still think the kiss at the Anne Frank house is unnecessary. (I just hope teens don’t invade the Anne Frank house from now on only to imitate the said kiss.) And for a PG-13 movie, that sex scene was pretty explicit. Other than that, like I said, they did a great job “editing” John Green’s book. And that ending, let me tell you: brilliant. Changing the last lines from “I do.” to “Okay.” made complete sense. Simply brilliant. Without spoiling it for those of you who haven’t seen it, that last scene, unlike the book, gave me complete closure. The story felt complete, in my humble opinion.
With that said, the script gets what I tweeted after watching the movie:
Ok Scott Neustadter and Michael H. Weber, OK.
— Bloggeretterized (@Bloggereterized) June 29, 2014
So there you have it folks, visualizing the characters and removing the unnecessary stuff from the plot is what makes in my humble opinion The Fault in Our Stars movie sadder than the book. Now don’t get me wrong, it’s only sad. That’s it. It is NOT weeping-sobbing-heartbreaking-tragic-painfully sad à la Beaches or Steel Magnolias but it was sweet and moving.
Okay you guys?
Hope you enjoyed my post. Hope you enjoy watching the movie. And keep your questions coming. I like answering them. ‘Till the next one! 😉
p.p.s Pre-order your movie here. 😉