THE FAULT IN OUR STARS – A Review by John Strange

The Fault In Our Stars
By: John ’Doc’ Strange
Directed by: Josh Boone
Cast: Shailene Woodley, Ansel Elgort, Laura Dern, Nat Wolff, Sam Trammell, Willem Dafoe, Mike Birbiglia
MPAA Rating: PG-13 (for thematic elements, some sexuality and brief strong language)
Selig Rating: FULL PRICE
Runtime: 125 Min.
John Green’s story of life and love resonates with his readers and has been translated to the big screen.  Hazel Grace Lancaster (Shailene Woodley) is a teenaged girl dealing with the cancer which has damaged her lungs.  Her life is complicated enough carrying the oxygen compressor everywhere she goes (not to mention a mother (Laura Dern) who is just so danged poitive all of the time). 
Forced to attend a cancer support group at a church, Hazel Grace meets a rather strange young man, Augustus Waters (Ansel Elgort). Gus has lost one of his legs above the knee but none of his sense of humor.  Slowly, Hazel Grace and Gus become friends.
This film is an amazing rollercoaster of emotions as the two friends slowly find their friendship blossoming into love.  Their trip to Amsterdam to meet the author of Hazel Grace’s favorite book is a well turned journey which is highlighted by an amazing dinner complete with complete with champagne at an beautiful restaurant.  The other end of the emotional spectrum is, unfortunately, in attendance when the author, Van Houten (Willem Dafoe), turns out to be a bitter drunk who refuses to talk to them about his book.
When I first saw the synopsis of this film I thought it was going to be another “kids have cancer, kids beat cancer (or not)” story.  I was wrong.  This is a story about love.  Love, which shows us that life is worth living no matter what obstacles are in our path.  Love, that we need to rejoice in for whatever length of time we can get it.  Love, that doesn’t end when someone’s life ends, it only changes when we give up.  Never give up, never stop loving.
Go see The Fault in Our Stars.  Carry a couple of handkerchiefs or stop by the concession stand and grab some napkins.  Trust me, you’ll need them.  You’ll cry but feel oddly energized at the same time.  You may come out of the film with the desire to call family or friends you haven’t spoken to in a while to let them know you love them.  It’s a good thing.
Movie Site:
The Selig Rating Scale:
FULL PRICE – Excellent movie, well worth the price
MATINEE – Good movie
DOLLAR – OK movie
CABLE – No need to rush. Save it for a rainy day.
FREEBIE – Good that I saw it on the big screen but wish I hadn't paid for it.
COMMERCIAL TV – Commercials and cutting to the allotted time will not hurt this one.
FORGET IT! – Bad. If you see this one, do yourself a favor and keep it to yourself.
GET YOUR TORCHES – BAD! – Burn the script, the writer, the director and maybe even the actors!
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