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  • Writer's pictureBenjamin Maio Mackay

The Fault in Our Stars - 5 Stars

The romantic comedy-drama film starring Shailene Woodley and Ansel Elgort. Released June 5.

I was drastically unprepared going to see The Fault in Our Stars. Everyone knew this was to be a sad, emotional movie, but to what extent? From the opening voice over there was a sorrowful tone to the film, but the moments of joy also made it emotionally unbearable for the viewer, who knew the inevitable ending. The film was about young people with cancer, who knew they had a terminal illness, but were still going to make life work for them. This movie was an awe-inspiring journey from beginning to end.

Shailene Woodley delivers a strong and emotionally charged performance as Hazel Grace, a sixteen year- old with terminal cancer. There is no point during the film where you think “oh I’m watching a movie,” as from the moment it begins the viewer is entirely at the mercy of whatever the film throws at them.

The film is based on John Green’s novel and it was adapted for the screen by Scott Neustadter and Michael H. Weber. These writers deserve an Oscar for this incredibly moving screenplay.

I must also comment on the incredible acting talent of Ansel Elgort who played Augustus Waters. He successfully managed to show the journey from full health (or at the least remission) to ultimately a sad demise.

Director Josh Boone has really made this masterpiece a success, his casting is perfect and the film looks and sounds beautiful. The point of this movie was to show that life is not always a happy ending and to the credit of the cast and crew I have never been in a cinema where the entire audience were not crying, but sobbing. This movie effectively captivated and convinced everyone in the audience that these were real people in a real life scenario.

It was disappointing that the cinematography in this film was plain and nothing innovational or surprising was shown. This didn’t detract from the experience and perhaps it encouraged the viewer to remain focused on the journey of the characters. The music by Mike Mogis and Nate Walcott was powerful and helped to create and further express the characters’ emotions.

Finally I’d like to comment on Willem Dafoe as author Peter van Houten. This role is strange, quirky, but ultimately crucial to the story. Willem portrays all levels of eccentric character flaws from alcoholism to plain rudeness, but you can’t help like his character by the final scene.

Overall this is a movie that demonstrates the value and importance of life, and living life to the fullest. It features incredible performances from the entire leading cast, with strong direction, music and writing. I really think this is one of the best movies of the year. Though be prepared for a soul crushing, heart breaking movie that requires lots of tissues!

5 Stars

Review by Benjamin Maio Mackay

Movie screening courtesy of Palace Nova Cinemas Adelaide

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