Love through pain: Redbox Film Club, “The Fault In Our Stars”

“The Fault in Our Stars” remains true to its poignant, painful, and quirky source material.


Tyler Davis, Writer

The modern love story has become so overdone and predictable that most serious appreciators of cinema have grown tired and cynical of romance films. No doubt many rolled their eyes when seeing the trailer for “The Fault In Our Stars,” a film based on the book by internet hero John Green. Thankfully this movie avoids the Nicholas Sparks approach to the genre that quite frankly, makes most people makes most people want to gag rather than shed cathartic tears.

Thankfully, “The Fault In Our Stars” is much more like “Garden State” than “Safe Haven.”

The film follows the quirky and independent Hazel Lancaster (Shailene Woodley) who has terminal cancer and her relationship and Augustus Waters (Ansel Elgort) who experienced a bout of cancer a year and a half prior. Hazel is initially tentative about entering into a relationship with anyone as a terminal cancer patient, but the two find themselves together. But the film does not solely focus on their romance, it explores the idea of heroes and the inevitable disappointment that follows meeting them when the pair meet Hazel’s all-time favorite author, Peter Van Houten. The film centers on the theme of pain, which people either face head on or attempt to run away from. “Pain demands to be felt” is an oft repeated quote from Hazel’s favorite book.

Though the film centers around two teenagers with cancer, it avoids being too forlorn and is filled to the brim with comedic moments. This gives the film its realism. We too often think of people with cancer as perpetually depressed. While this may be true at times, more often than not they are able to laugh and enjoy the life they have.

Though not quite as powerful as the book it was based on, “The Fault In Our Stars” carries the heart of John Green’s story and brings it to life beautifully and organically. Whether you are a fan of the book or not, this film is undoubtedly worth seeing.

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