Friday, July 24, 2015

Paper Towns Movie Review

As usually just left the theater and came straight home to do a review. Before I get started on all the juicy details there are two things I want to go right ahead and get out of the way. First, yes, WE GET BLACK SANTA!!!! and Two the cameo that was hinted at is as perfect as people said. Seriously when "it" happens everyone in the theater died. So happy, so cheeky, so John Green. Loved both of these things. 

On too the movie and the review. If you don't know Paper Towns is about a boy named Q who is just floating through his last few weeks of high school. He mainly just hangs out with his two closet friends, pining over his crush from childhood from afar, and living within the comfort zone he has made for himself. That is until his crush, Margo, sneaks into his room one night asking him to come with her to right 9 wrongs. 

First casting for this film was spot on. We know that Nat Wolff (Q) is going to be adorable, sweet, and entertaining. It's a given, he's just so charming. He nails awkward teen boy right on the head. We know Cara Delevingne (Margo) was going to be fun to see for her first "real" on screen performance. And yeah, she was great to watch... But there is no doubt in my mind who really stole the show. Justice Smith (Radar), Austin Abrams (Ben), and Jaz Sinclair (Angela). These up and comers really made this film. Especially Austin Abrams, who brought so much comic relief to this film. The moments he is on screen are so hilarious. There wasn't a second he was present that I didn't find myself laughing. Both Austin and Justice brought so much life to Radar and Ben. If anyone else would have been casted I don't think the film would have been as fun as it was. Nat, Justice, and Austin have so much on screen chemistry there's no way you wont fall in love with these three. They're the perfect band of misfits. All these characters managed to capture all the teenage angst you're hoping for. 

Paper Towns is a coming of age story that manages to avoid labels therefore avoids a lot of the usual cliches. Don't stress though it is for sure a John Green film. It's relate-able, fun, and of course packs a powerful message.  The pace of the film matches that of the book. It starts off with a bang, levels out in the middle, then delivers a strong ending. Like TFIOS, Paper Towns stays pretty close to the reading material it's based off. Though there is one big change from the book to film, there is no question as to why it was changed. It gave the story more of a push (in my opinion) to a more a proper ending. Even the small/"big" changes were perfectly done and I feel readers of the book wont be disappointed in the things that are altered. If you're not a reader than the ending might be something you wont see coming...the story ends in a way that manages to defy expectations and eschew the "teen-movie-romcom" norm. The ending was personally my favorite part of the film. The prank scenes are fun and will have you laughing, the little details are much appreciated, and the heavier moments hit hard much like the book.

Paper Towns isn't my favorite John Green book... because lets be real, nothing compares to TFIOS. I think the film surpassed the book, and for that I'm thankful. Paper Towns is a film about living each moment, about seeking a great perhaps, and about seeing people for more than face value. All these wonderful values are laid out for us and delivered so strongly. Really satisfied with the film and it has me very excited about seeing the soon to be Looking for Alaska. The casting, direction, and soundtrack were all stunning. Very happy with the way this sweet film played out and I don't think John Green fans will be disappoint. Great summer film.

9/10 Stars