John Green is definitely the obsession of this generation. After the worldwide success of the movie adaptation The Fault in Our Stars, which made over 300 million dollars worldwide, Green’s fame skyrocketed even more- turning non-readers into bibliophiles. With the recent release of Paper Towns and the not so recent announcement that Looking for Alaska will join Green’s other books on the big screen, it makes sense that critics and fans are calling him the ‘next Nicholas Sparks’.
Paper Towns is about a high school senior named Quentin. Q lives across the street from Margo, a girl that he has been in love with since they were kids. After years of barely talking, Margo shows up at his window one night asking him to help her do 9 things. Q had the best night of his life and woke up the next day confident that things between him and Margo were looking up, until he discovers that she’s missing. Throughout the movie Q finds clues that Margo left, determined to find her.
The Paper Towns movie was a lot different than I’d imagined it. Although I’d been trying very hard not to read reviews and posts about the movie, I still saw some reactions on Twitter. One thing I noticed was that everyone commented on how funny the movie was- of course the skeptic in me thought that everyone was just hyping up the movie like they did the book so I didn’t pay much attention to those tweets. I went into the theater with relatively low expectations (strangely, I wasn’t very excited for the movie) and I think the low standards helped me enjoy the movie way more than I’d thought. Everyone on the twitterverse was right, the movie was hilarious, I was laughing so hard during one scene that my face started to hurt.
During the movie I felt as if I was right there with Q, almost as if the huge screen between us had disappeared (a la Harry Potter style) and I can only attribute that to great acting on Nat Wolff’s part. Nat totally embodied the essence of Q- from the way he speaks to the way he stands. I’m not one to comment on people’s acting abilities, since I know zilch about it, but it was amazing how Nat transformed from being a confident, blind teen (as seen in The Fault in Ours Stars) into an awkward, insecure teen in this movie. I have to admit that I had some doubts when Cara Delevigne was first cast, but when Papa Green said that he was very impressed with her audition I knew that we were in good hands. Cara did a great job masking her accent as well as acting, I’m really excited to see her in future films like Pan and Suicide Squad. Overall the movie was super enjoyable and I’d definitely recommend it to anyone who loves a funny movie about friendship and ‘finding yourself’.
Warning: You’re now entering a book AND movie spoiler zone. Read at your own risk!
There are very few times when I like major plot changes in movie adaptations, that being said I absolutely LOVED the fact that the writers chose to make the road trip to New York before prom and graduation. When I read that Q not only missed his prom but skipped his graduation I was so angry! He was literally throwing away once in a lifetime moments for a girl that, in the end, didn’t want to be found by him.
Here is a quick list of changes I didn’t like:
- Angela and Radar having sex…….was that really necessary to add in?!
- missing Sea World scene
- missing scene: when Margo buries her black notebook + the story she wrote
- Q going to all the different ‘paper towns’
I also wanted to throw in how much I loved Ansel Elgort’s cameo! It couldn’t have been longer than a minute but he definitely stole the spotlight with his smile while making the audience laugh at his only line at the same time!
In the end, I really did enjoy the movie- flaws and all. I think it’s a nice break from all the dystopian and fantasy worlds I’ve immersed myself in lately. And I’ll be honest, I’m a sucker for movies about friendship, self discovery, and fun.