The Fault in Our Stars

THE BATTERY discs

Welcome back to This Week In Discs! If you see something you like, click on the title to buy it from Amazon. The Battery The zombie apocalypse has left America a wasteland of the undead with pockets of mankind struggling to survive. Two former baseball players forced by the situation to become fast friends travel the country looking for supplies and safety, but their different personalities and views on the situation lead to dramas far removed from the flesh-eating varieties. Zombies have been ubiquitous in the horror genre for years now with three out of every five horror films focusing on them as their monster of choice. (I totally made that up, but it feels right.) The vast majority of them are pretty damn terrible, but once in a while a real gem comes along, and one of the best is this American indie that dares find the humanity in a story about the inhuman. It feels like a drama, but a lack of flesh-chewing scenes doesn’t mean it’s devoid of horror as the reality these men find themselves in is a terrifying one. Writer/director Jeremy Gardner (who also plays one of the two leads) is a refreshingly smart new voice in genre film-making. [Blu-ray/DVD extras: Commentary, making of, outtakes, featurette, trailer]

read more...

Katie Holmes in Thank You For Smoking

Joey Potter, if there was any doubt you’d make it out of the Creek and make it big, that’s rightly been shattered. Katie Holmes is continuing her streak of pushing haters to the left and taking on unique, out-of-character projects by tackling her directorial debut with All We Had. Variety reports the drama, also a starring vehicle for Holmes, is an adaptation of the recently released Annie Weatherwax novel of the same name, scripted by Josh Boone. Boone’s name may sound familiar, as he just directed the self-refilling teenage pond of tears and despair called The Fault in Our Stars last spring. This means he has ample experience in dealing with misery and emotional mayhem, which will bode well in writing the movie — it’s a story centered upon a mother and her 13-year-old daughter who are struggling to hold their heads above water and escape poverty.

read more...

Radius-TWC

This will probably be difficult to believe for some of you, but we walk into every movie hoping it will be the best movie. We may criticize a trailer or point out early concerns, but once we sit down and the movie starts digitally unspooling before our eyes our hope every single time is to experience something fantastic. When a film succeeds on that front we shout it from the highest virtual rooftops, but that isn’t always the outcome. The pure flip-side of this of course are the movies we leave absolutely despising. Usually the films in this group aren’t exactly surprises — think Blended, Transformers: Age of Extinction, Sex Tape, Hercules — and while we hoped for better we ended up with pretty much what we expected. But sometimes the movies we expected more from end up being major disappointments too. A quick poll of the staff revealed a pretty varied list of films fitting this description, some of which are viewed as unqualified successes by the rest of us. Keep reading to see ten of the movies that left us unsatisfied, underwhelmed and ultimately disappointed.

read more...

Dallas TV Show JR

The best movie culture writing from around the internet-o-sphere. There will be a quiz later. Just leave a tab open for us, will ya?

read more...

Tom Cruise Dumbfounded in Edge of Tomorrow

The best movie culture writing from around the internet-o-sphere. There will be a quiz later. Just leave a tab open for us, will ya?

read more...

Why Charlie Brown Why

Youth, love and cancer. That’s a formula of sorts, one that conquered the world back in 1970 with Love Story and has since bounced back and forth between Hollywood and the Lifetime network. The most recent incarnation is The Fault in Our Stars, an adaptation of a Young Adult novel by John Green, starring Ansel Elgort and Shailene Woodley. It’s getting decent reviews and may very well be a head above the rest of the genre, to the extent that one can use the word “genre” to describe this mini-phenomenon. Yet what I find the most interesting about this particular sort of film is the way it might be seen as something of a psychological education. The fact that The Fault in Our Stars is a YA novel has raised some eyebrows and ruffled some feathers, in particular given the anger evoked by a Slate piece shaming adults for reading the book. While I’d object to the idea that YA books are exclusively for teenagers, I wonder whether we can consider them somehow proscriptive texts. Is The Fault in Our Stars, at least in part, trying to introduce young people to the concept of serious illness? That’s an open question. It’s also a good an excuse as any to look back at a particularly fascinating cartoon. Why, Charlie Brown, Why? is a Peanuts TV special that first aired in the spring of 1990. As you can probably tell from the title, it isn’t exactly the subtlest educational cartoon in television history. Like The Fault in Our Stars it is a […]

read more...

Pink Ribbons Inc.

Telling stories about cancer is a hazardous endeavor. So many books, movies and television episodes have exploited the subject for easy, mawkish sentimentality. It’s almost reached the point of dog whistle manipulation — “Look, this person has cancer. Now cry. Cry.” John Green’s young adult novel The Fault in Our Stars was written as a conscious effort to avoid these pitfalls. I haven’t read the book, so I don’t know if he succeeded. But I have seen the new movie based on the book, and I know that it does not. The Fault in Our Stars opens with the main character narrating to the audience how the events that follow are “The truth. Sorry.” That “sorry,” a semi-ironic wink, is there to immediately set the film apart from, say, a Hallmark movie. But while it tries to talk a tough, emotionally honest game, it doesn’t follow through on it. The truth is that the movie is just as nakedly, unashamedly manipulative as any other critically derided cancer movie. And no amount of philosophical pretension can cover that up. I choose Pink Ribbons, Inc. as a documentary alternative not because it is also a movie about cancer but because it really picks apart the way we treat cancer in our culture. READ MORE AT NONFICS

read more...

20th Century Fox

We’re told from the very beginning that this is a different kind of cancer story. There will be no Hollywood fluff or gloss here says our narrator and lead character Hazel (Shailene Woodley). Instead, she’s going to tell us the cold, hard truth of what it’s like to be a teenager facing a health-related death sentence. Well, the cold, hard truth as filtered through a slightly less glossy Hollywood lens anyway. Hazel’s childhood cancer has moved into her lungs leaving her a teenager whose constant companions are an oxygen tank on wheels and a pair of tubes up her nose. She spends her days re-reading her favorite book and watching with wistful eyes as young couples in love live their lives around her until a chance meeting with a fellow cancer survivor named Augustus (Ansel Elgort) leads not only to her very own love story, but also to a new appreciation for metaphors. Despite Hazel’s`protests to the contrary, The Fault In Our Stars belongs to a dramatic sub-genre that consists primarily of young love and deadly illness. It’s most always cancer because cancer is a bitch like that, but the steady theme through this and films like A Walk to Remember, Here on Earth and Love Story is that life is short and every moment — especially the ones when you’re in love — should be fought for and cherished. And if you can find a way to smoothly transition the memory of Anne Frank from metaphor to foreplay? That works too.

read more...

Edge of Tomorrow

May was a rough time for major releases. With The Amazing Spider-Man 2 and A Million Ways to Die in the West, the first month of summer blockbusting got off to a messy start and ended with an equally toxic finish. Although I’m not a fan of Godzilla and X-Men: Days of Future Past, they have their supporters, so maybe May wasn’t as bad of a month as I’m pegging it as. Maybe it’s just that when a studio comedy as tedious and frustrating as A Million Ways to Die in the West comes around, it’s always going to poison the whole calendar page. Thankfully this summer is about to receive a large improvement, because there’s a terrific blockbuster coming out this Friday. While the Tom Cruise-starring action movie isn’t tracking so hot, let’s hope the tides change and people flock to Edge of Tomorrow. Plus, there’s a solid amount of releases this month you should plan to see. Here are the must see movies of June 2014:

read more...

The Fault in Our Stars

Later this week, John Green‘s beloved YA new classic, “The Fault in Our Stars,” will hit movie theaters in the form of a cinematic adaptation, appropriately titled The Fault in Our Stars. The film’s title has already caused plenty of tongue-twisting trouble (just this morning, The Today Show‘s Al Roker referred to it as “The Fault in the Stars” without missing a beat or issuing any kind of correction, bless his heart). The film’s relatively heavy subject matter — it follows a pair of teenagers, played by Shailene Woodley and Ansel Elgort, who meet and fall in love in a support group for kids who have cancer — means that it should come with a certain level of respect. This isn’t the kind of film that you make fun of, that’s just bad manners and bad karma, but its unwieldy title isn’t helping matters. Even more serious? Green’s title is inspired by a line penned by Shakespeare himself, and the book’s Wikipedia page tells us that it’s “inspired by a famous line from Shakespeare‘s play Julius Caesar (act 1, scene 2). The nobleman Cassius says to Brutus, ‘The fault, dear Brutus, is not in our stars, / But in ourselves, that we are underlings.’” You don’t want to mangle that, do you? Let us help, with ten ways you should not refer to this week’s latest tearjerker.

read more...

summermovieprediction_week6

Welcome to week six of our 2014 Summer Box-Office Challenge! Think of it as a summer-long contest for movie-lovers — you’ll make predictions and guesses as to which summer movies will rule the box-office each week, we award points and at the end of the contest the three top point-earners will each win a Blu-ray/DVD prize pack! First place will win ten (10) Blu-ray/DVD titles released throughout the coming summer, second place wins five (5) and third place wins two (2). We’ll have bonus questions each week as well to help bolster your point totals and keep you in the running. The box office estimates from this past weekend put Maleficent at #1 with $70 million. It’s a shame as it’s not a good movie, but at least we can take comfort in the far stinkier A Million Ways to Die in the West only managing a third place opening behindlast week’s champion, X-Men: Days of Future Past. The estimate makes it too close to call just yet between the two nearest players, Gary Salem and Jamie Boyde — so the rankings below are based on estimates and will be updated once the actuals come in. Here are the current standings for our contest (with the understanding that they may change once actuals come in later today). [UPDATE: The actuals are in, and Maleficent made $69.4 million meaning the point dispersal remains unchanged. However, an earlier error has been addressed resulting in a single change to the top five.] Chris B – 16 points Husain – 15 pts […]

read more...

The Fault In Our Stars

Late last night, as you were attempting to watch Mad Men or Game of Thrones, or file your taxes at the last minute, you might have heard an eerie howling carried in the wind through your open window, making you pause for a minute and consider the possibility of something terrible afoot. Nope, it was just the sound of thousands of teens simultaneously freaking out while watching the MTV Movie Awards — the first clip from The Fault In Our Stars was released during the broadcast, and it was positively swoon-worthy. Stars is the highly anticipated adapatation of the YA novel by John Green that has a near cult-like following at this point by teens and younger readers. The story follows Hazel Grace Lancaster (Shailene Woodley), a sixteen-year-old girl suffering from cancer whose parents make her attend a support group meeting for young patients. There she meets Augustus Waters (Ansel Elgort), an ex-basketball player whose beaten bout with osteosarcoma cost him his leg in the process. The two strike up a friendship over their unfortunate bond, as well as their passion for books, and as these things happen, they begin to fall for each other as well.

read more...

stars

Quick, like a bomb going off, young actress Shailene Woodley made an impact in Hollywood. All it took was starring opposite George Clooney in The Descendants and she was made. Honestly, people were only buzzing about her for about fifteen minutes and she had already lined up a dozen or so new jobs starring in adaptations of various, popular works of youth-oriented literature. Recently we’ve started to see the end results of those early deals, and so far the results have been good. Though The Spectacular Now was a bit more of an acting showcase for the equally great Miles Teller, Woodley continued to convert fans with her performance as the female lead there, and now we have a trailer for her latest YA adaptation, The Fault in Our Stars, which not only seems to be a film that shines the spotlight fully on her growing star, but is also one that gives her the inherent drama of a deadly illness to tug at our heartstrings with. This one should be an easy layup for her. Now she’s a shoo-in for being the favorite actress of a whole new generation of weepy teen girls. Or, at the very least, this thing looks a lot more promising than that questionable Divergent movie they’ve also got her starring in. That one’s encroaching just a little bit too much on Jennifer Lawrence’s turf for comfort.

read more...

The Fault in Our Stars

Author Nicholas Sparks has built an entire empire based on writing books about people who have terminal illnesses falling in love. It turns out he’s not the only guy out there with an interest in cancer romance though, because John Green got into the game with his 2012 novel “The Fault in Our Stars,” and he earned quite a bit of critical acclaim for his efforts. Well, given the quality of the source material, and given the fact that Hollywood has made about a gajillion dollars adapting Sparks’ weepy nonsense into movies, plans are now in the works to make a The Fault in Our Stars movie. According to THR, Fox 2000 is putting the project together with young director Josh Boone on board to helm and Twilight and Safe Haven vets Wyck Godfrey and Marty Bowen on board as producers. Boone is new enough to the game that you probably haven’t heard of him yet, but his debut film as a writer/director, Stuck in Love (formerly Writers), shows a lot of promise for a first time filmmaker and is scheduled for release in the US in April, so chances are you might know who he is soon.

read more...
Twitter button
Facebook button
Google+ button
RSS feed

published: 11.21.2014
D
published: 11.21.2014
B+
published: 11.19.2014
C+
published: 11.19.2014
B-, C


Some movie websites serve the consumer. Some serve the industry. At Film School Rejects, we serve at the pleasure of the connoisseur. We provide the best reviews, interviews and features to millions of dedicated movie fans who know what they love and love what they know. Because we, like you, simply love the art of the moving picture.
Fantastic Fest 2014
6 Filmmaking Tips: James Gunn
Got a Tip? Send it here:
editors@filmschoolrejects.com
Publisher:
Neil Miller
Managing Editor:
Scott Beggs
Associate Editors:
Rob Hunter
Kate Erbland
Christopher Campbell
All Rights Reserved © 2006-2014 Reject Media, LLC | Privacy Policy | Design & Development by Face3