‘The Fault in Our Stars’ is satisfying

It’s a metaphor, see.

As I took my seat at the theater, being one who has read the book, I had premonitions about “The Fault in Our Stars” movie.

It becomes a bit of a routine. I read the book, then excitedly await for the movie to come out, only to be disappointed by actors’ portrayals or omitted scenes and lines.

Surprisingly, in this case, I left the theatre satisfied.

I came in with the “killing thing” — my prejudgment — but didn’t give it the power to kill the movie for me.

Author John Green’s part in producing the movie may be credited to the reason why the movie does the book justice. Although some parts were left out of the movie, such as mention of Augustus Waters’ girlfriend who died of cancer, the movie overall included the most important parts of the book.

Shailene Woodley plays Hazel Grace Lancaster, a teenage girl battling cancer and the thought of her being a “grenade” to everyone she loves when she dies. She doesn’t want to be pitied for her disease. Instead, she wants to “minimize the casualties” she’ll create when she dies. Woodley gives a great performance, especially in the scene where Hazel blows up after meeting her favorite author, Peter Van Houten, who turns out to be a rude, lonely drunk after his daughter dies of cancer, and doesn’t please Hazel with his explanation to the ending of his book.

Augustus Waters, the witty, metaphor-loving boy who becomes Hazel’s “star-crossed lover,” is brought to life by Ansel Elgort. He brings his confidence and charm into Augustus’ character to correctly portray the boy that fears oblivion and wants to leave his mark on the world while giving Hazel Grace a “forever within the numbered days.”

Nat Wolff plays Isaac, who becomes heartbroken after his girlfriend Monica breaks up with him before a surgery that will make him permanently blind. The sarcasm and cynicism he gives to Isaac’s portrayal creates the comedic relief within many serious scenes, such as his rage after his breakup in Gus’ room or his eulogy at Gus’ “pre-funeral.”
The cast was one of many things that makes this movie a hit. Another is the equal moments of comedy, romance and sadness that had the audience bursting with laughter, cheers, and by the end, sobs and teary-eyes.

Hazel’s monologue throughout the movie effectively shares her thoughts and insecurities that would have lessened the importance of key themes had her narration been left out.

The soundtrack included songs by many great artists such as Ed Sheeran and English singer Birdy, whose song “Not About Angels” shows off her amazing vocal range when Hazel leaves the cemetery where Gus’ funeral was held. This song couldn’t have been more perfect for this scene. BIrdy’s chilling voice creates the right mood for one of the saddest scenes of the movie, and explains that “it’s not about angels,” which Hazel reveals she doesn’t believe in while Gus says he believes in “Something.” As she leaves the cemetery, Hazel states that funerals aren’t for the dead, but to comfort the living. It’s not about angels — which Gus can be considered to be now — but about Hazel Grace’s and Augustus Waters’ “little infinity.”

“The Night Before Our Stars,” a special showing in select theaters on June 5, the day before “The Fault in Our Stars” nationwide release, included a live Q&A session with the cast, and John Green himself.

While most of the questions were directed towards the cast, some were asked at Green and gave a glimpse at his insight of the book. In one case, he explained that Hazel’s worry over Sysyphus the Hamster, a character in her favorite book “An Imperial Affliction” — which is a fictional book — is to just mask her actual concern about the main character, Anna’s, mother. She wants to know how Anna’s mother moves on after Anna dies, because Hazel is worried about her own mother’s state after she loses her battle with cancer.

Being part of the special event gives you more understanding of the movie and even the book itself if you missed some of these themes.

One thing that I wish Green had spoken to is that the last line from the novel, “I do, Augustus. I do.” is changed in the movie to “Okay.” — an inside joke shared between Gus and Hazel that is meant to be their “always.” The novel’s ending signifies Hazel’s content with her “choice” of Gus hurting her by dying after their short romance, and also may imply a symbolic marriage between the two lovers. I thought this quote was significant in revealing this theme from the novel, and by replacing it, the movie fell short from that.

Despite that, its popularity on bookshelves made its way to theaters across the nation, making “The Fault in Our Stars” one of the best movies to start off summer vacation.

“Okay” doesn’t even come close to describing this amazing story. It will leave viewers wanting more, as Hazel Grace and Augustus wanted more from “An Imperial Affliction.” Reading the novel for the first time (or third time), or rewatching the movie over and over may get the “feels” out of your system.

Just remember that some infinities are bigger than other infinities, and “The Fault in Our Stars” can be described as an infinity bigger than most.