Josh Boone’s hotly-awaited screen adaptation of The Fault in Our Stars has been released in the US to widespread positive reviews.
Shailene Woodley and Ansel Elgort star as cancer patients Hazel Grace and Augustus Walters who fall in love after meeting at a teenage support group.
As John Green’s original novel already has a solid fanbase, expectations for the movie were high, with the trailer beating One Direction’s concert film to become the most-liked in YouTube’s history.
Dianne Garrett from The Wrap has warned viewers to prepare hankies for an “unabashed tearjerker” but promises that while The Fault in Our Stars is “glossy Hollywood sad”, it manages to be “cathartic without being too much of a bummer”.
Woodley has been hailed as the star performer, with Screen Daily calling her “note-perfect in capturing the emotional swirl of living and losing” and Variety praising her as “never-better”. Elgort fails to match Woodley but is “charming enough” in his leading role.
The latter review goes on to describes The Fault in Our Stars as walking “a knife’s edge between heart-on-sleeve sensitivity and crass exploitation for its entire running time”, before deciding that it largely remains on the right side of the divide.
Film industry insider The Hollywood Reporter notes that the film’s greatest strengths come from Green’s novel, which “resolutely refuses to become a clichéd cancer drama” and instead creates “vibrant, believable young characters”.
Green himself has given Boone’s movie the thumbs up and said he is pleased that the Hollywood adaptation has remained true to the emotion of his book.
Nat Wolff, Sam Trammell and Laura Dern also feature in The Fault in Our Stars, due for UK release on 19 June.