Review: Paper Towns

By Christian DiMartino

John Green’s novels are wildly popular around the world (or, well, the US). I have never read one, because I have a life. But I know people who have, and love them. Hence why The Fault in Our Stars raked in as much cash as it did last year. People love that crap. People also like the novel Paper Towns, which leaves me to wonder: Did they actually pay attention?

Granted, the book and the film may be different. But I somehow get the vibe it is a faithful adaptation, and if that is the case, then this really proves what a writer Green is. I liked The Fault in Our Stars, but yet, I found the dialogue a tad pretentious. Paper Towns continues this, and to cringe-worthy results.

The trailers were corny, but I did not expect to hate this film as much as I did. The critics were a little more than generous to this film back in July. Maybe they were not looking at the big picture. Well, I did. Paper Towns is utter trash. It is a corny, pretentious, rambling, unconvincing, pointless, overlong, dull, and stupid piece of garbage.

The film revolves around a teenager named Quentin (Nat Wolff). Quentin has the hots for his neighbor, Margo (Cara Delevigne), a mysterious girl who… well, what do you say about her? Is there really much to say? She’s gone 75% of the movie. From what I gather, she is nothing but a stupid hipster douchebag, referring to herself as a “Paper Girl,” and I do not mean the kind that hands out newspapers. I do not know what I mean. I do not know what she means. Ah! It is stupid.

Anyways, the two have a past. She re-enters his life again one night, asking him to be a getaway driver or something. I do not know, but this portion of the film is kind of fun. Margo begins planning revenge schemes against those who screwed her over. I enjoy revenge, so I kind of enjoyed her schemes.

Jump forward to the next day and… she is gone, leaving behind vague clues as to where she is. Basically, what worked up to this point vanishes as quickly as Margo herself. The film also revolves around Quentin’s friends, who… well, I could not care less about. In fact, when these characters are in the face of danger (they nearly run over a cow), I had my fingers crossed that they would die, just so then the movie would end.

I am not going to continue with the plot. I do not have the energy. I do however have the energy to rant about how much I hate this movie (just enough energy). Let’s just get one thing straight: Teenagers DO NOT talk like this. Like ever. Trust me, I was one. Green’s dialogue will make you roll your eyes into your skull. His characters talk fancy, and I honestly just could not buy any of these characters as actual people. They are concepts.

I do admire its ending. Most movies give the people what they want. This one does not do that. However, it does defeat the purpose of the entire film.

Lastly, this is a film that is not as deep as it thinks it is. The dialogue could be to blame again, but nah. Let’s just blame Green. Paper Towns tries to persuade us into buying into its themes and ideas… but yet, I am not quite sure what those are. We are just supposed to believe it means something. I saw the film. It does not.

I have seen Green on videos. He is clearly intelligent… so intelligent that he wants to ram it down our throats until we gasp for air. It is probably not fair of me to judge him, since I have not read his work. But I think the film speaks for itself.

If you could not tell, I hated this movie. You Green fans can throw your pitchforks and your popcorn, I get it. But if you can tell me with a straight face that this movie is good, then… okay I have said enough.

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