The Fault in Our Stars ★★★½

The latest sappy teenage romance novel turned sappy teenage romance movie managed to do something quite unexpected: be good. It may not have the authenticity of Woodley's other romdram The Spectacular Now or the unadulterated heart of Blue Is The Warmest Color, but Josh Boone's The Fault In Our Stars delivers on a level seldom seen in the genre. The source material is borderline illiterate (anyone who says the book was better than the movie is either a 14 year old girl or someone with the emotional maturity and intelligence of a 14 year old girl), but Shailene Woodley and Ansel Elgort's stellar performances transcend the script's flaws. The use of subtle post-rock instead of over-the-top empathy-evoking music gives it the feel of an indie film without any of the creativity. Bottom line, Josh Boone is somehow able to make all the cliché Hollywood plot devices work in a way that Nicholas Sparks can only dream of.