Day seven: The Fault in Our Stars (March, 16)

Eight movies a week! Ops, nine, with today film in the One movie a day dare.

My TFIOS poster
I had some options for today, two movies at the theater, three at DVD... But when I came home, with a bit of a cold, tired, a little low, actually, I just wanted something familiar. Comfort food, loved movie. So, with some left over soup, hot bread and the known world of my sofa, I watched The Fault in Our Stars in cable tb. 

It was the ninth or tenth time, I'm not sure anymore. But it was just what I needed today.

Everytime I see this movie I remember a site at the time of its premiere where people got to swear at John Green for how said the story is. Fuck You, Jonh Green, was its moto. You read a book, you see a film, and it makes you cry and laugh and feel too much. So the natural result is blame the author. Nothing fairer.

What is not fair is that two lovely teens had to endure such a hard life. I know, this happens. Shit happens to everybody, in different aspects and intensity. It hurts, and there's no thermometer to measure any kind of pain. However, in this love story between two sick teen, the unfairness is what overwhelms me every time. 

I cry in different parts in each of the times I see it - however, it's sure that I'll cry at the swing set scene every time. Today, it was specially intense in the lovemaking scene. What was supposed to make me happier, let me down hard. And, again, I thought that the lack of fairness is what makes me so sad. The lack of time to live what it could have been a fulfilling life.

One point I want to highlight today. At the time the movie was released, some critics said that the Gus' character is not credible, not real. He would be too nice, too funny, too shallow, not deep enough . And despite the fact that the movie lessens some of his depth, Gus is still a strong character for me. At some point, he says that he endured a year of torture and the loss of his leg. I think that a person, specially a young one, that got throught such a dificult period in his life, learns there is another way to react to things and be with people. And I think Gus is like a compendium of this matter. And in being like this, he is admirable, not weak or silly.

I've been talking about this story for so long now that everything that I write in here sounds old to  me. Yet is still important to say how good an adaptation this movie is, with great and honest authors, a good direction and a cool soundtrack (except the Ed Sheeran song and that one about angels, both awful, sorry), even if there are many aspects that are not well sustained in the movie as in the book - what is usual in adaptations. The main aspect is that the story is there, and so are the carachters, and it is much of an achievement in adapting a book to the cinema. 

Another thing that I love in TFIOS is how it emphasises how fiction is a part of our lives. Surrounded by people that love her, the protagonist, Hazel Grace, finds understanding in a book. Nothing is able to relate to her and what she endures in the cancer treatments as a book called An Imperial Affliction. What is sintomatic is that TFIOS is important to some many people for the same reason. And the reader can relate to that. I did, despite being an adult in front of a young adults book/movie. It could understand me in ways that some of my closest friends are not able to do every time that life gets so hard (and I have amazing friends!). That is the beauty of fiction, whatever its medium: it seems so distant of real life, but it is ingrained in reality. In more ways that we are aware of. 

The Fault in Our Stars. Directed by Josh Boone. With: Shailene Woodley, Ansel Elgort, Nat Wolff, Laura Dern. Writer: Scott Neustadter and Mchael H. Weber from the book by John Green. US, 2014, 126 min., Dolby/Dolby Digital/SDDS/Datasat, Color (Cable TV). 

PS: At 2013, in a teaching internship, I proposed to adapt a scene from a book to a video, in an exercise of experiencing differentes ways of telling a story in order to understand how strongly fiction is a way to build subjectivity. The experience was great, the video is pretty good for starters, but I'm not allowed to show it here. Instead, I'll attach to this post two videos from youtube that inspired me to create the experience in class with the students, before the TFIOS movie was even produced. The first one is a great adaptation of this part on the book, better than the movie actually (there is a deleted scene in the extended version that make up for this fault in the film).

PPS: Behind the scene videos:

PPPS: Fragments: Nebraska, 2013 (How I love this movie...); Stranded in Paradise (a silly tv production) and Thor: The Dark World (I didn't disconnect myself from Tom Hiddleston's Adam yet, even if Loki is really great...).

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