Movies · REVIEWS

The Fault in our Stars (Film)

The Fault In Our Stars Movie PosterIt is no secret that I love John Green and his books. His last novel, The Fault In Our Stars is one of the best YA books I have read. I usually recommend the book to every reader I know. I love the book so much to the point that every time someone I know asked me what to read I will shoved to them my signed copy of the book to read. In fact, that copy is still with a friend, who I asked to read the book before seeing the film.

To be honest, I’m not sure what to expect for the movie adaptation. Yes, I am excited for the film, but at the same time unsure how will it goes. Movie adaptation is mostly miss than hit for me, especially for books I love dearly which makes me skeptical sometimes. But no matter what, I still make sure to see the films. So last night, I went with my sister to watch the movie during its first day of screening here in the Philippines.

The film is extremely faithful to the book which I really appreciate. It follows Hazel Grace Lancaster and Augustus Waters, two teenagers who meet in a cancer support group. Hazel has thyroid cancer. Her “lungs suck at being lungs” so she wear a nasal tubes in her nose and drag around an oxygen tank everywhere she went. Augustus aka “Gus” is a survivor of osteosarcoma. He lost his leg during his battle but apparently he is in remission. He is determined to live — not just a life but an extraordinary one. He is full of life for a cancer patient and he wants to share that with Hazel.

Shailene Woodley as Hazel Grace Lancaster is so fitting for the role. I admire how she can easily captures a very conflicting character like Hazel Grace. She carry her strength and weakness every time she is on screen, making Hazel’s character so alive. As a cancer patient Hazel has this wit, and hope in her even after all the pain she went through, and Shailene shows all that and more. The way she deliver her lines has pain and strength which makes John Green’s complex lines from the novel convincingly powerful. If you have read the book like me, for sure you understand how big and powerful those lines are. They aren’t easy to deliver especially from a mouth of a teenager, but Shailene managed to deliver them with ease that I’m surprise that I’m not rolling my eyes or rising my eyebrows.

As for Ansel Elgort, well he got me with his grin right the moment he first show himself on big screen. Honestly, when I first heard that he was cast for the role of Augustus, I don’t believe he can own the role. He is too sweet for my liking, and Augustus in my mind isn’t like that. Augustus is cocky, confident and even idealistic but also pretentious. He is a human metaphor himself, masking his vulnerability with his self-confident. It’s his way of living his sick life or more specifically his fighting mechanism. But after seeing the film last night, I’m convinced that Ansel is the perfect Gus. He successfully deliver a good portrayal for Augustus. It isn’t what I initially want but seeing Gus character in action is still utterly enjoying. Ansel not only own the role for Gus but also makes Gus’ character incredibly sweet by pulling his charms.

To those who are worried about Shailene and Ansel’s team-up after being siblings from the film Divergent, rest assured that they made a great love team in this film. They are very convincing as a couple. Their chemistry is undeniable and surprisingly believable. They easily own the sweet young romance that evolved in the most unexpected time of two teenagers.

The film didn’t make me weep unlike when I read the book a couple of times, but it still makes me feel all the emotions I undergo through while reading. I still ache for Gus and Hazel. I smile and laugh with them along with all the movie goers at the cinema last night. I swoon and feel their love for each other and for their family and friends. I hope even I know long ago how their story will end.

The Fault In Our Stars easily the best contemporary book adaptation I’ve seen. With all the quotable lines from John Green’s novel, it is a thought-provoking story that will make you question everything you think you know about life, love and sickness. I will definitely watch again this film soon.

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Books · Movies

Book to Movie: The Fault In Our Stars (Movie Trailer)

The Fault In Our Stars Movie Poster

Here it is, the official movie trailer of The Fault In Our Stars, starring Shailene Woodley as Hazel Grace Lancaster and Ansel Elgor as Augustus “Gus” Waters. Directed by Josh Boone.

What do you think of the trailer? Me, honestly I get teary watching the trailer above. I love John Green‘s novel where this movie is based and seeing the characters, Hazel and Augustus on screen just makes me relieve the emotional roller coaster ride I experienced while reading the book. I can’t wait to watch the whole film on its released date.

Books · Movies

Book to Movie: The Fault In Our Stars (Sneak Peek)

The Fault In Our Stars Movie Poster

John Green recently uploaded a teaser trailer for the movie adaptation of his book, The Fault In Our Stars. The full trailer will hit the web tomorrow, and will be shown in theaters starting on Valentines Day! I know, we are all excited to see Hazel Grace Lancaster and Augustus “Gus” Waters on big screen but for now tease yourself with the sneak peak video below.

I’ve heard that there is a video of the movie trailer that already leaked online that’s why they are releasing the full trailer earlier than expected. I have no plans of checking the leaked version but I will surely watch the full trailer once the movie maker officially released it online. Can’t wait to see this film on the big screen!And maybe I do a reread of the novel  while waiting.

Book to Movie · Movies

Book to Movie: TFioS Movie Poster

The Fault In Our Stars Movie Poster

The Fault in our Stars is one big movie I am excitedly anticipating! The novel where this film is based is one of my favorite reads and I just love John Green!

As for the movie poster above, I think the film makers or whoever is in charge with that poster nailed it. I like that they make Hazel wear the breathing tube which simply emphasize her sickness without making her look too much  disable. I also like that they didn’t changed the font color (blue and white) of the title which is the same with what the publisher used in the first edition of the book.

On related news, there are fuzz circling online about the movie tagline, “One sick love story” criticizing the film makers or whoever think of the tagline for making joke out of two sick people’s love story, which is a dark topic discussed in the novel where the film is based.  John Green, author of the novel also said his opinion about the tagline through his Tumblr account.

I get it why some find “One sick love story”, tagline as offensive, but mostly because I assume that they haven’t read the book yet. Because if you have read John Green’s novel of the same title where this film is based you know how fitting that tagline is. “One sick love story” is something that characters would say. Possibly something Gus and Hazel would think of as their tagline for their own story. If not, they would certainly approved of it or they would laugh at it if they read the tagline themselves.

The Fault in our Stars  tells an honest and raw story of two cancer patients, Hazel Grace Lancaster and Augustus Waters, who find each other in a cancer support group. It is an heartbreaking novel that deals with sickness and death but also a humorous book. Trsut me, it’s so much more than a sad story! Okay? Okay.

As stated from the poster above, the film is due to released on June 6, 2014, which stars Shailene Woodley and Ansel Elgort as Hazel Grace and Agustus Waters respectively. I’m really excited to see this heartbreaking & heartwarming story on big screen! 

Book to Movie · Books · FEATURES · Movies

Book to Movie: Books I Want to Read Before The Movie Comes Out

Last time I posted a list of books that I want to read before the adaptations hits the big screen, I actually accomplished reading four out of five books I listed. Though not all them I read before watching the film, I still manage to enjoy reading all four books. Now that there are more books turning into movies I’m planning to catch-up with my reading once again. Hopefully I’ll be able to read all books before I get to see the film adaptation.

And with so many books turning into films, I’m glad that some of them I already read way back, such as The Mortal Instruments series, Percy Jackson and the Olympians series, The Hunger Games series, Divergent series, The Fault in our Stars, If I Stay and Where She Went, Daughter of Smoke and Bone series, and others Young Adult books. It just means less books for me to read before the movie adaptations comes out. Anyway, here are the top four books I want to read before their film adaptations comes out.

Ender's Game

Ender’s Game by Orson Scott Card

Winner of the Hugo and Nebula Awards

In order to develop a secure defense against a hostile alien race’s next attack, government agencies breed child geniuses and train them as soldiers. A brilliant young boy, Andrew “Ender” Wiggin lives with his kind but distant parents, his sadistic brother Peter, and the person he loves more than anyone else, his sister Valentine. Peter and Valentine were candidates for the soldier-training program but didn’t make the cut—young Ender is the Wiggin drafted to the orbiting Battle School for rigorous military training.

Ender’s skills make him a leader in school and respected in the Battle Room, where children play at mock battles in zero gravity. Yet growing up in an artificial community of young soldiers Ender suffers greatly from isolation, rivalry from his peers, pressure from the adult teachers, and an unsettling fear of the alien invaders. His psychological battles include loneliness, fear that he is becoming like the cruel brother he remembers, and fanning the flames of devotion to his beloved sister.

Is Ender the general Earth needs? But Ender is not the only result of the genetic experiments. The war with the Buggers has been raging for a hundred years, and the quest for the perfect general has been underway for almost as long. Ender’s two older siblings are every bit as unusual as he is, but in very different ways. Between the three of them lie the abilities to remake a world. If, that is, the world survives.
Ender’s Game is the winner of the 1985 Nebula Award for Best Novel and the 1986 Hugo Award for Best Novel.

Movie release date: Nov. 1, 2013
Starring: Asa Butterfield, Abigail Breslin, and Harrison Ford

The Wolf of Wall StreetThe Wolf of Wall Street by Jordan Belfort

In the 1990s Jordan Belfort, former kingpin of the notorious investment firm Stratton Oakmont, became one of the most infamous names in American finance: a brilliant, conniving stock-chopper who led his merry mob on a wild ride out of the canyons of Wall Street and into a massive office on Long Island. Now, in this astounding and hilarious tell-all autobiography, Belfort narrates a story of greed, power, and excess no one could invent.

Reputedly the prototype for the film Boiler Room, Stratton Oakmont turned microcap investing into a wickedly lucrative game as Belfort’s hyped-up, coked-out brokers browbeat clients into stock buys that were guaranteed to earn obscene profits—for the house. But an insatiable appetite for debauchery, questionable tactics, and a fateful partnership with a breakout shoe designer named Steve Madden would land Belfort on both sides of the law and into a harrowing darkness all his own.

From the stormy relationship Belfort shared with his model-wife as they ran a madcap household that included two young children, a full-time staff of twenty-two, a pair of bodyguards, and hidden cameras everywhere—even as the SEC and FBI zeroed in on them—to the unbridled hedonism of his office life, here is the extraordinary story of an ordinary guy who went from hustling Italian ices at sixteen to making hundreds of millions. Until it all came crashing down . . .

Movie release date: Nov. 15, 2013
Starring: Leonardo DiCaprio, Jonah Hill, and Matthew McConaughey

The Book Thief

The Book Thief by Markus Zusak

Set during World War II in Germany, Markus Zusak’s groundbreaking novel is the story of Liesel Meminger, a foster girl living outside of Munich. Liesel scratches out a meager existence for herself by stealing when she encounters something she can’t resist–books. With the help of her accordion-playing foster father, she learns to read and shares her stolen books with her neighbors during bombing raids as well as with the Jewish man hidden in her basement before he is marched to Dachau.

The country is holding its breath. Death has never been busier, and will become busier still.

Movie release date: Jan. 17, 2014
Starring: Sophie Nélisse and Geoffrey Rush


The Maze Runner

The Maze Runner by James Dashner

The first book in the New York Times bestselling Maze Runner series—The Maze Runner is a modern classic, perfect for fans of The Hunger Games and Divergent.

When Thomas wakes up in the lift, the only thing he can remember is his first name. His memory is blank. But he’s not alone. When the lift’s doors open, Thomas finds himself surrounded by kids who welcome him to the Glade—a large, open expanse surrounded by stone walls.

Just like Thomas, the Gladers don’t know why or how they got to the Glade. All they know is that every morning the stone doors to the maze that surrounds them have opened. Every night they’ve closed tight. And every thirty days a new boy has been delivered in the lift.

Thomas was expected. But the next day, a girl is sent up—the first girl to ever arrive in the Glade. And more surprising yet is the message she delivers.

Thomas might be more important than he could ever guess. If only he could unlock the dark secrets buried within his mind.

Movie release date: Feb. 14, 2014
Starring: Dylan O’Brien, Kaya Scodelario, and Patricia Clarkson

There are more books plan to turned into a movie that I want to read but I didn’t include in the above list because they don’t have released date yet or the target released date is too far from now. Some of these books are Gone Girl by Gillian Flynn (which I actually started reading but haven’t finished yet), Chaos Walking by Patrick Ness, and Miss Peregrine’s Home for Peculiar Children by Ransom Riggs.

What about you, any books you want to read before the movie adaptation comes out? What book are you most excited to see on big screen?

Movies · RANDOM THOUGHTS · Reading

The Last Bookshop (Short Film)

Have you ever wonder what it would like if printed books doesn’t exist anymore? Where books is like an extinct thing no one knows or care about? Where book stores died out completely? I stumble a video on YouTube that shows a future without books. It is a short film written and co-directed by Richard Dadd with Dan Fryer. It tells the story of a boy who stumbles upon the last remaining bookshop. It stars Joe Holgate as the boy and Alfred Hoffman as the shopkeeper. Watch this heartwarming video below that show a glimpse of a possible future.

What do you think of the short film? Do you think it is possible to really lost books and book stores? With the increasing market of electronic books, sales for printed books is surely affected. There are big book stores and printing companies that already shut down because of this. Somehow I feel guilty for owning a kindle, where I read some of electronic books I bought online. But I’m a kind of person who still buy printed books even I already read the story from my Kindle. I only buy electronic books of those titles I can’t get my hands because it won’t be available in my location or those books that I want to read right away but isn’t available yet from our local book stores.  Which is why I sometimes end up spending twice for the same title.

I also love seeing books consuming the space of my room, and since electronic books can’t be added in my book shelves I love buying and collecting printed books. But I also don’t want physical books to be just for collecting, that’s why when I do rereads I still choose physical books over electronic books.

Though I like the convenient of carrying a small, thin and light device for travel reading, I still prefer reading physical or printed books. There is a joy in holding physical books. The sounds of flipping the pages, the feeling of crisp paper in my hands, and the smell of dead trees with its printed words carries so much wonderful experience. Like the stories and information inside each books, the physical book offers wonders to readers.

I myself can’t imagined what it would be like to grow up never knowing what a book is. I don’t want the possibility of the future generations not experiencing the joy of reading, holding and even smelling books. I would be sad to see someone who don’t even know how to open a book, like the kid in the video.

I don’t know about you, but after this, I am definitely going to the book store across our street to buy a paperback or hardbound copy of any book from my to-buy  list. Reading won’t be the same if physical books were lost.

Movies · REVIEWS

The Twilight Saga: Breaking Dawn Part 2 (Film)

When I found out that I’m getting two tickets for the Philippine premier of The Twilight Saga: Breaking Dawn 2, I get excited to see the film. But since there were only two tickets, it is difficult to choose who will I bring with me to watch, knowing that a lot of friends wants to go. I almost decided to ditch it and just giveaway the tickets to two of my blog followers. But since I still have to personally claim the tickets an hour before the showing, it will be a hassle for me to organized the giveaway in a little amount of time. So I end up going to the event and invite the most Twilight fanatic friend I know, Chai. We went to Greenbelt, Makati last Wednesday night with the other movie goers who are all excited to see the movie a night before the regular showing. There are some raffles and giveaways too before the film showing but I can feel that the crowd is more interested for the movie to start than the giveaways.

Breaking Dawn Part 2 picks up directly where the first part of Breaking Dawn Part 1 left off. Bella wakes up with her ruby eyes as a newborn vampire and adjust pretty fast to her newly acquired strength. As a vampire her senses become much stronger. She sees everything in remarkable details, she hear even the slightest sounds, smell even the farthest blood and move awkwardly fast. Her strength is not to be challenged, if you have doubt just ask Emmett. As as newborn basically Bella is what everyone around her expects her to be, except for one thing. She is so comfortable in her new self to the point of being too controlled which isn’t normal for a newborn. Part of her new life is being a vampire wife to Edward and a mother to their fast growing newborn daughter, Reneesme. Reneesme is a half-human and half-vampire who poses an unknown threat to vampire existence which makes her the target of the most powerful clan of vampires, the Volturi. But the Cullen coven is determine to keep Reneesme alive, thus begins the final adventure of this final installment to Stephanie Meyer’s vampire mythology.

If you’ve seen the first four films of this series, you may agree with me that the adaptation didn’t start great. The first installment (Twilight) isn’t much a great movie compare to other movies that was released that year. But this final installment erased all the bad memories of the previous films. It definitely salvaged the whole franchise adaptation by leaving a satisfying and entertaining ending.

Everything that happens on the first part of the film were pretty much the same with the book. The difference comes mostly on the last part where all the actions scenes is happening. Personally I like the changes they made from book to the film. It give so much room for surprises that even the hardcore Twilight fans will get shock and caught off guard. I give applause to the director and screenwriter for delivering a simple storytelling trick with cunning skills. I honestly didn’t see that twist coming which makes the changes effective and satisfying.

My emotions were high and my mind was boggling during the intense fighting scenes. If the emotional moment holds more time I might even end up releasing all those feelings into tears. But with the fast-pacing scenes all I can do is absorbed what is happening while questioning most of it. For someone who read the book before seeing the film adaptation, I can’t help but compare what I’m seeing on screen and what I’ve read few years ago. And seeing the differences just keeps me busy that I haven’t realized ahead of time the possible ending.

As much as I want to give more details and explain why this movie is the best of all Twilight Saga films I don’t want to give any spoilers. Because this movie won’t be as effective as it is if you watch it with spoilers. And for those who haven’t seen the previous installments, I think it is better if you watch the first four films before this one. The story wont make sense if you start this saga with this final installment. And some scenes may not be as powerful as it is if you are not invested to the characters like most fans of this series.

The movie also wrap the whole series in a classy note by showing every actor of twilight saga films a little screen time during the credits. Even those who aren’t part of the this final installment were there. It leaves me memories and flashbacks of the other previous films of this phenomenal series of Stephanie Meyer.

Again kudos to the film makers for finishing this movie adaptation with a heart and dignity. And thank you for leaving us a memorable movie experience.