Film review: Paper Towns (12A)

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Last year’s The Fault In Our Stars exceeded many people’s expectations and did great at the box office – bringing in $300million worldwide – so it’s no surprise that we’re seeing another John Green novel adaptation just a year later.

Paper Towns is a coming-of-age drama about an anxious teen named Quentin (Nat Wolff) and his quirky neighbour Margo (Cara Delevingne). The story opens on the boy narrating about how he became best friends with the free-spirited girl next door until social labels pulled them apart. He’s now the school nerd and lacking in confidence, while she’s popular and cool.

Just when Quentin is about to lose all hope of their relationship blossoming again, Margo turns up at his house and invites him on an all-night adventure through their hometown – which just so happens to be the best night of his life.

The very next day, Margo disappears leaving behind cryptic clues for Quentin to decipher. The search leads Quentin and his friends on a journey where they’re not just looking for the girl, they’re looking for themselves. Apologies for that cheesy and clichéd line – but hey, this is a cheesy and clichéd film.

It’s a shame because the film-makers were clearly attempting something different, but this is ultimately nothing we haven’t seen before – with Paper Towns unlikely to stick in your mind much past closing credits, but you should find this an enjoyable watch nonetheless.

The movie particularly becomes pleasurable during a road-trip – where more time is invested in the supporting characters that provide a few laugh-out-loud moments. Nat Wolff and Cara Delevingne have genuine on-screen chemistry, but I wasn’t rooting for them like I was with the leads in The Fault In Our Stars.

But nonetheless this is still an enjoyable watch – and an ideal date movie for young adults.

Rating: 3/5 Mikey Clarke