Director: Jake Schreier
Cast: Nat Wolff, Cara Delevingne, Austin Abrams, Justice Smith, Halston Sage, Jaz Sinclair, Cara Buono, Josiah Cerio, Hannah Alligood, Meg Crosbie, Griffin Freeman, Caitlin Carver, RJ Shearer
Genre: Drama, Mystery, Romance
Age Rating: 12A/PG-13
Running Time: 109 Minutes
A random 2 for £20 purchase from HMV including SPY left us watching PAPER TOWNS last weekend. We had seen a lot about this film around its release in June last year, but we had never got round to catching it at the cinema.
The film tells the story of Quentin (Nat Wolff), a regular high-school teenager about to graduate, and his life-long crush Margot (Cara Delevingne) who disappears after an all-night adventure with him. Believing that Margot has finally fallen for him, and that this is his opportunity, Quentin rallies his best friends Ben (Austin Abrams) and Radar (Justice Smith) together to embark on an east coast journey of a lifetime, a few days before prom, to follow Margot’s mysterious clues, find her and declare his love for her.
Even though the description above portrays this film as a run of the mill teen romantic comedy, PAPER TOWNS is far from that. With the almost anti-romantic Cara Delevinge playing the leading female role, this was always going to be a quirky tale, and that it is.
Nat Wolff is believable and relatable as Quentin, and what I like about him an his friends in this film is that the director hasn’t gone down the stereotypical route of simply making them all ‘geeks’. They have girflriends, genuine love interests and a sense of personality about them, and personally the two friends Ben and Radar actually carry this film and bring the comedy that it so greatly needs.
The story is decent but not overly impressive. It has a few very weak aspects of it, and ultimately the ending of the film is pretty anti-climatic and in all honesty normal, which is perhaps what the director was going for here.
Overall, I enjoyed PAPER TOWNS, but I was not blown away by it. It is a clear sign of the changing face of teen romantic dramas, but personally I believe THE DUFF was the stand out teen release between these two. I enjoyed Jake Schreier’s style of directing, and I definitely look forward to catching some more quirky features from him in the future. I am not a huge fan of Cara Delevingne, and once again she plays the rebellious and mysterious character she tends to choose in films, but I enjoyed her performance more than I thought I would, and her and Nat Wolff had great chemistry, which perhaps could have been used better with a more impressive storyline.
Recommendation: Not necessarily worth the money for a purchase, but definitely worth a watch when it graces the likes of Amazon Instant Video and Netflix!