I’m, like, not the target demo for movies like Paper Towns, which is an adaptation of a YA book by John Green, author of “The Fault In Our Stars.” (I didn’t “like” the 2014 film version that much, but I didn’t obsessively hate it either — it drained me.) To go by reviews, Towns is a teen-angled dramedy about love and obsession with a kind of mystery element (i.e., where’d she go?). I’m 85% certain I’ll hate it, but you have to focus on that 15% potential. You have to take things as they come.
But I also have to be clear and say that my primary animus is, in this instance, not adaptations of YA novels as much as Nat Wolff, an obviously live-wired and nimble-witted actor (as well the 20 year-old son of thirtysomething costar Polly Draper) who plays the male lead.
Over the last four or five years, Wolff has costarred in a series of passable, tolerable, mildly acceptable and in some cases achingly sincere relationship films — New Year’s Eve, Peace, Love, & Misunderstanding, Stuck in Love, Admission, Palo Alto, Behaving Badly, Grandma — about people who are hurting or insufficiently loved or turned around in some way. Most of these films have made me feel irked or unhappy or otherwise unsatisfied, and so I’ve passed them on to Wolff. The dissatisfaction is his fault, his doing. Kidding but on a certain level not. I saw his face on the poster and went “oh, Christ.”
The director of Paper Towns is Jake Schreier (the allegedly not too bad Robot and Frank). The Paper Towns screenplay is by Scott Neustadter and Michael H. Weber, who also wrote 500 Days of Summer and The Spectacular Now, and who adapted The Fault In Our Stars.