Movie Review: Paper Towns

According to this movie, a “Paper Town” is a town listed on a map that doesn’t really exist so that if someone else copies this map then having a fictional town on a map would make it more obvious that this map was illegally copied. I guess this makes sense, but for this movie its an unusual bit of information that nobody really knows that makes the movie more interesting.

The teen movies of the 80’s and 90’s were all the same; definitely not artsy or cerebral but mostly about teen problems and sex, but this year there have been two movies about teenagers that have been completely different and unusual and unlike anything I have ever seen. The previous movie, also reviewed on this blog was “Me and Earl and the Dying Girl” and now this movie “Paper Towns”. “Me and Earl and the Dying Girl” was highly unusual and different but for the most part too unusual and weird to be considered by this reviewer as a good movie. Its one thing to try to be different that anything done before, but its another level to make a movie that is unusual and is of a high quality and keeps your attention, but most importantly in the end has a satisfying conclusion. Of these two movies, “Paper Towns” is the better one mainly because it has a better story and is not trying to be so different than other movies that it forgets what makes a movie enjoyable to watch in the first place. In other words, its not a good idea to make a movie just because its so unusual and different, it also has to be good too.

The story of “Paper Towns” is about a girl who takes a different direction in life because when she was a very young girl she discovers, along with a young male friend of hers, a 36 year old man who had committed suicide over his depression over his divorce. After this horrible discovery at a very young age, the girl is so deeply affected that she is not interested in living a normal boring life like everybody else. After this scene in the beginning of the movie, the story goes into different directions, defining the friendship of the young mans two friends and their lives in high school which are very boring and average but does not focus on the high school life of the girl at all, which I consider to be an obvious flaw in this movie.

The conclusion of this movie is about the girl, who is now in her late teens and about to graduate high school, deciding to leave home before graduating but leaving some clues so her friend can somehow figure out where she went to, which is ultimately a paper town in New York State. The attempts of her friend and his friends to try and locate this girl involve a long road trip from Orlando Florida to New York State and this trip was funny and enjoyable for the most part. During this trip were times when some scenes were boring and went into unexpected directions, but ultimately the ending and ultimate conclusion was satisfying and believable, which was not the case with “Me and Earl and the Dying Girl and considering the main story of this movie was also very depressing in the end.

I do recommend this movie.

Writing a different kind of Screenplay