Paper Towns | Movie Reviews + Features | Pittsburgh | Pittsburgh City Paper
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Paper Towns 

Much of the film follows the tired formula of examining the world of guys obsessed with unattainable girls

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This coming-of-age comedy directed by Jake Schreier and adapted from a novel by John Green (The Fault in Our Stars) doesn’t quite find its groove. It sets up its protagonist, the somewhat nerdy high school senior Quentin (Nat Wolff), who has an obsession with Margo (Cara Delevingne), the wild and popular girl across the street. The two share a crazy night of pranking, during which Margo browbeats him into having fun, then promptly disappears. This initiates a teen-detective plot in which Quentin and his two pals search for Margo, even undertaking an epic road trip. There are lessons (bitter and sweet), hugs, curiously absent parents and an unsatisfying end. Much of the film follows the tired formula of examining the world of guys obsessed with unattainable girls, and though the final reel offers some reality about the Manic Pixie Dream Girl trope, it’s delivered too late to be effective.


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