"Depression is not a side effect of cancer, it's a side effect of dying." Hazel Grace Lancaster (Shailene Woodley) has been through a lot in her 17 years—she was diagnosed with thyroid cancer at the age of 13, a disease that has recently spread to her lungs—and it is her terminal prognosis that has given her a wizened outlook on life and mortality. She realizes she is going to die, but so is everyone else, eventually. The difference is that she has even less time than most, and knows that she will probably never grow into an adult. A reverent but never stodgy adaptation of John Green's best-selling 2012 novel, "The Fault in Our Stars" sounds on paper like a major downer, but the story comes at its morose subject matter from a place of insight and affirmation. It's sad without wading into mawkish melodrama, and cheekily humored without becoming inappropriate or tacky.
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