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Pain, Price Of Intimacy And The Inevitability Of Fate In The Fault In Our Stars

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Baz Luhrmann’s Romeo + Juliet and Josh Boone’s The Fault in Our Stars share similarities closely intertwined; both romance-tragedies share key themes regarding the necessity of pain, price of intimacy and the inevitability of fate. Equally, they question the impact of love in two different respects, both of which consider death but more importantly, that love surpasses the difficulties of living.

Mortality and its prelude pain, share a distinct presence being ubiquitous to both tragedies, as even within the first moments of both films we learn of the deaths soon to come. As a build-up of water is located in her lungs, Hazel has learned to adapt to pain her entire life. Yet she fears the emotional pain of those around her when she eventually passes, this being evident in her questions she asks Peter Van Houten in Amsterdam and her metaphor of being “a grenade” and ‘feeling obliged to minimize the casualties”. However, when Gus succumbs to his osteosarcoma spreading, Hazel learns that pain not only must be lived with but is a direct scar of love, she wouldn’t have it any other way, pain is the consequence of great memories of Augustus and her love for him surpasses that pain. The sacrifice she is willing to make is well summarized in Hazel’s eulogy for Gus, “If you want the rainbow you have to deal with the rain’.Similarly, in Romeo + Juliet, love bears pain and in the climax of the film both Romeo and Juliet are subjected to the worst pain they would experience. Subsequently ending their lives in hopes of being reunited in death. Suffering in Romeo + Juliet is brought on by love, and alike The Fault in Our Stars the ultimate sacrifice is made in pursuit of love and is paid in pain. The director of both films displays love is the most important part of living through the sacrifices characters make for it.

Love overcomes pain

Love is shown to be the binding element of both films and the catalyst to hurt. In Romeo + Juliet the forcefulness of Romeo’s love is shown as a violent rush that overpowers their beliefs and catapults them into defiance of their family and isolation. The film centers more around the barriers that obstruct their passion rather than its blossoming. The climax of their love proves that love is brutal and further, that “violent delights have violent ends”. As Romeo puts it “love is too rough, too rude, too boisterous, and it pricks like a thorn.” But despite its brutal nature it can bares the potential to resolve conflict. Romeo and Juliet’s love ends the ancient feud between the Capulets and Montagues. No matter how long hatred festers, love can overcome it. True love not only refuses to surrender to hate but also has the greatest power of ending hostility. Josh Boone’s depiction of love in The Fault in Our Stars is of a similar sort. Love is shown to have a bittersweet ending with Hazel cherishing the memories of Gus. Hazel states such a similar thought opening Gus’ eulogy with “Without pain, how could we know joy?”. Both films prove that love conquers hardship and is worth its turmoil.

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Coming of age

The path to maturity is yet another driving factor for the plot of both films. For both Hazel and Augustus, their cancer is paired with their passage toward adulthood and the story unfolds as they grapple with coming of age in the face of their diagnoses. The relationship they develop is stunted by the fear of thier inevitable deaths and the process of transitioning into adulthood is subsequently a difficult one. Death helps Hazel see the importance moving on, a virtue neither Romeo nor Juliet were seen to have. Being blinded in irrational love, their unsteady transformation into adults was cut short from the ramifications of their emotions. Over four days, Romeo is subject to many situations that mature him and make him a more experienced individual. For example, he makes the decision to avenge the death of Mercutio, which leads to the death of Tybalt, which leads to his exile.


The importance of love is a key theme well defined in both films, and ultimately, overcomes the cost of its survival. Through the resolving of conflict and overcoming of trauma, both films highlight the inherent virtues of love and the powers that accompany it.

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Pain, Price Of Intimacy And The Inevitability Of Fate In The Fault In Our Stars. (2022, March 17). Edubirdie. Retrieved June 10, 2023, from
“Pain, Price Of Intimacy And The Inevitability Of Fate In The Fault In Our Stars.” Edubirdie, 17 Mar. 2022,
Pain, Price Of Intimacy And The Inevitability Of Fate In The Fault In Our Stars. [online]. Available at: <> [Accessed 10 Jun. 2023].
Pain, Price Of Intimacy And The Inevitability Of Fate In The Fault In Our Stars [Internet]. Edubirdie. 2022 Mar 17 [cited 2023 Jun 10]. Available from:
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