The Fault in Our Stars (Original Motion Picture Soundtrack)

Music review by
Amanda Nojadera, Common Sense Media
The Fault in Our Stars (Original Motion Picture Soundtrack) Music Poster Image
Must-see movie's soundtrack is a mix of love and heartbreak.

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age 8+
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A lot or a little?

The parents' guide to what's in this music.

Positive Messages

Although Birdy's voice is hauntingly sad, she acknowledges that "it's not about, not about angels" but about the love Hazel and Gus share in the present tense. "While I'm Alive" reminds teens to "keep on breathing and live" in the moment. Birdy's duet with Jaymes Young on "Best Shot" offers a sweet look at love and how "nothing can stop us if we believe."

Positive Role Models & Representations

The characters of Hazel and Gus both could be considered positive role models, as they exhibit strength, loyalty, intelligence, courage, and kindness. Ed Sheeran's "All of the Stars" includes references to the book, and the music video features fan art and words of encouragement. Some of the artists on the soundtrack, such as Birdy and Lykke Li, have read the book or, after watching parts of the film, felt inspired to lend their songs or write original tracks.

Violence

There's an undercurrent of loss among these tracks. For instance, "All I Want" by Kodaline is about the pain of losing someone, and, with the film as context, the loss feels as though it's from a death, not a breakup. The Swedish rap song "Bomfalleralla" has plenty of violent imagery, but only Swedish-speaking listeners will know what the words mean.

Sex

The film for which this soundtrack was created has some mature content about teens falling in love and losing their virginity; as such, some of the tracks are reflective of that theme and evoke feelings of love and longing. The Swedish track "Bomfalleralla" has graphic and lewd sexual references, but only Swedish-speaking listeners will know what the lyrics mean.

Language

The songs here are all clean. (However, translated into English, "Bomfalleralla" has profanity.) 

Consumerism

This collection was released to support the movie of the same name.

Drinking, Drugs & Smoking

In "Boom Clap," Charli XCX sings, "First kiss just like a drug / under your influence / You take me over, you're the magic in my veins / This must be love." The lines "Went looking for reverence / Tried to find it in a bottle" are mentioned in Jake Bugg's "Simple as This."

What parents need to know

Parents need to know that The Fault in Our Stars soundtrack includes 15 songs -- some of which were written specifically for the movie -- plus a bonus track. There's a mix of folk, electro-pop, and indie-rock from big-name artists including Ed Sheeran, M83, Birdy, Grouplove, Charli XCX, and more. There's a Swedish rap song called "Bomfalleralla" with profane, sexually lewd, and violent lyrics, but listeners who don't speak Swedish won't know what the words mean. There isn't any other iffy content to worry about, except one vague drug reference in Charli XCX's "Boom Clap," which includes the lyrics "First kiss just like a drug / under your influence / You take me over, you're the magic in my veins / This must be love." Listeners who've seen the movie or read the book likely will associate the songs with the subject matter of the story -- which includes teens falling in love, losing their virginity, and dealing with loss and death.

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Teen, 13 years old Written byjohnstewart August 20, 2014

What's the story?

Director Josh Boone reveals in the liner notes how music, especially M83's "Wait," and John Green's best-selling novel The Fault in Our Stars helped him cope with the death of a close friend who passed away from stage 4 lung cancer. Boone teamed up with veteran music supervisor Season Kent -- who helped with the music for The Spectacular Now which also starred Shailene Woodley -- to create the perfect soundtrack for this epic story of love and loss.

Is it any good?

As Augustus says, "That's the thing about pain. It demands to be felt." Although there are plenty of heartrending ballads -- including Ed Sheeran's emotional "All of the Stars," Kodaline's bittersweet "All I Want," and Lykke Li's melancholic "No One Ever Loved" -- there are songs that inspire listeners to live life to the fullest, such as Birdy's piano-driven "Not About Angels" and STRFKR's upbeat "While I'm Alive." Grouplove's euphoric anthem "Let Me In" and Charli XCX's energetic, electro-pop track "Boom Clap" highlight the excitement of falling in love. The standout track, however, is M83's "Wait," which builds "slowly, and then all at once" and sends you on an emotional rollercoaster that only goes up.

Talk to your kids about ...

  • Families can talk about the soundtrack. Why do you think director Josh Boone and music supervisor Season Kent decided to include so many tracks from big-name artists?

  • Does music help you cope with grief? Are there any songs in particular that have helped you deal with the loss of a loved one?

  • Do you like the inclusion of Afasi & Filthy's "Bomfalleralla" on the soundtrack?

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