Paper Towns appears in an aspect ratio of approximately 2.40:1 on this Blu-ray Disc. Overall, this was a positive image.
On a smidgen of softness ever cropped up here, mainly in some low-light shots. Otherwise, the movie showed nice clarity and delineation. Jagged edges and moiré effects failed to appear, and edge haloes remained absent. Print flaws also stayed away from this clean image.
Apparently even “young adult” flicks aren’t immune to Hollywood Standard orange and teal. Overall, the hues were fine for their visual choices. Blacks showed good depth, while low-light shots boasted nice clarity. This was a solid “B+“ presentation.
As for the film’s DTS-HD MA 5.1 soundtrack, it gave us competent sonics most of the time as well as a little pep on occasion. A character-based piece like this didn’t need to boast a rock-em, sock-em mix, so the audio seemed acceptable. Usually, the soundfield didn’t have a lot to do; it concentrated on good stereo music and general ambience.
Audio quality was fine. Speech seemed natural and concise, without edginess or other concerns. Music appeared fairly full; the score could’ve been a bit more vibrant, but it came across with reasonable definition. Effects remained clear and accurate, with some pretty solid low-end response during louder moments. This became a satisfying track.
The Blu-ray comes with a mix of extras, and we launch with an audio commentary from director Jake Schreier and author John Green. Both sit together for a running, screen-specific look at the source novel and its adaptation, cast and performance, story/characters, sets and locations, music, and related areas.
Schreier and Green show a nice chemistry and make sure this becomes a likable chat. They cover a solid array of subjects and remain engaging even when they indulge in some semi-inevitable happy talk. This becomes an enjoyable commentary.
Four Deleted Scenes fill a total of three minutes, 54 seconds. We find “Minivan” (1:10), “Margo Leaves Clues” (0:32), “Be Yourself” (1:05) and “Teenage Rebellion” (1:05). We also locate an Alternate Scene (1:57). The deleted scenes tend toward general character/plot exposition without much of interest on display.
The alternate just gives the boys a different song to sing when they’re scared; instead of the Pokemon theme, they croon Taylor Swift’s “Shake It Off”. It’s no better or worse than the existing sequence.
The deleted scenes – but not the alternate – come with optional commentary from Schreier and Green. They tell us a little about the shots as well as why the clips got the boot. They remain likable and informative.
The Making of Paper Towns lasts 21 minutes, nine seconds. It involves Green, Schreier, producer Wyck Godfrey, writers/executive producers Scott Neustadter and Michael H. Weber, executive producer Isaac Klausner, Green’s assistant Rosiannna Halse Rojas, and actors Nat Wolff, Cara Delevingne, Justice Smith, Halston Sage, Jaz Sinclair, and Austin Abrams.
“Making” discusses the real-life notion of “paper towns”, adapting the novel and aspects of a production team, cast and performances, story/characters, Schreier’s impact on the movie, Green’s involvement during the shoot, and sets. Some interesting info occasionally arises, but the tone remains puffy and promotional, so don’t expect much substance.
Under Lightning Round, we get two separate clips. The first offers a chat between Green and Wolff (8:04), while the second features Green and Delevingne (5:15). Green tosses mostly off-beat questions at the actors, though a few more serious topics arise. Nothing especially deep emerges, but Green’s entertaining enough to make these clips enjoyable. Delevingne is so annoying that she almost harpoons her segment, though.
A Gag Reel goes for three minutes, eight seconds. It shows the usual array of goofs and giggles, so don’t expect anything different than the norm. It’s probably sillier than most since it involves so many younger actors.
Four Promotional Featurettes come next. We find “Memorable Moments” (1:04), “Coming of Age” (1:15), “Road Trips” (1:15) and “Lurlene” (1:02). Each one takes place in a van and offers notes from Green, Sage, Delevingne, Smith, Sinclair, and Wolff. They offer some general reflections on story, characters and themes. These do remain promotional, so they give us little of interest.
Finally, we find a Gallery. Its 24 pictures mix shots from the movie and from the set. It seems forgettable.
The disc opens with ads for Maze Runner: The Scorch Trials, Me and Earl and the Dying Girl and The Fault In Our Stars. Sneak Peek adds promos for If I Stay, Teen Wolf Season 4 and The Longest Ride. We also find the trailer for Towns.
A second disc provides a DVD Copy of Towns. It lacks “Making of” as well as the deleted and alternate scenes, but it includes the Blu-ray’s other extras.
If you expect anything new or inventive from Paper Towns, you’ll end up disappointed. The movie sticks us with annoying, self-absorbed characters and never becomes an involving journey. The Blu-ray provides very good picture, suitable audio and fairly interesting supplements. A lackluster coming of age tale, Towns falls flat.