I just got out of a special screening of The Perks of Being a Wallflower, a movie I have been very excited for for a number of months, it’s based on a brilliant novel by Stephen Chbosky, a book I haven’t read in about 6 years but loved very much the first time I did read it. I am sad for most of the people in my home city as there, at this point, are no theatres showing the film so I’ll just have to let you know what you missed to the best of my ability in this review without giving away too much by way of spoilers. Onward to my spoiler free review!
The Perks of Being a Wallflower is about a boy named Charlie (Logan Lerman) and his freshman year of high school. He starts off the year with no friends, just himself hoping to make it through the year. At a football game he befriends a senior named Patrick (Ezra Miller) and another senior named Sam (Emma Watson) and their friendship grows very quickly. What we see throughout the rest of the film is their year together at the school, relationships they go in and out of, dances they go to, and them just being around each other like best friends do in high school. Charlie falls in love with Sam, which really isn’t hard, I mean come on, it’s Emma Watson, and there’s a very familiar story there for many people who have ever fallen for a girl or a boy for that matter. We slowly learn about Charlie’s past through the movie, with the final upsetting details learned at the tail end of the film and by the end a lot has happened and it hits you really hard.
I say it very easily when I say that from what I remember I enjoyed this movie more than the book, if the book was life changing, this movie was even more so. Chbosky was hired to adapt the book, which is just a series of letters written by Charlie, into a screenplay, and he did so in a way that was just as, if not more powerful and successful than his beautiful novel. I think the reason both the book and the movie are so successful are because the characters speak to everyone, Charlie is a little bit of all of us when we were in high school, some more than others, but Sam and Patrick are us too. There were times when I was sitting there thinking to myself “Yeah, that was totally me” or “I know exactly what that feels like to go through” and I know that there were others in the audience from the reactions to certain moments that felt the same as me.
The only main actor I was familiar with was Emma Watson and it was a pleasure seeing her come out of the character from Harry Potter that we all know her so well for. Not once during the movie was I thinking about anything to do with her as Hermione Granger, she was Sam, no one else. I also think that it was worth mentioning that Watson’s American accent was very impressive, it wasn’t the best I’ve ever heard but it was very well done for someone who I’ve never heard without a British accent before. Well done! Logan Lerman gave a very strong performance as the main character Charlie, he had a lot to convey as the character and he had to put a lot of emotion into it, there were definitely times when I would tear up when he was on screen for multiple reasons. Yes, I’m an emotional wreck of a human being and I was choked up at the end of the film, screw it, I had tears streaming down my face, it was a powerful movie. Ezra Miller played Patrick, a gay teen who is in a relationship with the captain of the football team, but the only two that know are Sam and Charlie, he did a very great job in this role, he is someone I can’t wait to see more of in the near future. I really enjoyed every part with him, he was funny and serious at the same time and nearer the end of the movie he was falling apart, and because of that I was falling apart, he projected the feelings his character was going through so well that he made me feel them.
The Perks of Being a Wallflower is the best film I’ve seen all year to this point. It did everything I want a movie to do for me, it made me laugh, it made me cry, it entertained me for 103 minutes, there were great performances and believable characters, REAL characters who could be any of us and probably we were them at one point in our lives. I did not want this movie to end, I can’t even say that about The Dark Knight Rises or The Avengers and I loved every moment of those movies. When it did end I was ready to sit through it for anther hour and thirteen minutes just so I could watch it again and again. I can easily say that I will be buying this BluRay the day it comes out and it better have fantastic special features.
So should you go see The Perks of Being a Wallflower? Did you go to High School? Were you ever a teenager who had any thing emotional ever happen to you? Did you or any of your friends go through tough times, were they or you ever bullied, made fun of, or hurt on any emotional or physical level? If you answered yes to any of these questions you should go see this movie. No you NEED to see this movie, and then go read the book. This movie is an important piece of film making, I’m not saying that it’s going to revolutionize film, or that it’s the greatest piece of cinema ever made, I’m saying it’s important because it’s real life, real life like no movie has really ever shown before. We all have parts of us in these characters and it’s something that you need to see, it will stir up emotion and it may make you upset on a very personal level, but it’s something that needs to be seen by everyone.
The Perks of Being a Wallflower: 10/10
But hey, that’s just my opinion, this movie really made me feel things movies don’t make me feel, it spoke to me. What are your thoughts? Let me know in the comment section below, I love to read your comments and I will reply. Have a week.
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