The Perks of Being a Wallflower
Running Time: 102 minutes
Starring: Logan Lerman, Emma Watson, Ezra Miller, Kate Walsh, Dylan McDermott, Nina Dobrev, Paul Rudd
Directed By: Stephen Chbosky
Rating: 8 out of 10
A freshman, who is battling depression, must try and survive his first year of high school with the help of two quirky seniors.
I wish Hermione Granger cast the spell Obliviate on me. That is so I could watch this movie all over again for the first time. And the award for nerdiest comment of the year goes to….this guy! There are certain movies that just seem to connect with me and this was one of them. The Perks of Being a Wallflower is the story of Charlie. He is a loner, an introvert, and he is depressed. He is a freshman in high school and is befriended by two seniors, who teach him about the joys of living life in the real world.
Charlie is played by Logan Lerman. I have never really liked Lerman in past roles (3:10 to Yuma, The Three Musketeers) as he was pretty one dimensional, not to mention annoying. He has changed my mind about him with this movie. He is shy and yet takes risks. He is geeky and yet charming when he needs to be. He can be aloof and then shockingly violent. He is rebellious but also very bookish. Most of all, he seems natural and is a very likeable guy. He plays so many different versions of the same character, that one can be only super impressed with his performance. He is supported by Patrick, played by Ezra Miller. Patrick is an outgoing, flamboyant personality that seems to have fun with life. He brings Charlie into his world without a thought to social status. Miller channels a truly believable character and adds a certain kind of panache to the role without going overboard. Sam is played by the pixyish, Emma Watson, as she tries to find herself outside of Harry Potter world. You don’t need to worry about her as she is going to be just fine. She will struggle a little as she still looks fourteen, but she looks to be having fun in this and is entirely believable as a best friend or a crush. She has a solid emotional range and that will only get better with time.
Director Stephen Chbosky has put together a great little film. I cannot say if this does the book justice, as I have not read it. This film is so good though, that I will be reading it very shortly. It is beautifully shot, and the viewer feels he is right there with Charlie as he battles to survive. The musical score is perfect and it somehow is able to catch the essence of the teenage mind perfectly. The casting is sound, pacing is strong, and the situations are nostalgic. Great job and I can’t wait to see what Chbosky will do next.
I give this movie a recommendation as no matter what your social status was back in the day, there are a few smiles or tears embedded somewhere in this film, if you care to look.
T Factor + If you like indie films, than this could score higher on the rating scale.
T Factor – If you do not like films that involve depression, then this could score lower on the rating scale.
If you liked this film reel recommendations: Garden State, Breakfast Club.