Reviews

The Perks Of Being A Wallflower

3

Emma Watson hits college after graduating from Hogwarts

American high school movies come in two main varieties; the casually quippy (Superbad, Easy A) and the earnestly drippy (My Girl, Dead Poets Society). The Perks Of Being A Wallflower is a decent stab at the latter.

Adapted from director Stephen Chbosky’s own ’90s-set novel, Perks stars Logan Lerman as Charlie, a shy freshman whose school life improves once teen sophisticates Patrick (Ezra Miller) and Sam (Emma Watson) befriend him.

Charlie’s voiceover guides us through an episodic story which begins with “1,385 days till graduation” and takes in alcoholism, bulimia, depression, domestic abuse, drugs, heartbreak, homophobia, sex abuse, suicide and unrequited love along the way.

On top of these, Chbosky layers multiple references to music and movies (The Smiths, The Rocky Horror Picture Show, David Bowie’s ‘Heroes’…) These teens don’t crack wise - they’re too busy making affected pronouncements like “I feel infinite” but their emotional rawness will strike a chord with the intended audience.

And if the film doesn’t grate too harshly on adult sensibilities either, that’s down to a great performance from Lerman, who plays an introvert character with charm and vulnerability.

“There are people who forget what it’s like to be 16, when they turn 17,” says Charlie in his closing monologue.

Oldsters, consider yourself warned. For the young and young-at-heart, however, this is a film worth seeing.

Verdict:

Logan Lerman delivers a career-making turn in this sweet, sincere film. It might not be a massive hit, but it will certainly ease a few paths through the awkwardness of adolescence.

Film Details

User Reviews

    • uriahromero

      Dec 31st 2012, 17:08

      5

      The Perks of Being a Wallflower is definitely a movie modeled after the typical high school student. Emma Watson and the others did a great job playing the most unlikely circle of friends. One of my DISH coworkers read the book, and invited me to see the movie. I really liked it, considering it was made after a book. I liked it enough to add it to my queue on Blockbuster @Home from DISH. It’ll be nice to get the movie without having to make a trip across town to check the Redbox once it is available on Blu-Ray.

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