‘The Perks of Being a Wallflower’ Movie Review – Love, Love Love
There are no two ways about it, I adored The Perks of Being a Wallflower, it’s one of my favorite films this year, but before I get into why, let’s first talk about what The Perks of Being a Wallflower is about.
Based on the young adult novel of the same name by Stephen Chbosky, who also wrote the screenplay and directed the film, The Perks of Being a Wallflower is a coming-of-age story. Taking place in 1991, we meet Charlie (Logan Lerman), a socially awkward teenager who recently lost his only friend after this one took his own life. Charlie is starting his first year of high school without any friends, but a group of charismatic seniors take a liking to him and Charlie is suddenly exposed to a new and exciting world full of love, parties, midnight screenings of The Rocky Horror Picture Show and “Heroes” in a tunnel.
Among his new friend, we meet the beautiful Sam (Emma Watson) and her fearless stepbrother, Patrick (Ezra Miller). These two will have an immense impact in Charlie’s life as he continually struggles with his past. There is also his English teacher, Mr. Anderson (Paul Rudd), who takes a special interest in Charlie and introduces to the world of literature.
Unfortunately, all of this cannot shelter Charlie from his past forever and as his friends are getting ready to go to college, he will have to find a way to deal with it all.
I cannot even begin to explain the emotional roller coaster this film took me on. One minute I’m laughing, the next I’m crying my eyes out (which is always embarrassing in a room full of journalists… scratch that, it’s really embarrassing everywhere), and then I have a knot in my stomach as I go on this journey with Charlie.
Logan Lerman is a shinning light in this film. I have been a fan of his since The WB series Jack & Bobby and as he gets older, he becomes more and more brilliant. He is without a doubt one of the new phenomenal talents in the movie scene, and in The Perks of Being a Wallflower, he will steal your heart away.
But The Perks of Being a Wallflower doesn’t just have Lerman, it has an incredible cast overall. Emma Watson completely makes you forget that she used to be Hermione Granger in the Harry Potter movies, with this new part. I honestly didn’t once think of her as any other character than Sam while watching the film and that’s saying a lot since I’m a huge Harry Potter fan. She brings so much to the character of Sam and I cannot think of anyone else who would have seemed so genuine for the part.
And then there is Ezra Miller who’s another gift to the cinematic world. I first noticed him in City Island and then there was his haunting performance in We Need to Talk About Kevin, and now his engaging portrayal of Patrick. It really felt like the part was written for him.
I also want to make a special mention of Paul Rudd, whose character has some beautiful moments with Charlie. Those were some of my favorite scenes. The rest of the cast should also be commended for bringing Charlie’s world to life, they include Kate Walsh, Dylan McDermott, Mae Whitman, Nina Dobrev, Erin Wilhelmi, Johnny Simmons, Zane Holtz and Joan Cusack.
So that’s the cast, but I would be remiss if I didn’t mention Chbosky’s beautiful script and filmmaking. One of the hardest things to do as a filmmaker is bringing a story to life and make the audience forget they’re even watching a film. There is no doubt about it, he knows these characters and found a way to breathe life into them in a way that connects with the audience. As I sat watching the film, I was reminded of my teenage years and how cool Sam and Patrick would have been to have as friends.
Within 5 minutes of the start of the film, I knew I was in love and that love just kept on growing throughout the film. It is a rare thing for a film to touch me the way The Perks of Being a Wallflower did, but there was something about it that just clicked for me and all I can say is that you must see it, but don’t forget to bring tissues.
Finally, I want to leave you with my favorite quote in the film:
“We accept the love we think we deserve.”
The Perks of Being a Wallflower is now in theaters in New York and Los Angeles and will expand to more theaters next Friday, September 28th. You can watch the trailer for the film here if you haven’t yet.
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