You don’t have to be a wallflower to enjoy “The Perks of Being a Wallflower,” http://www.imdb.com/title/tt1659337/ but it might help. This emotionally honest movie will strike a chord with all audiences. Everybody’s been young once and felt as if they were a misfit toy. The openness of the characters in speaking of their problems is not something that older generations may have enjoyed in their youth, but everyone’s seen enough after school specials to know that the days of keeping it bottled up inside are gone. Out in the open, things don’t look quite as bad when you find out that you’re not the only one who thinks he’s weird.
The movie follows Charlie, played by Logan Lerman, through his freshmen year of high school. He eats lunch alone and counts the days until he can graduate. Too bad he’s only just begun. A couple of seniors, Sam and Patrick, played by Emma Watson and Ezra Miller, take Charlie under their wings. They introduce him to parties, Rocky Horror Picture Show, and drugs. It is the early nineties after all. To Charlie, Sam and Patrick, who are step sister and brother, seem to have it all figured out. He has found friends in high school. He can’t believe it! What he learns is the thing we all need to learn. It seems we also have to learn it over and over again. That’s what makes this film resonate with audiences. It reminds you of what the daily grind makes you forget, that life is precious and wonderful. “Perks” will make you remember.
The movie is based on the eponymous book, by Stephen Chbosky who also wrote the screenplay and directed the movie. Wow! So you know that the movie is going to be true to the book even if it has to cut some of the details to fit the film format and time constraints. This is good news for fans of the book. When you love a book, you’re both excited and apprehensive when you hear that someone’s making a film based on it. It can be jarring to see something you loved changed to fit Hollywood’s parameters. In this case that effect should be minimal.
Soundtracks are an integral part of movies. The music in the mix tapes in “The Perks of Being a Wallflower” is like another character in this film. Who didn’t make a mix tape in the early nineties? You almost had to if you loved music. I immediately had to check out the soundtrack and it has a track of Charlie reading his last letter. Pretty Cool! It will remind you that you are infinite.
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