"The Perks of Being A Wallflower" (2012)
Directed By: Stephen Chbosky
Written By: Stephen Chbosky
In Theatres: Sep 21st, 2012
Runtime: 103 minutes
Studio: Lionsgate Films
Here we have a fantastic coming of age story revolved around the friendships between a wonderful bunch of characters. You will laugh with them, cry with them, but most of all, have fun with them.
Socially awkward teen Charlie (Logan Lerman) is a wallflower, always watching life from the side lines, until two charismatic students become his mentors. Free-spirited Sam (Emma Watson) and her stepbrother Patrick (Ezra Miller) help Charlie discover the joys of friendship, first love, music and more, while a teacher sparks Charlie's dreams of becoming a writer. However, as his new friends prepare to leave for college, Charlie's inner sadness threatens to shatter his newfound confidence.
This film and the book mean a lot to me. Mostly because reading the book I remember thinking “this character, he thinks the same way I do; he has thoughts that I have had.” Watching the film I feel a warmth and attachment I don’t feel with many films. This film will also always be special to me because it’s how I bonded with my college roommate the first day I met her, and we are now very close.
The story mainly centres around Charlie, Sam and Patrick. Honestly, the film has done so much justice to the book. They are both so well done in their own right. After all, both are written and directed by Stephen Chbosky – this is something I thought was unusual but I'm glad this was what happened. Something I found very interesting was that John Hughes had originally bought the film rights with the intention to write and direct the film. He had hoped to make the film more of a dark comedy. However, his sudden death stalled the project as he had not completed the script before his passing. We could have had a very different film on our hands! In the director's commentary on the DVD of the film, Stephen Chbosky mentions that "Dead Poets Society" (1989) and "The Breakfast Club" (1985) were two of his favourite films and both had an influence on this film.
The casting was spot on. Logan Lerman does a brilliant job of portraying the diffident and kind Charlie. He is a beautiful character, who to me, really feels like a real person. He brought him to life in a beautiful way. It must have been tough for Emma Watson to distance herself from Harry Potter’s Hermione Granger, but she has over the years grown into such a beautiful and talented actress. I really liked the way she portrayed Sam. Ezra Miller was a wonderful choice for Patrick. I couldn’t imagine a better actor to bring him to life. The three of them fit so well together.
The novel was first published in 1999, however the action is set during the years 1991-1992. Though no exact year is specified throughout the film, it is implied to be set during the 1990s through the inclusion of such details as no characters using mobile phones or Internet, as well as the use of records and cassette tapes.
I always feel so much better about life after watching this film and I think that’s a good enough reason to recommend everyone see it.