The Perks of Being a Wallflower
often have I heard of people brushing off The Perks of Being a
Wallflower as another routine entry into the teen drama genre; it’s
anything but that. Director and screenwriter Stephen Chbosky (who also
wrote the 1999 book the film is based on) has created an exceptionally
smart and heartfelt film that deals with isolation, acceptance and
relationships on a disturbingly real level.
Charlie (Logan Lerman) is a loner and he knows it. Having to deal with
both the deaths of his role-model aunt and his best friend (who
committed suicide) he finds it hard to fit in during freshman year of
high school, but can you really blame him after what he’s been through?
Charlie wants to make friends but he can’t because of his shy nature
until eventually he befriends to senior students, Sam (Emma Watson) and
her stepbrother Patrick (Ezra Miller).
and Patrick eventually bring Patrick out of his shell, which is such a
satisfying thing to witness as a viewer because it’s almost
heartbreaking to see Charlie’s miserable eyes stare down at the ground
in sadness wherever he goes. All credit must go to Lerman for his
terrific portrayal as Charlie, who has the ability to make you
sympathise with him one minute and question him the next. Charlie is
such a complicated character to dissect and warm to which Lerman has
nailed on the head with his performance.
Watson and Miller deserve praise for their performances as Sam and
Patrick, who become the perfect role models for Charlie as he breaks out
of his shell. Other commendable performances include Paul Rudd as
Charlie’s English teacher.
The Perks of A Wallflower is a deep and touching film that doesn’t
truly reveal itself until the final moments with a twist that is subtle
yet shocking. It’s contemporary filmmaking at its finest with terrific
cinematography and performances from its three young leads who all
deliver their best work to date.