Saturday, February 16, 2013

The Perks of Being a Wallflower

The Perks of Being a Wallflower (2012)

Directed by Stephen Chbosky

Screenplay by  Stephen Chbosky

Based on his book

Currently #214 of the Top 250 Films of All Time on IMDb (as of this posting)

Stars: Logan Lerman, Emma Watson, Ezra Miller, Johnny Simmons, Nina Dobrev, Adam Hagenbuch, Mae Whitman, Erin Wilhelmi, Kate Walsh, Dylan McDermott, Paul Rudd, Melanie Lynskey and Joan Cusack

The first time hearing about The Perks of Being a Wallflower was an advertisement for the book on Mtv. It was during my senior year in high school and I wanted to read the book, but I never got the chance. The movie adaptation of the book was highly anticipated for me, but the movie was in limited release and never opened wide. Being bummed about that, waiting for the movie to come out on DVD was the only option. This movie could be the Generation XY version of The Breakfast Club.

Taking place in Pittsburgh circa 1991, Charlie (Lerman) is about to enter his freshman year of high school. It is a scary time for any teenager, but Charlie is a special case. He is the wallflower in the title, but he has skeletons in his closet about the tragic death of his aunt, Helen (Lynskey) years prior. He is haunted by that. Charlie realizes that the people that he knew from middle school would ignore him.

As his teacher, Mr. Anderson tells him, "if you a friend on the first day, you're okay." His luck is about to change when he meets a couple of seniors, Patrick and Sam (Miller, Watson) at a football game. Patrick is an openly gay student that is teased mercilessly for being himself. He didn't let that stop. Patrick step-sister, Sam is the object of Charlie's affections, but he is too shy to tell her his feelings. She is damaged herself with unsavory things happened to her. The trio become like the band of misfits. They are comfortable not conforming to social norms of high school life.

This movie made me revisit my high school expierences. Most were not pleasant, but it made me focus on the friends that I had when I was going through my inner demons. If it was not for those people that were misfits, outcasts like myself, I would not be here. They taught me that I am unqiue. Embrace and love myself. That I was special. Lifesavers all of them. Through all the times that I was constantly questioned about my sexuality, being called Brenda, being bullied, I went through some dark times especially my freshmen year like Charlie.

Every kid should see this movie that let them know that they are not freaks. The people messing with you are the freaks, because they cannot appreciated that you are being yourself and not being an high school archetype. This movie made me feel the same way like I did when I saw Dazed and Confused. It brings back those carefree days being young and having people that will stick by you through thick and thin.

You can probably tell by now that I love this movie. The actors were sensational in there roles. I might say that I confused about when the setting took place, because I thought it was modern day. When I realized it was taking place 1991/1992, the movie made more sense.

My Rating


  1. Good review Branden. One of my favorites from last year, and one of the main reasons why I missed high school so damn much. I still do to this day, but back at that time: I was really nostalgic.

  2. I felt like that, too. High school was okay for me. I was fucked up about what happened in middle school. It was awful time for it. I was in a bad place when I entered high school. There are some days that I wish I could go back and take advantage of it more.