The Perks of Being a Wallflower is a coming-of-age drama film written and directed by Stephen Chbosky, based on the best-selling novel of the same name he wrote in 1999.
The events of this compelling coming-of-age movie are unfolding in the early 1990s in the suburbs of Pittsburgh. The story tells us about Charlie (played by Logan Lerman), an alienated high-school freshman who considers himself an outsider and has serious problems with social adaptation. He then finds himself in the company of two smart and sympathetic older kids, including the homosexual Patrick (Ezra Miller) and his half-sister Sam (Emma Watson). Together, they form an artsy and non-conformist crowd as well as Charlie’s rescue from depression and deep insecurity.
Any coming-of-age movie that describes the troubles of growing up should be approached with caution. Attempts to show the life of high school students can result in tiresome cliches, especially if they are made by either people who forgot what it is to be a teenager or those who are terrified of the changes that are happening with their own children.
Like any other movie about teenagers, The Perks of Being a Wallflower is often awkward or even embarrassing. Despite the non-perfect script and the lack of system, Chbosky's work has something that makes thirty-year-olds relate to the teens on the screen. The soundtrack matches the film excellently as well.
And most importantly, Chbosky had a great cast. Ezra Miller plays his role extremely carefully, and Emma Watson proves that life beyond the Harry Potter universe exists. As for the "quiet" Charlie, Logan Lerman is surprisingly sweet. Charlie tells his story through letters to an imaginary friend, and we see how the world around him is revealed in all its incomprehensible, terrifying, and delightful complexity. Even when something melodramatic happens with him, you still believe in his emotions and feelings.
Throughout the movie, Charlie experiences an emotional rollercoaster of growing up, but at the same time, learns that it is completely OK to be himself and that he has the best friends he could wish for.
This story will keep you laughing, crying, and watching it on and on. The main character shows that one can actually enjoy high school if there are right friends by your side. And he also proves that growing up is quite bearable, even if it seems scary at first glance.