I don't watch "coming of age" movies often, but this one has a certain sensibility and charm that I couldn't escape. I think maybe it might just be the really likable cast with favourite actors like Emma Watson and Ezra Miller. Or the feeling that everyone should have friends like they are in this movie.
The film is based on an acclaimed book and plays in midwest America in the 90s. Charlie is in a new high school in freshmen year who tries to find friends after coming out of a tumultuous year. His ego fragile and at times depressed, he involves the viewer immediately by writing letters to a friend he has lost to suicide. At first things are not easy, but he finds understanding and camaraderie with step-siblings Sam and Patrick and their eclectic group. They guide him through his first year in high school, including quite a few other firsts: love, independence, mind-altering substances, teen drama.
What I really liked about this film was the sincerity and honesty that you could feel throughout. When Charlie writes his letters, they capture his (and your) thoughts without avoiding the uncomfortable aspects and it brings a nice reflective side to the events. Even though it takes some time to get the whole story pieced together, your involvement never wanders off. And although not all of the (more sensitive) subjects touched get explored in depth, it feels like they don't necessarily need to be as this movie is not a phsycho analysis but a picture of the wild ride of teenage years, which most of us can relate to.
(Image courtesy of JBHiFi).
Title: The Perks of Being a Wallflowers [DVD]
Screenplay: Stephen Chbosky
Director: Stephen Chbosky
Publisher: Roadshow Entertainment
Rating: M - Suitable for mature audiences 16 years and over. Note: Offensive language, sexual reference and drug use.
- Ina, Mt. Albert Library