Movie Review: The Perks of Being a Wallflower (2012 film)

perks of being a wallflower movie poster

Rated: P13
Genre: Romance, comedy, drama
Running Time: 103 minutes
Director: Stephen Chbosky
Cast: Logan Lerman, Emma Watson, Ezra Miller, Nina Dobrev, Mae Whitman

Synopsis: “Based on the novel written by Stephen Chbosky, ‘The Perks Of Being A Wallflower’ tells the story of 15-year-old Charlie (Logan Lerman), an endearing and naive outsider, who is struggling to cope with feelings of his first love for his senior, Sam (Emma Watson), the suicide of his best friend Michael, his sexual confusion with Sam’s step-brother, Patrick (Ezra Miller) and his own mental illness while struggling to find a group of people with whom he belongs” (GSC Movies).

Verdict: This is not a typical romance comedy drama about high school misfits. It’s a fun-to-watch, heartfelt film about adolescence, friendship, introversion, sexuality and young love relationships, with a lesson on how we shouldn’t not participate in life. Logan Lerman bounces back from his miserable performance in Percy Jackson (2010) to put up a very convincing one here as the awkward introvert with a dark past. To me, personally, The Perks of Being a Wallflower is also a testimonial to the awesomeness of pre-digital era, when school kids had a different kind of fun, when mainstream music was better, when favourite tunes were recorded into mixtapes, when truth or dare was played at parties, and when life’s dramas weren’t announced online. It’s quite nostalgic even though I didn’t exactly live through that in my younger days (not sure if that makes any sense to you).

Second opinion: “Quite a good film but Emma Watson’s acting here is the weakest amongst the three main actors; she’s an eye candy nonetheless” (a few friends).

Malaysian censorship: Make-out scenes and some dialogues (instead of muting) chopped. Not many though.

Rating: 4.5 / 5


Favourite quote: Why do I and everyone I love pick people who treat us like we’re nothing?” asks Sam and Charlie answers, “We accept the love we think we deserve.”

Two possible plot holes: David Bowie’s song, Heroes, becomes sort of the theme of the three friends (main characters) in the story. They first hear it when they are going through a tunnel but somehow they have no idea what the title is or who the singer is until the end of the film. The characters know a lot of great music and artists so how is it possible for them to not know about the great Sir David Bowie and his song that was released at least a decade before the year in the movie? The other thing is the truth or dare game scene which involves Patrick daring Charlie to kiss the prettiest girl in the room. Charlie kisses Sam instead of his girlfriend which causes their friendship to fall apart. Now why would the cheeky and playful Patrick give Charlie such a simple dare? Unless his intention is bad, but that isn’t indicated in the movie.


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