The Perks Of Being A Wallflower

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2012

Directed by Stephen Chbosky – Written by Stephen Chbosky

Starring: Logan Lerman, Emma Watson and Ezra Miller

The Perks of Being a Wallflower is latest in the ‘coming of age’ films.  It shows the life of a freshman high school kid, Charlie, played by Logan Lerman from 3:10 to Yuma (2007). Charlie has a troubled childhood to say the least and it has affected him rather badly, constantly trying to keep out the worst memories of sad/disturbing times in his past. We follow this character through his first day of high school. You can’t help but feel sympathy for him, as we have all been there before. Starting in a new school, not knowing where you really fit in and everyone making their judgments of you before you’ve stepped through the doors of the school. Charlie does eventually gain some courage and finds his place within possibly the strangest group of people you could meet. He makes great friendships with two seniors, Sam – played by Emma Watson, My Week With Marilyn (2011), and Patrick – played by Ezra Miller, We Need To Talk About Kevin (2011). They have a lot of fun/interesting/happy times together and our man Charlie ends up falling for the older woman, Sam.

All three performances throughout the film were brilliant, an outstanding cast. Instead of generalising an over-all performance from everyone I am going to talk about each actor separately because I think they deserve it for their performances and partly because I want to. So…

Lets start with our main man Logan Lerman a.k.a. Charlie. He has had a fairly successful career so far staring in The Number 23 (2007) along side Jim Carrey and Percy Jackson & The Lightning Thief (2010). The role of Charlie was a very new role for Lerman and he portrayed it perfectly. You really get to know his character, you feel sorry for him when things aren’t going to plan for him and you feel happy for him when everything fits into its place. The emotions that he has to express through the film are from one extreme to another, that is not an easy thing to do, yet he makes it seem like a piece of cake. Because we are seeing him through his first year at high school and seeing everything that he experiences you get the feeling that you can connect with this boy and share his moments with him. Well I did, anyway. Lerman holds the pressure of being a main character easily with such an amazing performance, just perfect.

Next is the beautiful, Emma Watson a.k.a. Sam. Her performance in this film is a long way from Hermione Granger in Harry Potter (2001 – 2011). Although she was great as Hermione, she was fantastic as Sam. Yeah her American accent wasn’t the best but you can look past that. Her role is much more mature and elegant in comparison. Watson has shown that she will have a bright future beyond the Potter franchise. Her portrayal of this basically insane young woman that doesn’t have a care in the world what anybody thinks of her other than Charlie is brilliant. I hope that in her next films to be released in 2013, she will, again shine for us.

And now for… Ezra Miller a.k.a. Patrick. Miller like Watson is a long way from his previous role too. He last played as an extremely troubled devil child in We Need To Talk About Kevin (2011). This film has definitely brought him out of that shell. He is the gay best friend, literally. His character is a gay lunatic, which funnily enough, he plays fabulously. We see his character go through many emotions too, from his overly excited-ness and enthusiasm towards everything to his darkest moments where he is strongly abused by a few school kids. He brings the element of comedy to the film with his camp persona that can be only described as hilarious. But he also brings a sense of comfort for the other two characters, Charlie and Sam, bringing them all together and making everyone laugh. Miller has proven that he is an extremely versatile actor, adapting to his roles with a good spirit and giving a, dare I say it again, FABULOUS performance.

Being Steven Chbosky’s debut film, he didn’t do a bad job. In fact, I don’t think anybody could do a better job first time round. I think it is so, I can’t put it any other word than, AWESOME, because it was his book to start with and to adapt it into a screenplay himself was possibly the best idea the producers had from the start. The Perks of Being a Wallflower is absolutely beautiful.

10/10

– Nathaniel Asher

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