Review: The Perks of Being a Wallflower

theperksofbeingawallflower-poster-jpg_220830I wasn’t very interested when I first saw the trailer for The Perks of Being a Wallflower, but Netflix suggested I should watch it (4-star worthy) and they really know me better than myself.

Though one thing I do have to say about the trailer was that it introduced me to Imagine Dragons, one of my favorite new bands. After rewatching the trailer, I noticed they pulled out “BE AGGRESSIVE! PASSIVE AGGRESSIVE!” scene.

I initially thought the story was about a coming of age story about a boy starting high school with no friends, but it’s so much more than that. The 3 main characters (Logan Lerman as Charlie, Emma Watson as Sam, and Ezra Miller as Patrick) gave outstanding performances.

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Right off the bat, you get a vibe there’s something not quite right with Charlie. He seems like a kid dealing with depression. You have a feeling the family understands Charlie isn’t quite alright, but doesn’t really know everything that is going on. Whatever it is, it’s preventing Charlie from making friends.

Charlie meets up with Patrick and Sam shortly after starting high school and he feels he could be friends with them. One time at a party after getting stoned, he divulges that his best (only?) friend had shot himself. Not too much details here, and it felt a bit forced just to set the mood, but you learn this was really curve ball for the much bigger reveal at the end of the story.

Update: So after watching the deleted scenes, his best friend does show up in a memory sequence. It doesn’t really explain why he killed himself, but does explain the cafeteria scene where he doesn’t sit next to a girl he pointed out. Apparently that girl was his best friend’s girlfriend.

The story is told through a series of letters he writes to an anonymous person he “overheard” from some other students. I understand that the recipient of the letters isn’t really important, but it’s another aspect of the story that felt a bit forced. Who is the recipient? Was there a recipient? Given that that recipient never plays an active role in the story, would the story have been any different if Charlie wrote in a journal? If there was a really a recipient, was there really a reason he replied to offer help.

Update: I was reading the book’s plot on Wikipedia and was wondering why they didn’t include the part where Charlie’s sister got pregnant and confides in Charlie. Charlie sticks by her while she got an abortion. The scene was actually shot, but removed from the final cut. You can watch it in the deleted scenes.
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Very melodramatic, just the way I like it.

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