‘Wallflower’ an Honest View of Teen Angst

PerksOfBeingAWallflower.jpgThe last time Stephen Chbosky wrote and directed a film, it garnered a nomination for Grand Jury Prize at the Sundance Film Festival (1995, The Four Corners of Nowhere). Based on the review by our KIDS FIRST! youth film critic Victoria Burns, age 14, The Perks of Being a Wallflower, which he wrote first as a novel and then a screenplay, has a rich awards future, too. “[T]his movie is amazing and will someday be a classic,” she says. “It is great to see a movie that beautifully shows some of the struggles that real teenagers go through and not sugar-coated.” It is in theaters as of Sept. 21.

The Perks of Being a Wallflower
Reviewed by Victoria Burns
(See her full review on video.)

I just watched The Perks of Being a Wallflower and I can honestly say that it is one of, if the, best movies I have ever seen. It was so pivotal that it almost made me cry,a nd that says a lot because I almost never cry. It is great to see a movie that beautifully shows some of the struggles that real teenagers go through and not sugar-coated.

This movie is very emotional and has great acting. I like the way that the flashback scenes are shown, by alternating from the present to the past and then showing the aftermath after the flashbacks. I had never seen Emma Watson in anything but the Harry Potter series, and she is amazing when she plays Sam; I had never seen her play a character like this. The movie is so good that no words can explain, so that I bought the book directly after I watched the movie.

I also love how, throughout the whole movie, most of the story is told as Charlie (played by Logan Lerman) writes letters anonymously to “A Friend” that doesn’t exist.

This movie is about a severely depressed and lonely boy, Charlie, who’s best friend killed himself before the school year started, so now Charlie has no friends and people think he is weird because he holds in and takes the pain of himself and all of the people he loves. Sometimes it all wells up and he has anxiety attacks. This year he is determined to make friends, and he meets the flamboyant Patrick (played by Ezra Miller) and his stepsister Sam (Emma Watson); they let him in and introduce him to a whole new world filled with fun, sadness and just plain life — plus, he falls in love with Sam along the way.

All of Charlie’s friends are seniors, and he makes a mistake that makes them go away for a while, but then he does something to make them love him even more than before.

I think that everyone should watch this movie. It’s nice how, whenever something bad or slightly inappropriate happens in the flashbacks, the scene hints at what is happening without blatantly showing it.

My favorite quote from the movie is when Charlie’s English teacher, Mr. Anderson (played by Paul Rudd), tells him, “We accept the love we think we deserve.” I think it is so profound and absolutely true.

I would recommend this movie for eighth graders going into high school up to any adult. This movie can prepare teens to not keep emotions and experiences bottled up, because school can be painful and stressful. I give it five out of five stars because this movie is amazing and will someday be a classic.

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