Sunday, September 30, 2012

The Spotlight on the Wallflower

Watson, Lerman and Miller
The Perks of Being a Wallflower @ Collider

Finally got to catch The Perks of Being A Wallflower today with my sister and I must say this is one of the few movies that lived up to the hype. I've had my fair share of movies and stories that are about teenagers, but those I've seen and read before pretty much pale in comparison to what Stephen Chbosky has done. Both as a book and a film, Perks manages to strike a chord in a lot of people and I think that's the reason why it's such a success. 

I still wonder though how a book such as Perks that has the easy-to-bake recipe (complex yet simple enough characters, the musical choices that linger through the novel, teenage joys and troubles, etc.) took some 11-12 years before making it to the big screen, but  2012 is a great year to have Perks. When kids these days, including those of us who are a bit older, are into these old timey songs, vibes and moods, Perks is definitely a satisfying piece of literature and film (my book review). 

The film did the book much justice. I guess you could credit this to the fact that Chbosky is responsible for the screenplay and directing, allowing him to preserve and add just about enough to his material. You could still recount parts from the book on the film and actually match what you've visualize while reading the book to the ones you see on the movie. Couldn't picture a better Charlie than Logan Lerman. This film has made a star out of Lerman. Still couldn't put the finger on it as to who Lerman reminds me of, but I'm sure this one will go very, very far. He's easily likable, very charming and handsome and he effortlessly manages to balance the brooding, tortured side of Charlie with the character's desire to belong and understand himself. Ezra Miller is another breakout star. I know he's scared audiences with his performance in We Have To Talk About Kevin, and here, he makes Patrick, extra funny, realistic and exciting. Watching him makes you want to wish you had a real life Patrick as a friend. Miller's look, his talent and the movies he's done so far will put him high up on the A-Lists, possibly sooner than we think. Emma Watson is extra beautiful. Whenever she appears on screen, I couldn't help but see her rising up to the ranks of Anne Hathaway with a face like hers. Her Sam is expected: cool, quirky, funny, mature and always so understanding of everybody. But the story however made bigger stars out of Lerman and Miller.

It was an overall pleasing experience. You'd expect Perks to turn out this good. A chunk of the movie somehow took me back to a familiar place, somewhere in the not-so-distant past and it tugged at the heart as I watched (and while reading) Perks. Surely others could attest to this too. There are plenty of moments that will haunt and will continue on a loop in your head and while not everyone could relate to the same exact issues the characters go through, there is always a part of Charlie, Patrick or Sam in all of us that were put on film and on pages thanks to Perks. Grab the book, watch the film and it'll teach you a lesson about youth, life and the moments you should never take for granted. 


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