YAB Review: “The Perks of Being a Wallflower”

"The Perks of Being a Wallflower" is a classic novel about coming-of-age and a favorite among many Millennials. So when many teens and twentysomethings found out it was becoming a movie (starring Emma Watson no less!), they were eager to see the adapation. Our YAB member Caroline jumped at the chance to review the film, which she says is slightly different than the book, but is still amazing and lived up to her expectations.

YAB Review: "The Perks of Being a Wallflower"

Perks of Being A WallflowerWhat was the biggest draw for you to see this movie?

I was very excited to see this movie as the novel “The Perks Of Being A Wallflower” is one of my favorite books. I also loved the fact that the author, Stephen Chbosky, was the director of the movie. A lot of movies that were books originally disappoint their viewers because they feel like the movie doesn’t exactly portray what the author is trying to say, but I knew this wouldn’t be the case. Another reason why I couldn’t wait to go see "Perks" was the cast – I am a big fan of Emma Watson and Logan Lerman and was curious to see how they would interpret some of my favorite characters.  

What did you expect going in?

I had high expectations, and figured the movie would be very good. I knew the movie wasn’t going to be better than the book – and I was right, the book is on an entirely different level. However, I still expected it to be funny, heartwarming, and touching. I expected some of the scenes to affect the audience as much as they did in the novel – and that was executed perfectly.

Describe your moviegoing experience

I wasn’t able to see it opening weekend, but maybe two weeks after that in New York. We got there quite early, and the theater was still almost entirely full. It became obvious that most of the crowd had read the book as everyone was gushing about their favorite characters and the changes between the book and the movie once it was over.

Sum it Up

“Perks” follows Charlie, a confused and shy but intelligent freshman in the ‘90s as he falls in love and makes friends for the first time. He writes letters to an anonymous person entitled “dear friend” and tries to understand what life is all about. Charlie, at the beginning, is an outcast, a wallflower. He sees things and understands them, yet he feels lost and alone. He becomes friends with a group of “misfit toys” (as Emma Watson’s character, Sam, describes them) and tries to develop his identity as he undergoes his first high school experiences with them. A heartwarming coming-of-age story, “Perks” touches on subjects such as friendship, bullying, homosexuality, peer pressure, depression, and sexual abuse. The most important part about “Perks,” in my opinion, is that it reminds its audience about an unforgettable teenage feeling – feeling infinite, limitless and, free in the most beautiful way.

How did it compare to the book?

Overall, I was quite satisfied with the movie. I loved both the book and the movie, but I still prefer the book. I was impressed by the cast, the images, the soundtrack, and the jokes. There were some scenes (Charlie’s visit to his family for Christmas, a poem about a suicide note, a scene at Charlie’s English professor’s house) in the book that I really liked and was therefore disappointed not to find again in the movie. I was especially looking forward to seeing the poem in the movie. Yet overall, it was a superb movie.

What did you walk out of the theater thinking?

I walked out of the movie theater with a smile on my face. All I wanted to do was read the book again or talk about the movie. I was very happy with the results, and would have spent another $15 to watch it again. Chbosky, as a writer and director, is brilliant. Both my aunt and friend who had never read the book also highly enjoyed the movie. One thing I noticed: my favorite character in the book was Charlie, but my favorite character in the movie was Patrick (played by Ezra Miller). Walking out of the movie, I was as excited as I had been walking in. It’s just great to finally watch a movie that was one of my favorite books and love it almost as much as the book!

    Caroline

Caroline MarquesCaroline is an American student enjoying her senior year of high school in Geneva, Switzerland. This year will be her fourth year serving on the Youth Advisory Board, which she loves, as it allows her to keep up with a lot of U.S trends and do what she loves the most: write. She spends her time trying to master several languages, traveling, kick-boxing and enjoying music and dance, as well as her two favorites: reading and writing.

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