The Perks of Being a Wallflower

The Cockatoo Island Film Festival last Sunday was fantastic – I saw some great films and wandered around a bit of Australian history. But the main attraction was the Australian premier of The Perks of Being a Wallflower, based on the novel of the same name by Stephen Chbosky.

Now, I loved this as a novel, I read it in my final year of high school, so I was a little worried about the transition from film to screen, worried it would just be another boppy high school movie and gloss over the darker themes of the novel in favour of making it a life-affirming teen drama (the trailer doesn’t look promising on this front…). But surprisingly, Stephen Chbosky himself wrote and directed the film, so it was very true to the book and brilliantly filmed and acted. Flashbacks were artistic, drama was high and the writing was superb.

Emma Watson, graduating from the Harry Potter films, was simply fantastic as grungy, gorgeous outsider, Sam, and Logan Lerman was perfect as cute, awkward wallflower, Charlie. The film was artistic, hilarious and, despite the at times bleak subject matter, was surprisingly uplifting. And the soundtrack was amazing! The book was set in the 1990s so the mix of great 80s and 90s hits – The Smiths, David Bowie, and of course, The Rocky Horror Picture Show, were perfect in capturing teenage angst and feeling infinite.

Overall The Perks of Being a Wallflower was a genuine and intelligent adaptation of the novel. I found the ending was a little rushed, but overall this was a great film and I’d highly recommend seeing it when it’s out in cinemas.

“But in that moment, I swear, we were infinite.”

Guest Blogger: Grace, 2nd Year University of Wollongong student, Co-op Member since 2012 and Social Media Intern

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