The Perks of Being a Wallflower movie came out today, and we're not sure whether we should watch it or not. We've been doing a little review-reviewing to find out if the movie is worth the time (and possible emotional trauma). Here's what we've found so far:
First, you've got the positive reviews:
"...features a well-chosen cast, an eclectic music mix (David Bowie, New Order, Air Supply) and some moments of uncomfortable honesty as well as dreamlike wonder. And it's anchored by strong performances on two ends of the acting spectrum: from Logan Lerman as Charlie, the high-school freshman of the film's title whose reserved nature can't hide his obvious intelligence and sweetness, and from Ezra Miller in a showy turn as Patrick, the quick-witted and gay senior-class clown who takes Patrick under his wing...'The Perks of Being a Wallflower' may not do anything groundbreaking, but it tells a familiar story in small, thoughtful ways." —HuffPost
"As a such huge fan of the book, I have to say that I was not disappointed at all by this adaption. Everything just feels very lovingly filmed and the way that it should be, and I also just feel like it's perfectly cast...It strikes this perfect tone between light and heavy."—Popsugar
Then you've got your ambivalent reviews:
"That’s the gist of The Perks of Being a Wallflower. It’s an incredibly melodramatic movie that attempts to cover every possible issue a teen could ever have, while simultaneously trying to spit out as many quotable lines as possible... It isn’t fair to cram them all into one movie and lightly breeze over so many of them. By the time the movie climaxes, I’m so overwhelmed by how much is happening, and somehow not happening, that I didn’t feel the full impact of the surprising confession...On the other hand...I thought the actors—Emma Watson, Logan Lerman, Ezra Miller, Mae Whitman—did a terrific job navigating the story and jumping from one big moment to the next... I bought each of their stories, hook, line and sinker." —Crushable.
"There's a lot to like about The Perks of Being a Wallflower, but Chbosky has some growing up to do before he steps behind the camera again."—TelevisionWithoutPity
"All the energy and likability can't sustain the movie's second half, which tries to present wish-fulfillment fantasies as realistic developments...That's the problem with The Perks of Being a Wallflower: It's populated by characters who are just too good to be plausible." —NPR
"Chbosky never finds the pulse of life in his characters to allow these moments to resonate; everything they say or do is in service to clunky affirmations, the paper-thin plot, or, yes, that certain, odious brand of liberalism that favors and tends toward victimization...It's this type of philosophy that curdles what might have been just a frivolous trifle into a risible, somewhat revolting piece of pop martyrdom, made for and isolated to the damaged middle class. "—SlantMagazine
The Consensus is...
...There is none. It sounds kinda like Perks is your average teen movie. But the one positive thing that everyone does seem to agree on? Logan Lerman, Emma Watson, and Ezra Miller did an amazing job acting...and that might be enough to convince us.
Will you be seeing Perks of Being a Wallflower this weekend?