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The Perks of Being a Wallflower 

Engaging, if a bit over-the-top

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Teenage life is melodramatic enough, and for Stephen Chbosky, it’s even more traumatic in The Perks of Being a Wallflower (based on his novel of the same title), a coming-of-age story of a group of suburban high school students. Charlie (Logan Lerman), a freshman struggling with depression, befriends Sam (Emma Watson) and her stepbrother, Patrick (Ezra Miller), both seniors. As the plot unfolds, we learn more about Charlie’s troubled past—along with pretty most of the other characters’ messed up lives. This isn’t your standard teenage angst, but nevertheless, they stumble through one class, one party and one mixtape at a time (it’s set in the '90s, after all). Despite some overwrought plot details, which perhaps get more time in novel format, it makes for engaging, though slightly over-the-top, viewing. It’s even worth watching just for the scene-stealing Ezra Miller (We Need to Talk About Kevin).


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