There are many films about mental health, but most of them don't accurately portray the teenage experience as well as The Perks Of Being A Wallflower. This movie is unique in that it does not glamorize mental health, unlike many television shows and films today. The Perks Of Being A Wallflower portrays mental health realistically and respectfully.
In my opinion, The Perks Of Being A Wallflower is one of the best coming-of-age movies of all time. This film has a great overall message that you're never alone in your struggles, which is something that everyone should know.
MORE ABOUT THE FILM
Written and directed by Stephen Chobsky, the film stars Logan Lerman as Charlie, Emma Watson as Sam, and Ezra Miller as Patrick.
The film is about a high school freshman named Charlie who deals with mental health issues while becoming friends with seniors, Sam and Patrick. Charlie starts out shy and introverted, but by hanging out with Sam and Patrick, he starts to gain more confidence in himself.
As the film goes on, Charlie starts to have brief flashbacks of his past. His new group of friends help him break out of his shell and continue to give him support as he tries to cope with his mental health. They learn to become vulnerable and open around each other. Charlie deals with his first crush, sex, family issues, and friendships. Ultimately, Charlie goes on a journey of growth and acceptance as he begins his journey into adulthood.
THOUGHTS ON THE FILM
I thought this film was very well done. The dialogue was great (especially since the screenplay was written by the author of the novel!) and the acting was incredible, especially Logan Lerman as Charlie. He brings lots of emotion to his character, which helps elevate the movie even more.
This film also does a great job of accurately portraying mental health in teenagers. The main character, Charlie, deals with depression, anxiety, and post traumatic stress disorder (PTSD). Charlie has a lot of flashbacks to his past, and they continue to haunt him throughout the film. I thought this part was well done. By having Charlie make new friends, it shows audiences that they are never alone in their personal struggles.
Personally, I can relate to this film a bit. As someone who struggles with depression, it was nice to see a teenager somewhat similar to me represented on the big screen. Charlie uses books and music to cope with his issues, which is something I also do. Also, Charlie is a "wallflower" and tends to observe the world around him. I tend to do the same thing, and not interact with others as much.
Overall, The Perks Of Being A Wallflower is a great film that brings awareness to mental health and works to end the mental health stigma. It shows that high school sucks sometimes. We all have issues, but with the help of friends, we can survive them, but most importantly, make great memories to remember forever.
Photo Credit: Christian Wiediger