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Saturday, December 9, 2023

Column: Being a Wallflower

During my weekly date with two of my top bitches, I had the pleasure of watching Perks of Being a Wallflower at The Varsity theatre downtown.

With essentially no expectations as I didn’t really enjoy the novel, I was just ready to watch Emma Watson struggle to deliver an American accent while still remaining the most beautiful person on the planet.

Fast forward an hour into the movie and the first tear forms in the corner of my eye. This develops into a streaming river of salty water that continues to run down my cheeks for the remaining 45 minutes of the movie.

I’m here to officially rescind any negative comments I’ve let escape from my mouth or my fingers on a computer in the past year about The Perks of Being a Wallflower. I’d like to blame the film for this change of heart.

If you have no idea what book I’m referring to, just realize that the growing group of people with trendy infinity symbol tattoos was formed from a mutual obsession with a specific line in Perks: “In this moment, I swear we were infinite.”

Trendy tattoos are a whole other pet peeve I’ll attack some other column. But I’ll just address my confusion for that popular line right now. What does it even mean? I guess it can mean feeling alive or that anything is possible, but did it have to be said like that?

There were so many other things in that novel to think about that adding a confusing line really pissed me off. But that’s just me. It was the same thing for the epilogue of Deathly Hallows.

But back to the movie. I’m going to attempt to make you not hate me right now if you were absolutely moved by the book. Of course there was more than one reason why I paid 10 dollars to see the movie. Sarcasm is my shield from real emotions, people.

I wanted to see a mediocre book about an important issue (being a wallflower) be translated onto screen. And because the author, Stephen Chbosky, directed the film as well, I feel comfortable saying that perhaps he should just write movie scripts.

And I was even moved enough by the film to state that I’m going to purchase the DVD. I’m going to purchase my second DVD ever when it’s released.

The first movie I ever bought was Peter Pan about 10 years ago due to my obsession with Jeremy Sumpter and the story, if you were wondering.

Not only did this film speak to some pretty deep and dark truths that I hold, but it essentially opened up those truths that a unique group of us hold to the rest of the world. (Disclaimer: if you’ve read the book or seen the movie, no, what happened to the main character did not happen to me.)

I walked away from this film shaken to my core. For the rest of the evening, I longed to hug my body pillow and sob into it as I listened to my sad playlist.

This movie doesn’t really depress you unless you can relate to the subject matter, but it leaves you with a different perspective on mental illness or even those who don’t seem to speak up that much in everyday life.

I guess the idea of this column would be movies that affect your life in such ways that you feel changed in almost every way possible. If you want to know what it’s like to live life through wallflower-tinted glasses, please spend an evening or two or three watching this beautiful film.

If you want to discuss the film’s hidden meanings and how it affected you, contact ELIZABETH ORPINA at arts@theaggie.org. Yeah, how weird — a non-sarcastic ending to a column for the first and only time she’s been at the Arts desk.



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