4.28 – THE PERKS OF BEING A WALLFLOWER (2012) & Hopeful Realism

It’s the return of Sam! And we’re picking up where we left off, with a continuation of our mini-season of high school movies. This week, in a change (as explained in the episode) to the film we had been going to feature, it’s Emma Watson’s 2012 (post-HP) breakout role. After some reviews, we talk about how, refreshingly, this is a teen romance that’s actually not about its central relationship; the experiences of its female lead, both on-screen and off-; and filmed depictions of little griefs and in-spite-of-it-all positivity (something that we definitely need at the moment!).

Next Time
The penultimate movie in our ‘high school’ mini season is the 2016 musical comedy-drama SING STREET.

Recent Media
HUNTERS (2020): David Weil, Logan Lernan, Jerrika Hinton
OCEAN’S ELEVEN/TWELVE/THIRTEEN (2001-07): Steven Soderbergh, George Clooney, Brad Pitt
NEW AMSTERDAM (2018–): Eric Manheimer, David Schulner, Ryan Eggold
KNIVES OUT (2019): Rian Johnson, Daniel Craig, Chris Evans
SLEUTH (1972): Joseph L. Mankiewicz, Anthony Schaffer, Laurence Olivier

Recommendations
MY WEEK WITH MARILYN (2011): Simon Curtis, Colin Clark, Michelle Williams
THE TRIBE (2014): Myroslav Slaboshpytskiy, Grygoriy Fesenko, Yana Novikova
TRAINWRECK (2015): Judd Apatow, Amy Schumer, Bill Hader
ATONEMENT (2007): Joe Wright, James McAvoy, Keira Knightley

Footnotes
Firstly, in our now-regular mention of Brecht, here’s an interesting piece on alienation on stage and screen: https://beautifultrouble.org/theory/alienation-effect. Further to this, here are a few recommendations for other films about alienation: https://www.tasteofcinema.com/2018/10-great-movies-that-explore-human-alienation.
This is a good resource for thinking about on-screen outsiders: https://www.universalteacher.org.uk/gcsemedia/filmout.htm. If, like Sam (the real-life one, not the character), you haven’t seen THE ROCKY HORROR PICTURE SHOW, then this is a good place to start: https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/TheRockyHorrorPictureShowcultfollowing. Finally, for more on some of the debates surrounding Emma Watson, the proverbial internet rabbit hole starts here: https://www.kqed.org/pop/68229/why-does-emma-watsons-feminism-irritate-so-many-people (I came up with this article because I refused to Google ‘Emma Watson + sexualisation’; if you want to, though, be my guest! [And yes, that is an Emma Watson reference. Oooh: how clever…])