By Chris Nashawaty
Updated February 08, 2013 at 05:00 AM EST
John Bramley

High school is tough. And capturing the awkwardness of those adolescent years on film is even tougher. That’s why writer-director Stephen Chbosky’s The Perks of Being a Wallflower (2012, 1 hr., 43 mins., PG-13) is such a miracle. Set in 1991 Pittsburgh, Perks is the formula-flouting story of a freshman loner (Logan Lerman) who emerges from his cerebral cocoon with help from an older clique of alterna-kids (including Emma Watson and the scene-stealing Ezra Miller). Every first kiss, first dance, and first heartbreak feels true. And the Smiths-and-Bowie soundtrack doesn’t hurt either. Chbosky’s nostalgic commentary on the EXTRAS has the same diary-entry honesty. A

The Perks of Being a Wallflower

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