To All the Boys I've Loved Before

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This week’s review follows a different format called “Poops and Praises” where I just list what I liked (praises) and what I didn’t like (poops). However, before I get into that:

And now for the poops and praises:

The main character is an Asian female, a much needed drop of non-white representation in American media. A true Asian (or decent person) would not wear their dirty slippers onto the bed, let alone put them under the comforter (offensive scene begins at timestamp 5:35).
Noah Centineo has a convincing performance as Peter Kavinsky. He embodies the role of high school jock well (maybe a little too well). The number of times someone addresses Peter Kavinsky by his full name is distractingly high.
Lana Condor brings a bit of charm to the lead role of Lara Jean that makes her a likeable heroine, and we root for her the whole way. Inconsistent levels in Condor’s acting weaken the emotional payoff of some scenes.
Lara Jean’s younger sister and father are good characters that add comic relief but are also capable of providing emotional nuance. Other side characters in the cast are poorly developed or one-dimensional.
There is actual chemistry between Condor and Centineo that makes the relationship believable. The circumstances in which they get into a relationship are simply absurd.
The film encourages teenagers to open up and talk about emotionally complex topics like love, loss, and family. The film also showcases a practically unchaperoned, school-sponsored ski trip to a beautiful mountain resort (to its credit, it does seem self-aware of the ridiculous nature of this trip).
A teenage girl is able to 🎵 find love in a hopeless place 🎵. A teenage girl’s first relationship is born out of fake one, which is not a healthy portrayal of love.

Whether you’re into the genre, or just like to laugh together at its cringier, cheesier moments, “To All the Boys I’ve Loved Before” is an adorable coming-of-age flick that’s fun and easy to watch while still offering some emotional depth so that we don’t feel like we wasted our time by the end.

★ ★ ★

Director: Susan Johnson

Starring: Lana Condor, Noah Centineo

2018, TV-14, 99 min

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