Before we get into this review on the movie taking teenage girls by storm, let’s take a moment of silence for John Hughes – the real mastermind behind the “they weren’t supposed to fall in love but they did” moments.
What you are about to read contains spoilers; please proceed with caution.
The movie “To All the Boys I’ve Loved Before” follows a teenage girl through the trauma of having her five secret love letters mailed to the boys who were never supposed to receive them. Lara Jean, played by Lana Condor, battles life as a teenager who has an incredibly close relationship with her older sister, Margot and younger sister, Kitty.
Just as any clichéd movie would have it, one of the recipients of the love letters is Josh, Margot’s ex-boyfriend and the adorable boy-next-door Lara Jean grew up with.
Following predictions to a “T,” another one of the boys is Peter, the boyfriend/ex-boyfriend of Lara Jean’s frenemy, Genevieve. As luck would have it, Peter and Gen break up right before the letters are released and Peter confronts Lara Jean about the letters.
To avoid facing feelings toward her sister’s ex, Lara Jean spontaneously kisses bad boy Peter, (of course on the track in gym class, ugh high school) and he kisses her back. The two make a pact that they will fake a relationship because Laura Jean is caught up in her lie and Peter wants to make his ex jealous (the added popularity and a seat at the “cool” lunch table probably helps Lara Jean too).
Hmmm, so two high schoolers pretend to date and continually get more comfortable around each other… what could happen next? Slowly it becomes less like they’re faking and feels more real.
Yes, you were right, they fall for each other. Plot twist? Not even a little.
Aside from the clichés and cringy moments, “To All the Boys I’ve Loved Before” is a cute movie. The story remains faithful to The New York Times best-seller it’s based on, and is everything you’d expect based on its “teenage take on life” title.
There’s something endearing about watching a “coming-of-age” movie after you’ve “come of age.” It’s hard not to look back and chuckle at the little things that seem so stupid now when at one point, prom dates and lunch table popularity consumed our lives.
No, this movie isn’t going to win an Oscar, and the rumored sequel will most likely not feature Ryan Gosling, but if you’re in the market for a coming-of-age, mostly unrealistic love story, add “To All the Boys I’ve Loved Before” to your Netflix queue.