Hi, everyone! I’m Dr. Liz and I am here today to talk to you about a movie I recently got to see a preview screening of, which is To All the Boys I Love: P.S. I Still Love You, a Netflix original movie. I got to see it about a week before it was released on Netflix here in Portland where they do a lot of filming for the movie and I wanted to talk about the parts about this movie that I really loved and the parts about this movie that I was a little bit disappointed by.
So for anyone who doesn’t know me, I freaking love love movies. I love a movie about love. I love a rom-com. I love a drama. I love a dramady. Like if it is about love and it’s going to make my heart swell and sing, I am here for it.
To All the Boys I’ve Loved Before was one of my favorite Netflix movies in the last couple of years. It was a really tightly shot film. It was beautiful in the way that it used the different scenes and the different character developments to create a really compelling story about what love is and how people find love and feel love.
So I was excited to see the sequel because first of all, the talents, the performers, are really, really excellent. The lead actor or lead actress put in a phenomenal showing in the first movie and I had a lot of faith in her ability to carry a second one. The romantic leads were all great as well, the father. It was just a really nicely done movie.
And the second one had a lot of elements from the first that I really enjoyed. The acting performances were still very strong, very well done, a lot of interesting components about the cultural differences between Lara Jean and her dad. Lara Jean’s dad is white. Her dad – or her mom was Korean but had died. And her dad keeps trying to keep the culture alive so there’s a bit of a way that the three sisters Lara Jean, Kitty, and of course I’m spacing on the oldest sister’s name, it will come to me, all interact with the way that their dad tries to preserve their culture through cooking them food that he doesn’t do very well or having them wear traditional outfits.
This movie overall, spoilers ahead, if you don’t want spoilers for this very important Netflix movie, I would stop watching now. This movie is essentially a classic love triangle movie. And I think that part of why I didn’t enjoy it as much is that love triangles in my opinion are a very lazy device for movies, particularly in a world where polyamory exists.
In this movie, the love triangle is one between her romantic interest from the previous movie and the person whose letter we don’t actually see delivered or received in the first movie, who just happens to end up at the same internship that she is doing during senior year for her community service hours.
What’s interesting about the movie is that the new interloper of sorts, the letter receiver, is someone who in a lot of ways is better suited to Lara Jean. They have more similar interests. They think about things more similarly. However, she seems to have a better connection in a lot of ways with the person she has been dating.
I think that this love triangle was an interesting idea and I think that it was a lazy way to explore Lara Jean’s own assumptions about what relationships are or are supposed to be or how she finds herself as a person in relationship and figures out what that looks like for her. I think that there are other ways they could have explored those same themes that wouldn’t have been about this, is it this person or this person? Do I actually really like my boyfriend or do I like someone else more?
I think that it reinforces this idea that if you are attracted to someone else or like someone else, it must mean that there’s a problem in your relationship rather than just showing that there are problems in the relationship that have nothing to do with this other third person.
Some things that I really did enjoy about the movie were the ways the characters eventually communicated, when they finally did get around the communicating, they did a pretty good job of it. Noah Centineo’s character does a good job overall of trying to communicate openly with Lara Jean even when she struggles too.
I also really enjoyed that there was a lot of spot line about the competition between women or friends and like how to heal those wounds. And it was really interesting to see how they handled that conflict and brought some new resolution to it over the course of this movie.
My favorite character in the movie was Stormy, the glorious older woman at the retirement home where Lara Jean volunteers, who really helps her come into her own power and explore who she is.
Overall, I would say that this movie was good. But I don’t think that it fulfilled the promise and the level of expectation that I had based on the first movie. So I would recommend seeing it and I would say that it is not as good as the first one.
So no like necessary judgment there, just like not as solid of a movie. It’s still a better movie than a lot of like the original love movies that come out in a lot of ways. I think I just have higher expectations for it.
And movie people out there, polyamory exists! Polyamory exists. Liking two people doesn’t mean you don’t actually like the first one or that you need to break up with one of them especially in high school. Shouldn’t we encourage people to date multiple folks to see what it is that they like?
Being in one relationship for all of your teenage years sounds like a terrible idea and a really bad way to learn about yourself, to learn about dating, to learn about who you are when you date, and what kind of people you like to date. I just wish there are more movies that didn’t rely on is it A or B as like their key source of dramatic tension.
Anyway, I hope you all watch it. If you have seen it, give me your thoughts. If you loved it, awesome. If you hated it, I hear you. Again, I didn’t hate it. I didn’t love love it. I thought it was good. I didn’t think it was great. But I love to hear what you think. So please leave a comment down below and let me know your thoughts. And I’ll be back with you again soon. Bye!