A dash of romance, a sprinkle of innocence and a bucket full of high school cringe,
“To All The Boys: PS I Still Love You” is a naive, oversimplified rom-com that doesn’t forget about how dramatic high school can be. While having the technical qualities of a straight-for-TV film and a plot full of teenage drama, it displays an innocent quality that captures the state of a high school brain.
Lara Jean, our love-stricken protagonist, is harder to root for than in the first film “To All The Boys I’ve Ever Loved Before” as she learns how to be in a relationship for the first time and the social implications that come with dating in high school. Throughout the film, she is constantly acting on her anxiety and worries, which makes it really hard to root for her as she attacks the people around her.
The irrational action and thought processes of our main character are highlighted very well in the fallout of her actions through the design of her on-screen boyfriend played by Noah Centineo, a common face in Netflix rom-coms. With charming and personable acting, he represents a mature high schooler transitioning into an adult world with a stronger sense of empathy and comprehension of how to handle his emotions.
He becomes a great plot device to contextualize our main character and remind the viewer that the main character is constantly in the wrong. The conflict in the plot isn’t what
Lara Jean thinks it is; she herself is the conflict.
The visual aspects of the film look like the shots were designed by BuzzFeed filmers or someone hired out of a marketing agency, but the writers captured the rationalization of high schoolers really well without drowning it in boomer humor.
Though it could have used more scenic diversity and maybe actors that aren’t 25 years-old playing high schoolers, this is a cute and stylized film about the anxiety and social pressure of dating in high school. It remains grounded and relatable unlike other terrible Netflix movies like “The Kissing Booth” or “F*&% the Prom.” A great flick for an afternoon on the couch with your over-anxious S/O.
Written By: Tony Le Calvez