‘To All The Boys I’ve Loved Before’ offers unique twist on teen romance films

Netflix continues to captivate audiences with original films



Lana Condor at a press conference during Comic-con 2018.

“To All The Boys I’ve Loved Before” is the newest Netflix original film causing audiences to fall in love. Originally a book written by New York Times bestselling author Jenny Han, the movie adaptation directed by Susan Johnson has captivated a teenage audience.

Since its August release, it has remained a prominent topic on social media. With a 95 percent rating on Rotten Tomatoes, social media platforms have been flooded with enthusiastic fans, discussing the realness and authenticity of this teen romance.

The movie chronicles a teenage girl named Lara (Lana Condor), who wrote five love letters in the past. Every time she had a crush that was overwhelming for her, she wrote them a letter to let out the emotions. She fantasizes about being with the people she writes about and what life would be like. Suddenly, the letters mysteriously get out to the public, including the boys to whom she wrote. She makes an agreement with one of the boys, Peter Kavinsky (Noah Centineo), to fake a relationship in order to prevent the other boys who got letters from thinking she still has feelings for them. They play out their fake relationship over a series of months while dealing with complications of their lives and pasts.

While people rave about many aspects of the movie, Vietnamese-American actress Lana Condor’s breakthrough performance has garnered significant attention. Fans adore seeing someone of a different race play a lead role in a popular and influential movie, without her race being the focus of her role.  Fans relish how accurately this movie captures real teenager emotions, from love to mean girls.

Fans also adore heart-throb Noah Centineo as Peter Kavinsky. After his dramatic and remarkable performance in the movie and his good looks, viewers are considering him the new Zac Efron.  Even after his affix performance in this movie and connection to the role, he is continually getting roles in other Netflix originals and , such as “Sierra Burgess is a Loser” and “The Diary.”

Defying the mold for the genre, this movie isn’t the average cookie cutter teen romance.

“I felt like it really captured the essence of an awkward teenage girl going through life and she ends up getting what she wants in the end,” sophomore Sophia Elliott said.

“To All The Boys I’ve Loved Before” has a light and wholesome feel that viewers can enjoy sitting down and watching.

While the movie has proven a hit, some viewers say that the book and the movie fail to correlate. Original readers of the book were saddened when their favorite sections of the novel didn’t make it into the film, with numerous scenes either excluded from or added to the film.

“The book was more realistic, the places, the story of it all, and the characters, they didn’t involve so many characters as in the book,” sophomore Sabrina Diaz said.

This difference bothered viewers who first fell in love with the book, such as some of the places the characters explored and some more scenarios that didn’t make it into the movie.  In such a short time, this movie has already gained a slew of supportive fans eager for a sequel. Since the book is part of a trilogy, viewer demand should procure a second movie.

In an interview with Emily Martin of Bookriot, Jenny Han said she hopes that if there’s a desire for a second movie, they will make one. “[The advantage of the movie being released on Netflix] is that it takes off some of the pressure of a traditional movie release where [the film] has to have a strong opening weekend or [it’s] sunk. The platform allows for a natural build of excitement,” Han was quoted in the interview. 

The franchise for “To All The Boys I’ve Loved Before” could be huge, in not only profit but in its popularity as well. They have a chance to expand on this movie and make two other movies that the fans of the first one could very much enjoy, if not more than the first one.

“Too All The Boys I’ve Loved Before” has set a place for itself in the iconic romance category, not to be knocked out anytime soon.