‘To All the Boys I’ve Loved Before’ Adds a Refreshing Take on Teen Romance


Nuha Momin, Index Manager

If you are looking for a new teen romantic comedy, Netflix released To All the Boys I’ve Loved Before on Aug. 17 which has grown popular in a little amount of time.  The book, which was released in 2014, became highly liked and reached The New York Times Best Seller list. The popularity can also be seen by movie critics on Screen Rant, as well as the audience on Rotten Tomatoes have given the movie a high 95% approval.

Actress Lana Condor plays the female lead of Lara Jean, a 16 year old Korean-American, who develops feelings for multiple boys. Instead of voicing her emotions to them, she writes them down in letters, placing them into envelopes, to remember the intensity of her crushes. However, this becomes a problem when her sister, Margot, begins dating her crush. One of Lara Jean’s crushes, Peter Kavinsky, also faces a major problem when his ex-girlfriend starts dating another. Peter and Lara Jean decide to fake their relationship in efforts to make Peter’s ex, Gen, jealous. Both grow closer as they bond over the demise of Lara Jean’s mother and Peter’s father walking out.

To All the Boys I’ve Loved Before portrays a young woman dealing with having multiple crushes and highlights some common problems that families face. The great part about this movie was that it wasn’t just about a girl facing the struggles of having crushes, but actually dives into the reality of life and is thoughtful about the conflicts in a dating life. Typically, we wouldn’t see Asians, specifically Koreans, as the main lead in a Hollywood movie, but this cast was able to showcase most ethnicities. Through this inclusion, the movie was better able to reach all audience members in a way it would not have been able to with a typical cast.

Even though the movie was semi-realistic, there are portions of the movie which don’t line up. The main antagonist, Gen, is a one-dimensional classic bully who holds onto a grudge from middle school. Usually most people would hold onto a grudge for a couple of days or weeks, however Gen holding a grudge from three to four years back isn’t most realistic. However, since this is a just a movie, Gen was a well thought out character who did make us annoyed and frustrated, which was the point of her presence. As much as this movie reaches out to many different viewers, it has a selective audience due to the accessibility only being available through Netflix. If the movie was available on more outlets, such as Amazon Prime or in theaters, most people would be able to enjoy the movie. If more people were able to watch the movie, there would be a greater success for the producers and the movie in general because it would raise more money while also allowing more people the chance to watch. Most people who don’t have Netflix accounts haven’t heard of the movie and if they have, they have heard about from their peers who own an account. With the use of more outlets, the film would become more well-known among everyone, which would in turn generate more money and popularity.

Overall, To All the Boys I’ve Loved Before is one of the best teen romantic movies on Netflix because it showcases both the romantic and life struggles that a typical teenager might experience. Many romantic movies are too dramatic due to their use of similar storylines, however this movie wasn’t the same. It was able to allow audience members to connect and relate to the behavior of the characters while still getting a good laugh. So if you are in the mood for a teen romantic comedy that will melt your heart, make sure to watch To All the Boys I’ve Loved Before on Netflix.