‘To All The Boys I Loved Before’ sends all the feels

Art by Mikayluh Bowers

Story By Eleni Pappas

Go back to what it was like having a first crush. Most people get crushes at one time or another, and some get them all the time. Sometimes they can get ultra intense, even a tad obsessive, occupying thoughts, making palms sweat, and speeding up heart rate. The crush becomes romanticized beyond reason and the crusher is not able to help how this person makes them feel, even if they are totally off limits or out of one’s league. Say, like a sister’s boyfriend or the most popular guy in school.

Many have wondered what would happen if all these gushy feelings were accidentally revealed to all of one’s crushes. Gulp.

To All The Boys I’ve Loved Before is addressed to any girl who has struggled with having a crazy crush. It came out on Netflix on Aug. 17 and is based on the the same title by Jenny Han. The film is directed by Susan Johnson (Carrie Pilby) and stars The Fosters’ Noah Centineo and features famous Viner King Bach.

The Netflix Original begins with Lara Jean Covey (Lana Condor) showing us her life and explaining how, when she gets an intense crush, she writes down her feelings in a letter and addresses them. Then she never sends them. One of her letters is to her sister Margot’s boyfriend, Josh (Israel Broussard), but she would never tell him because she cares too much about Margot. The situation, however, gets worse when somehow the letters are sent to each of her five crushes, including Josh. So then, of course, like any rational girl would do, she begins a fake relationship with Peter Kavinsky (Centineo), one of her crushes and the most popular guy in school. She agrees to this to throw Josh off her trail and make Kavinsky’s ex jealous. The fake couple create a contract of requirements in their fake relationship, but what ends up happening was never included in the list.

To All The Boys I’ve Loved Before is a coming of age film about the highs and lows of love in high school. A favorite theme in the film is the importance of honesty and being able to put oneself first. When Lara Jean falls for Kavinsky, and believes he is still in love with his ex, she speaks out about wishing to be someone’s first choice, and not just second best. Throughout the film she learns to have confidence, to be more adventurous, and to take the first step towards what she wants. Instead of letting herself get pushed around and of lying to everyone like Josh and her family, she is truthful about her feelings.

In a word, To All The Boys I’ve Loved Before is a great movie promoting self worth and independence. It is a love story like no other with its fair share of comedic and deep moments. The fact that no other production company until Netflix was willing to keep to Han’s wishes to have an Asian American protagonist, only creates more appreciation for this Original. If the novel is as enjoyable as the film, copies will surely be flying off the shelves.  

Watch it now with a Netflix subscription.

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