Review: Heartwarming rom-com, “To All The Boys I’ve Loved Before,” breaks barriers in Hollywood


Elama Ali

“To All the Boys I’ve Loved Before” premiered on Netflix on August 17. The movie is based on the New York Times bestseller with the same title.

From a New York Times best selling book to an original Netflix film, “To All The Boys I’ve Loved Before, is a sweet, authentic and pure romantic comedy that leaves the viewer hungry for more. Director Susan Johnson brought author Jenny Han’s novel to life with perfect lead roles, romantic scenes and simplicity.

Not only is the film a hit, but it is also a stepping stone for the Asian community, as it stars a Vietnamese-American actress whom Jenny Han fought for. Han reportedly wanted an Asian lead because she wrote this book from her perspective as an Asian-American. It’s rare for Asians to get lead roles in most Hollywood films, so this movie shows that there is more to the Asian community than the stereotypes portrayed.

The film revolves around the life of eleventh grader Lara Jean Covey, played by Lana Condor, a quirky, family-oriented, half-Korean actress. Lara Jean’s high school life changes when her secret love letters get mailed to each of her past five crushes. One of Lara Jean’s ex-crushes, popular jock Peter Kavinsky, played by Noah Centineo, receives her letter and with some thought, they both start a fake relationship for their own reasons.

Dating Peter turns Lara Jean’s life around as she steps out of her comfort zone and gains new experiences; with every step they take, they fall more in love with each other. Seeing this, one may crave to have a Peter Kavinsky of their own, because of his many ideal boyfriend traits: he is a popular jock, a good listener, handsome, sensitive, and he establishes a close relationship with Lara Jean’s younger sister, Kitty, played by Anna Cathcart.

The movie gives off a warm, comfortable feeling, that leaves viewers longing to be in a relationship. Their emotions and awkwardness are relatable, allowing viewers to feel an attachment to Lara Jean. Although the movie is not necessarily surprising, it does a great job in giving the right amount of drama, romance, and humor without seeming clichè.

Overall, “To All The Boys I’ve Loved Before,” is a cute, light-hearted movie that represents a milestone for Hollywood, as it depicts a diverse, teen romance story of a well-known, charming jock and an inconspicuous, sincere girl.