The sequel to the much loved ‘To All The Boys I’ve Loved Before’ is now streaming on Netflix, and I streamed it as soon as I saw it on their home page.
I had seen the first movie with a bunch of my girlfriends and we all loved it. It was a breezy kind of chick flick you would want to watch on a girls’ night out. The second film picks off from where the first one ended – Lara Jean is officially dating and not ‘fake’ dating the hottest guy in school, Peter Kavinsky.
The movie starts off with an adorable montage of 16 year old Lara Jean trying out different outfits in her almost picture perfect room, despite the slight mess. She excitedly sings a classic romance song from the 80s, until interrupted by her cheeky younger sister who subtly says she doesn’t look ready for her date.
Lana Condor is as adorable as she was in the first film and reminds you of what it felt like to be in love when you were a teenager. Michael Fimognari gets all those ‘feels’ right. I was smiling through the first few minutes, where Peter and Lara go for dinner, then go to a pretty place to light up sky lanterns.
The makers pick all the right kind of songs for every scene in the film, the music carries the story forward. But all’s not rosy in Lara’s life. While she thinks she has just entered an almost perfect relationship, the first plot twist comes right after her first date. She finds herself face to face with her childhood crush John Ambrose, who receives one of her old love letters that her sister had mischievously mailed to all her crushes. Her heart races again.
Jordan Fisher as Ambrose is aptly cast as her childhood love interest and makes you wish Lara would pick him in the end. And our heroine too finds herself torn between Ambrose and her boyfriend, while she also battles insecurities over his ex-girlfriend.
The movie seems to have been shot with a lot of love, almost every frame in this film is like a painting, you feel like you could pause at any scene and it would be picture perfect. That’s a rare kind of feat in teen romance films that are made to appeal to the masses.
But everything is not perfect about this film. While the first half was funny, endearing, in the middle, the story gets a little weary. I haven’t read the book, but there are some cliché tropes – like Lara always getting interrupted when she wants to say something important. The done to death ‘walking down the stairs in a pretty gown’ scene, where the boy find himself gasping for his breath.
Call me cynical, but while at first, I was all excited about the whole teens in love theme, however, towards the end, I found myself sighing and thinking that the makers are making the film a little too serious than necessary.
You really feel bad for Jordan Fisher in the end, the perfect guy who is undeservedly led on and rejected; while Lara manages to get an almost fairy tale like ending. The climax could have been better. But well, it’s a pretty good chick flick for a round two on girls’ night out. It’s a 7/10 for me.
If I had to sum it up in one sentence – Breezy beginning, boring in between, balanced in the end, but the boys deserved better.