Binge Break: To All the Boys: give me that cheesy rom-com feeling

To All the Boys: P.S. I Still Love You continues the same celebration of love as its predecessor.

Kayli Reese, Managing Editor

I love films that force me to lean into the screen to pay attention, ones that leave me in a constant state of tension for days after I’ve left the movie theater. But I also love films that are unfairly brushed off as “cheesy” or “girly” — partly because attributing a feminine adjective to something doesn’t automatically decrease its value. Because sometimes, you just need to watch people fall in love. It gives you hope.

The sequel to the Netflix hit To All the Boys I’ve Loved Before dropped Feb. 12, just a few days before the love-centric holiday. The movie — called To All the Boys: P.S. I Still Love You — picks up right where the first movie left off. We see Lara Jean (Lana Condor) and Peter Kavinsky (Noah Centineo) begin their real relationship after catching feelings while fake dating.

It’s the type of movie you can predict. The two teens are in love, will fight, will likely be in love again. There will be a big kiss set to a love song (but really, To All the Boys has a great soundtrack that I am listening to as I write). Still, that doesn’t mean I don’t squeal with every single cute moment as Lara Jean and Peter figure out how to navigate post-happily ever after.

Even though this is a movie about a couple who came together through some accidentally-mailed love letters, another equally great aspect of the film is how it fully embraces the Korean culture of Lara Jean and her family.

The author of the books the film series is based off of, Jenny Han, has spoken in interviews about how Hollywood producers at first wanted to whitewash the movies, and thank goodness she didn’t let that happen. It places the grand love story in a world that looks a lot like our own, with an Asian-American actress at the forefront.

To All the Boys: P.S. I Still Love You increases its representation even more than the first movie by introducing the incredibly charming and multitalented Jordan Fisher as John Ambrose, another boy who received an old love letter from Lara Jean who is the exact definition of “Mr. Steal Your Girl” from his first scene. I was a To All the Boys I’ve Loved Before fan that didn’t believe anyone — I mean anyone — could be a more perfect man than Peter Kavinsky, but John Ambrose certainly gives him a run for his money.

But really, this isn’t a one-boy-versus-the-other situation (I was never a big Twilight girl, I don’t understand the whole “team” thing). As an audience member, you root for Lara Jean, and that’s who both Peter and John Ambrose are rooting for, too.

Both men do their best to make Lara Jean comfortable by listening and remembering the things she says. They go out of their way to do sweet things for her, surprise her, and encourage her in all her endeavors. They remember she doesn’t like driving in the snow and what kind of cookies she bakes when she’s stressed. It’s no less than Lara Jean, and Lana Condor for that matter, deserve.

It’s what we all deserve in any sort of romantic relationship. That’s part of the reason I love love stories so much, from 10 Things I Hate About You to To All the Boys: P.S. I Still Love You. It’s a reminder of what can be so good in life — the people we share it with.

Plus, this movie has a soft Noah Centineo. You can’t ask for anything else.

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