Is 'To All The Boys I've Loved Before' Good? Honest Reviews Of Netflix's Teen Movies

If you’re a person existing in the world today, then you likely have access to a Netflix account. Maybe you have your own personal account or maybe are using your ex-boyfriend’s cousin’s roommate’s dog’s account (I’m not here to judge). Either way, you’ve definitely heard people raving about these Netflix-exclusive movies: To All The Boys I’ve Loved Before, The Kissing Booth, and Sierra Burgess Is A Loser.

Now, there’s been a lot of hype around these movies, but let’s just say not all three deserve your precious time. But don’t worry, that’s what I’m here for—I’ve lost several hours of my life watching some of this low-budget sh*t, just so you don’t have to (I’m such a saint, I know). I’m going to give you a full rundown of these movies from best to worst. And yes, this article does have spoilers cause it’s like, a recap, so you should kind of expect that.

‘To All The Boys I’ve Loved Before’

Okay, so this movie was EASILY my fave of the three, and totally worth the watch. Sure, it’s kinda cheesy, but all three of these movies were. This one was the least cheesy and the only one that didn’t actually give me cringe sweats. I’ll start by saying I was really feeling the Asian-led cast, which I feel like we never get to actually see in these basic teen chick flicks. Not to mention, we also had Aiden of Sex and The City fame playing the clueless widowed dad, so that was fun. And, sorry to bury the lede here, but every girl’s current heartthrob, Noah Centineo, plays hot/cool guy Peter Kavinsky .*Every girl gets instantly wet.* Peter Kavinsky is the love interest of our main character, Lara Jean, played by Lana Condor.

Now for the plot: Lara Jean is this shy “loser” who writes love letters to all the different crushes she has had throughout her life. She doesn’t actually send any of these letters (because she’s not like, fully psycho); she just stores them in a box in her room with the intention of never sending them. “Intention” being the key word there. Lara Jean’s little sister, Kitty, who is sick of Lara Jean being such a f*cking loser spending her Saturday nights watching Netflix (I’m being attacked), decides to just mail out all of these letters.

Apparently, Kitty’s objective in doing this was to help Lara Jean find a boyfriend. Kitty’s logic isn’t totally there. Sending sad handwritten diary-esque letters to all the boys she’s ever cried herself to sleep over warrants a restraining order, not a boyfriend. But of alas, it is a movie, so it somehow actually does grant Lara Jean her greatest wish. 

Sh*t hits the fan real quick because turns out one of the addressed (I’m sorry LJ, but did you REALLY need to address these if they were intended for a box) letters end up in the hands of her older sister’s boyfriend. When said boyfriend starts to approach Lara Jean, she does the only thing logical to avoid him—make out with Peter Kavinsky. Same.

To avoid Lara Jean needing to confront her sister’s boyfriend (yikes) and Peter wanting to make his ex-girlfriend (and Lara Jean’s ex-best friend) jealous, they devised a plan to fake date. Lara Jean totally wins on this cause she gets free rides to school and a hot date for every school event she wants. Girl knows how to play her cards right.

To sum up the rest of the unimportant filler-drama, Lara Jean has her sex tape leaked (but is still a virgin?), she dumps Peter’s sorry ass because she senses his ex-girlfriend is behind it, and Peter Kavinsky comes crawling right back to her.

What I liked about this movie was that, when Lara Jean thought Peter was being a f*ckboy, she didn’t act like some pathetic girl who just believed every word that came out of his mouth. Instead, she stood up for herself. Good for you, Lara Jean—way to be the strong, self-controlled woman that the rest of us can’t. And like, since she wasn’t a desperate b*tch, she even ended up at the end of the movie with Peter telling her he loved her!

Yeah, see ladies, it’s all about knowing your f*cking worth. If you want that f*ckboy wrapped around your finger like a sad little puppy, then you, yourself, can’t be a helpless damsel in distress. Thanks for teaching us hoes a thing or two, Lara Jean.

‘The Kissing Booth’

Man, this one was hard to watch. I suggest grabbing a glass of wine (or eight) if you want any shot at getting through this. This was like, Hallmark movie-meets-Lifetime movie-meets-Disney-Channel movie level-cheesy. I watched this one with some friends, so between the ridiculousness of the movie and our commentary, this unbearably corny movie was somehow slightly tolerable. 

Basically, the plot line here starts with two besties since birth, Elle and Lee.  Lee has this hot older brother that she’s recently developed a crush on because like, puberty and hormones. I’d like to point out that hot is definitely relative here. In my opinion, the hot older brother, Noah Flynn, looks like a teen wolf quadruple the age of anyone else in this cast. But, to each their own.  

Elle, played by Joey King, comes back to school for her junior year wearing an extremely short skirt with her uniform. She claims she’s wearing it because she hit puberty over the summer and didn’t seem to think that the ensuing whole body transformation would require bigger clothes. Like, this girl’s ass was legit hanging out to the point where this movie became borderline soft-core porn.

Elle and her inappropriate skirt garner the attention of legit the whole school and she instantly becomes a “hot” girl. Of course, this leads to Noah, Lee’s older brother, becoming extra protective of Elle. Elle, who is finally getting some male attention, gets annoyed that Noah’s overprotectiveness is constantly cock-blocking her. Kind of on Elle’s side here. Like, sis finally has a chance to get laid and now Noah is all up her biz. Not cool.

So then Elle and Lee decide to host a kissing booth as a school fundraiser. And, as predictable as it gets, Elle ends up kissing Noah via this kissing booth. Which, time out here, has anyone EVER actually seen a real-life kissing booth? Cause like, I’m pretty sure these are only a means of “fundraising” in movies… I’m not exactly sure what school would actually approve of a kissing booth. It’s like, a PG-13 version of prostitution…

Anyway, after Elle and Noah’s ~steamy~ kissing booth makeout, they naturally start dating. That’s right—they make out, and BAM, they start dating. If that was realistic I would’ve had like…never mind. There’s trouble in paradise, though! Elle and Lee have these stupid-ass “best friend” rules that they came up with when they were younger. The most important of them being that they can’t date each other’s siblings. And, seeing that Elle doesn’t even have siblings, Lee clearly came up with this rule because he knew his older brother was hotter than him. This means that Elle and Noah have to hide their relationship because it’s “against the rules.”

As predictable as it gets, Lee finds out, gets mad, yada-yada. They play an overly choreographed game of dance-dance revolution and are BFFs again. Elle and Noah end up together. But, unfortunately for DTF Elle, Noah leaves for college soon after (Harvard of all places! Stereotypical bad boy who’s a nerd at heart). When he leaves for college, I think they break up? It’s kinda unclear here, but the movie ends with Elle riding away on Noah’s motorcycle really feeling herself.

I think the lesson here was that if you embrace the hoe you are inside, you’ll get attention from the hottest guy in school, and even a free motorcycle!

‘Sierra Burgess Is A Loser’

Welp guys, looks like Barb (from Stranger Things) finally got her big break! Yes, it may be starring as the “loser” in this movie, but at least it beats being eaten by a Demogorgon while her supposed bestie loses her v card. Talk about a tragic ending #JusticeForBarb.

Don’t worry, Barb fans! She gets her justice, all right. This bitch gets to make out with Noah Centineo—twice! Although, I will say, his character in this movie is so pathetic that it turned me off to him completely. 

Anyways, Barb’s character in this movie, Sierra, is a little less pathetic than Barb was. But only a litte less. Sierra is a high school “loser” but one with a hell of a lot of self-confidence. Of course, this self-confidence thing is short lived and instead, she becomes the all-time greatest catfish to ever live. This bitch puts Nev and Max to shame!

So one day, Jamey asks for this hot girl Veronica’s phone number. However, Veronica is not actually interested in him because he’s a “loser” since he has “loser friends.” Fair. So, Veronica gives Jamey Sierra’s phone number instead, but acts like it’s hers. Jamey sends Sierra a selfie and, even though she has no clue who he is or how he got her number, she recognizes he’s hot and just decides to chat him up anyway. As expected, these two really start to hit it off via text. By “hit it off” I mean they basically just send each other a bunch of weird animal memes back and forth (which is my preferred method of flirting). They also seem to think one another are just downright hysterical. Note, I did not laugh once during this movie.

Eventually, the catfishing gets out of hand. And I mean OUT OF HAND! Sierra convinces Veronica to go on dates with Jamey and, in exchange, Sierra tutors Veronica. So basically, Veronica goes on dates with the guy Sierra is OBSESSED with. Meanwhile, Sierra creeps around them, living vicariously through Veronica. I’m not really sure how Sierra actually thought this plan was eventually going to work out. As you guessed, everything blows up in Sierra’s face when Jamey actually kisses Veronica. Sierra gets mad jealous and goes batsh*t cray. Like, WTF did you expect Sierra?

Sierra has a psycho meltdown and embarrasses Veronica, and Sierra’s whole catfishing scheme is revealed. But, since it’s a movie, of course, Jamey eventually comes back around and decides to give Sierra a chance. You know, because he’s so into her “personality.” So much so that he even takes this catfishing snake to homecoming!

Like, I could see if they ended up becoming really good friends or something. But it makes no sense he would end up with her. ESPECIALLY after she played him so hard. Like, this guy must be so desperate for love. That, or maybe he just realized he had a strange fetish for redheads? IDK what angle they were going for here, but I wasn’t buying it.

This movie has also received a sh*t ton of backlash for making some lazy jokes that they thought would be quirky and cute but like this movie, are just not. I won’t go into it; I trust you all have Google.

To conclude, I’m pretty sure all of these movies had the same exact sets. Maybe with the unexplainable success of these movies, Netflix will have a little more to work with for the next one. If they do decide to create more, which they obvi will, I’ll take a lot more of Lana Condor and a little less Noah Centineo. That guy’s head is getting wayyy too big and someone needs to take away his social media accounts ASAP.

Images: Giphy (7);

Shannon McCormick
Shannon McCormick
Shannon McCormick (previously under the alias of 'Betch Dressed') is a self-proclaimed fashion expert with a sick obsession for all things Bravo. She primarily writes about everything fashion, but also dabbles in other areas because she's a talented overachieving Virgo. Follow her on Insta (@shanmccormick) and comment/DM topics you want to hear her incredible take on next!