After blowing up the Netflix’s own version of box office in 2018, the streaming breakout hit To All The Boys I’ve Loved Before was warranted a sequel (and a third one too). The offering now in 2020 is To All the Boys: P.S. I Still Love You, based on the book (you know it) P.S. I Still Love You. While the first one was mostly by-the-numbers romantic comedy, Lana Condor’s (Lara Jean) and Noah Centineo’s (Peter) charm and chemistry was found to be quite effective. P.S. I Still Love You is trying to live up to that hype while still also trying to stay truthful to the book it’s adapting.
The star in the making, Lana Condor is again doing much of the heavy lifting here, providing another well rounded performance as the main character Lara Jean. While the written character development is a bit lacking, Condor plays ”LJ” with enough naivety and ambitiousness to make her work just as well as in the first movie. And though not much has changed, the production designs and sets (by Chris August, Catherine Ircha and Renee Read) are still vibrant with color, standing out from the rest of teen drama productions as of late. New guy on the block, Jordan Fisher (John Ambrose), is a good sparring partner for Condor but the lack of shared screen time drags the effectiveness of their relationship down.
It’s very rare that one of the two main characters of a film manage to disappear from the spotlight in a sequel. Unfortunately that happens here with Noah Centineo who seems to be in a completely different movie the whole time, bringing a lackluster performance as Peter and constantly losing to Condor’s and Fisher’s acting. Maybe he has realised that the casting of people (himself included) in mid-to-late 20’s as 16 year olds doesn’t work at all. Netflix has been doing a good job with the casting of kids and teens in their shows which makes this case such a surprise. P.S. I Still Love You also loses steam in its screenplay which doesn’t explore the growth Lara Jean could be doing neither does it ever flow naturally, instead it rushes storylines and romantic developments.
Smileys: Lana Condor, set design, prop design
Frowneys: Casting, Noah Centineo, screenplay
P.S. I wish there was no Poor.Sequel.